Up and away: how to score the best flight deals
How to vacay
According to the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC), global tourism generated $7.6 trillion for the global GDP in 2014, making it one the world's fastest growing and largest sectors. At the heart of this industry's growth is the embrace and enhancement of digital technology, making travel more accessible and affordable than ever before.
With so many online tools available, it can be a daunting task knowing where to start. We've pooled together some top tips from around the world to make your next trip big on wow factor and easy on the hip pocket.
Let's get digital
CheapOair and Skyscanner are popular websites for finding travel deals, but if you do a little more digging on lesser-known travel sites, you're likely to find even better prices.
Check out I Know The Pilot, ITA Matrix, the Flight Deal, and Skiplagged for under-the-radar deals, and be sure to sign up to price alerts for destinations and dates on your wish list.
If you're planning a trip in advance, use Google Flights' tracking tool to keep tabs on when flights are the cheapest.
Be strategic about timing
The sweet spot for the best pricing on airfares is somewhere around 45 to 90 days before departure. Friday is the most expensive day of the week to buy a plane ticket, according to new research, with flights on average 13 per cent dearer than if booked on a Sunday. Customers have previously been advised to book plane tickets on a Tuesday because they were most likely to find a bargain.
And if you're a last minute kind of person, sometimes this can work in your favour, with sites like CheapOair offer last minute deals that are worth checking out if you decide to make travel plans closer to the holidays.
Fly on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Saturdays
Airfares are priced on supply and demand, so when supply is high and demand is low, airfares will be lowest. Most business travel happens on Mondays, Thursdays and Fridays, and personal travel mainly occurs around the weekend on Fridays and Sundays. Thus, Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Saturdays will usually be the cheapest days to fly. If your schedule is flexible enough, plan your trip on one of these days and reduce your costs.
Don't travel during peak season
While most destinations have an ‘ideal time to visit, largely dictated by weather, don't take this as gospel. You can save a significant wad of cash by visiting in off season, and still get just as much out of the experience. Booking.com compiled a handy calendar of the cheapest destinations to travel to each month, with whopping savings of up to 42% on hot spots like Barcelona, Amsterdam, Lison, San Francisco and Los Angeles. Check out the full calendar here.
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