Monday, 6 March 2017

HOW TO TRAVEL CHEAP? PART 1 : LOW-COST FLIGHTS



Although at times I can get frustrated, I get some sort of weird thrill from booking flights which is actually quite a bizarre thought, but there is something quite invigorating knowing you will be going to discover somewhere new. It can however be quite overwhelming having to experience the tiresome continuous searching when trying to book the cheapest flights when planning a trip away. I thought I'd put together a few handy key tips that could help you save your money and time.


FLY SMART - CHEAP FLIGHTS

My first key tips for finding the cheapest flights are to be flexible with dates, destinations and be prepared to be squished on dodgy airlines with not the comfiest of seats. When considering locations, larger airports are more than likely to offer cheaper flights than smaller ones which is something to keep in mind especially if your plan is to fly to a small island or remote location. For every flight I book I use Skyscanner, which is a travel search engine site dedicated to comparing the cheapest airlines of all flights as well as the individual dates. Being flexible really is key to travelling, with skyscanner's 'whole month' option, it allows you to find the cheapest flights of the entire month and you can usually find some really wicked deals on it. 

I mentioned how you may be stuck on a crappy airline for the cheaper the price... I personally have found this is not necessarily the case with long haul flights but more or less when you'll be flying from country to country in the same continent. Airlines like AirAsia where you'll find the flights are cheap as chips, you'll probably find yourself sitting in a seat which feels like its designed to hold just one bum cheek - but for the price you'll be paying its not reallllly that bad. You can however still find some amazing deals with luxury airlines for long haul flights, like my flights to Mexico with Virgin Atlantic were only just over £400 and my flights to Vietnam with Emirates were pretty much the same price from what I remember, both booked through skyscanner!


MAXIMISE YOUR TRIP

You should consider the journey of the entire trip and think about maximising your trip by visiting multiple places for the same price, e.g. a flight from New York to Los Angeles is £324, but you can get a flight again from New York, but this time too San Fransisco for £60 cheaper. With that £60 you save, you can put that towards a bus from San Francisco to Los Angeles and accommodation, and for the same price, if not cheaper - you've managed to visit two cities! Sometimes making alternative routes can really work in your favour, saving you money and allowing you too see more places than planned so its worth spending the time considering a different journey. 


It's equally as beneficial to check the prices for both one way flights as well as return fares. Sometimes travelling two separate single trips can work out cheaper, or allows you to only fly direct flights without any lay overs in different airports. When flying home from Indonesia, I would have had to make several different stops at multiple airports increasing the duration of my journey by nearly 15 hours. Instead, by flying to Singapore for only £30 from Bali, and spending 5 days there at the end of the trip meant I got to see the city for a good amount of time but more importantly allowed me to book a single direct one way flight back to London for only £230!


KEEP IT A SECRET 

It's perfectly normal to think you're going utterly insane from seeing a flight change price in the matter of seconds when refreshing your web browser. Your web browser cookies can alter an increase in flight prices when a particular flight route is searched repeatedly, this happens because the airline wants to scare you into booking a flight fast from thinking the flights will drastically change soon.

To stop this from happening you need to search in private browsing mode, to do this follow these steps:

Google Chrome/Safari - press Command (or 'Control' if using a PC)
whilst pressing Shift, 'N'.
-
Mozilla Firefox/Internet Explorer - press Command (or 'Control' if using a PC)
whilst pressing Shift, 'P'.
-
This then opens a new browser window where your information is not tracker, you will then see prices which do not inflate in price. 



HAVEN'T PLANNED YOUR NEXT TRIP YET? NEED INSPIRATION?

 If you don't have a trip already in the pipe line just yet, or are eager to get some inspiration for a future trip, in my spare time every now and again I have a little gander on Skyscanners search everywhere option which allows you to see every flight for the cheapest prices for any destination. Sometimes finding the flights first can inspire or start the beginning of a entire trip you wouldn't even think about before. 



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