With the holidays quickly approaching, I thought it would be a great time to share information on finding the best deals for travel. Over the years, our family has spread across multiple states. I’m always looking for the cheapest way to travel so that we can fit in the most visits possible within our budget.
Here are some of the ways I look for good value:
- Use flight aggregator sites to quickly see which airlines are offering the best deals for your route. Sites like Hipmunk, Kayak, and Booking.com all let you compare flight options across most major airlines. Hipmunk is a personal favorite of mine. It is unique in that it provides a visual view of the flight schedules along with an “Agony” score. The score factors in criteria such as the number of stops, length of the layover, and overall trip length. This is especially helpful for families where a very long layover might outweigh a small amount of savings.
- If your schedule allows it, try to travel on off-peak days. Tuesday, Wednesday, and Saturday are the cheapest dates to fly. You also get the benefit of less crowded airports and flights. I have occasionally flown on the actual holiday. I have found great deals on these flights, but it can be risky during the winter months since weather is more likely to cause delays.
- Research the best time to purchase flights. According to Skyscanner, you will find the cheapest flights 30 days prior to a domestic flight and 4 months prior to international trips. Purchase flights on either Tuesday or Saturday afternoon to find the best rates. Airlines are constantly changing their pricing models so I recommend using Kayak’s fare tracker for the latest information. Using this tool, you can see their advice on whether to buy a ticket now or wait. You can also set up alerts to be notified of price drops.
What tips do you have for saving money on holiday flights?