Find Great Fares
Our experts share tips to help you find great fares.
Lower cost fares exist on almost every commercial plane, but they get snapped up early by those who plan ahead. To find the best fares on a trip, check at least a month before you plan to fly. If you see a great fare early, snap it up, it’s more likely to increase in price before it gets any cheaper.
Fares change constantly throughout the day — major booking systems receive price updates on an ongoing basis. Check for low fares throughout the day and into the evening. Prices often seem to creep up during the business day and fall back to more reasonable fares late at night. To really find the lowest fares, search at odd times. For example, some great values are often found late on a Tuesday night.
Ask a Professional
Your local or corporate travel agent can often get you better fares than you can find online and a person on the phone is guaranteed not to crash your operating system. Travel agents often have corporate deals with the major carriers that allow them to offer lower prices to their customers and are experts at combining hotel and other costs into packages that can save you money and time in the long run.
Search Multiple Sources
As online shopping becomes more complex, going to different sources may be more important than ever. Some sites such as Expedia, Hotwire, Orbitz, Priceline and Travelocity have been around for years. Other site aggregators search the web for sites for the best fares. Be sure to compare the results and try multiple routing options.
Extend to a Saturday Night Stay
Commercial airlines almost always have lower prices for flights that include a Saturday night stay at you destination. Book opera tickets on a Saturday in San Francisco, stay an extra day and save the difference on airfare.
Check the “Code-Share” – United from Ithaca
Airlines often partner to offer tickets on planes that fly other corporate colors. You can fly from Ithaca to hundreds of destinations across the globe on a United Airlines ticket and a first leg on American Airlines to Philadelphia or New York City.
Consider returning from your trip on a Tuesday or a Wednesday to save some travel cash. Sunday and Monday returns often carry a premium on certain tickets. Think about catching another ball game or day at the beach and use up one more day of vacation to catch that lower fare for your flights.