I want to share the above article with you written by Mandy Walker – she create an amazing piece of work in the October 2016 edition!
As for me, I will give you my personal low down on getting the most flying for your money. This comes with a caveat – ALWAYS fly on a major US carrier because you will be with the most experience crews and most well maintained jets!
- Book off season – If this is not something you must fly for on a specific timeline, then fly when the others are not. For example, flights and airports are packed during the summer travel months and the holidays. If you are planning a vacation and do not have restraints, fly mid September through mid November, mid January through mid March, and mid April through the end of May. You will find lower ticket prices in these time frames!
- Celebrations – Check to make sure the destination you are going to and from does not have a major event taking place. For example: you may think the fall is a great time to fly to Germany and know you should probably avoid Octoberfest because gee, that must be in October right? Wrong. It is celebrated from mid or late September through the first weekend in October. The bigger the party, the more the people, the larger the ticket prices!
- All nighters (aka red eyes) – These flights can be a bit brutal on jet lag and the body clock but they can save you some serious cash. I am always amazed when I show up to the airport at 10:00 at night or arrive at 5:00 in the morning and see the airports full of bustling people!
- Days and Times – Think of the days and times most people want to travel and avoid booking in congruence. Thursday afternoons through Friday nights and again Sunday late mornings through Monday mornings will cost you a bit more. Try to book for flying Monday afternoons through Thursday or on Saturdays. This will help save you more mullah!
- Hidden fees – There is one particular airlines that wipes people out with these. I will never mention anything negative but be aware and read the fine print. If you want that bottom basement price, there is a reason for this. Think honestly first about what you really think it should cost to fly you from point A to point B safely on a $150 million jet with experienced crews keeping you safe and sound. Then go from there. Where will those hidden fees come in to play? Baggage costs? Seat fees? Food and drink?
- Shopping – First, shop on the specific airline websites. See what flights and jets they offer and at what times for your destinations. You can take a look on Travelocity, Orbitz, Kayak, Cheap Flights, Expedia, Hotwire, Priceline. You could possibly find a better deal but is it worth the time and effort to save $20 and fly on no-name brand X carrier?
- Mileage plans – Yes, you can get free airline tickets this way! Some of the majors have shifted their strategies from miles flown to dollars spent. You can get a mileage card from the carrier you fly with the most or one you would like to fly on more. Then, make all of your normal purchases on it. I only recommend this if you can be disciplined in paying them off each month because the interest rates can be a little higher in some cases. If you purchase tickets, purchase with your mileage account and work toward that vacation flight!I hope this helps give you some extra money in your pocket! Come fly with me again soon! Captain Laura