Wednesday, February 01, 2017

How to save money when booking a flight

Here's a good article on WiseBread that clears up a few things for me. Don't make these mistakes:

1. Buying Your Ticket Too Early or Too Late
How early or late you buy your ticket can affect how much you pay as well. According to studies by CheapAir, the best time to book domestic airfare in the U.S. is about eight weeks in advance of your trip. If you can't be that exact, at least try to book within a window of 21–112 days before your flight, which is when tickets will be at their lowest prices. There's some hype about being able to grab last-minute cheap tickets, but this usually has to do with a quirky sale — so it's nothing you should count on if you've been planning your trip for a while.
2. Using the Wrong Search Engine
When it comes to paying less for a flight, using the right search engine is a must to ensure you're getting the best prices. You can use the free ITA Matrix, which has been rebuilt on Google technology, to take advantage of the same software that travel agents often use to book you a flight. (See also: The Secret Flight Search Site Savvy Travelers Use. Booking flights can be a costly endeavor, but there are plenty of ways to save money and make sure you're getting the best price on the market. See how much money you can save using these tips.
3. Booking to Fly on a More Expensive Day
Another common mistake that people make is forgetting to check flexible dates. Different days of the week usually offer different fares. For example, flights leaving the U.S. on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Saturdays are the least expensive days to fly, according a study by Fare Compare. If your schedule is adjustable and you're not checking flexible dates, you're probably paying more than you should for your ticket. Prices can vary wildly from day to day for the exact same flight.

4. Revealing Your Browsing History
If you haven't been searching for flights in incognito mode, or at the very least clearing your Internet browser's cache, you may be spending more on flights than you should. That's because flight booking sites often use technology that tracks what its customers (you) have been browsing. 
That means they know when you've looked at a flight multiple times. Rather than lowering the price to lure you to a final sale, they may raise the price to encourage you to buy before the price goes any higher. You can easily remedy this by browsing in incognito mode or clearing your cache, saving anywhere from $50–$200 in some cases. (See also: 6 Ways to Avoid Sneaky Online Price Changes
Next time, don't get tricked into buying a ticket that's too expensive. Clear your cache first and buy your ticket second.
More good advice here.

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