Part two of our tips for how to get cheap flights delves a little deeper into ways you can save some cash when booking flights. After looking at comparison website algorithms, mistake fairs and promo codes sites, we analysed which methods actually work and have collected them into a simple list. We’d recommend reading our part two first to make sure you’ve covered all of the quick and easy steps to booking cheap flight tickets.

1. Browse incognito

There’s divided opinion over whether airlines and comparison sites track cookies in incognito browsing mode. Some have commented that although they can, they don’t, and others haven’t wanted to comment.

This is why we wouldn’t recommend researching flights incognito straightaway. Instead, find the flight you want in your normal browser. Then switch to an incognito to book that flight. Cookies aren’t tracked between your normal and incognito browsers, so the algorithms won’t be able to tell that you’ve been browsing flights previously. If the site had increased the flight price because you’ve looked at it a few times, it’ll most likely drop when you go incognito.

2. Search ticket prices for individual travellers

When you search flights as a group, airlines tend to base the average price using the most expensive ticket. Therefore, you end up paying more on each ticket overall. Instead, you should search ticket prices individually. It might be easier to book them together but booking them separately can save you money.

If you’re worried about not being able to sit next to each other, try flying with an airline that lets you choose your seats and book the ones you want at the same time. This will negate the likelihood of somebody else booking the seat next to you that you wanted your friend to be in.

3. Book multiple flights separately

The same advice works for booking multiple flights – it can be cheaper to pay for them separately. This will depend on their airline and how much the flights you want are in demand. Make sure you compare the prices of booking flights as one package and getting them separately. You might find that having a slightly longer layover and taking the next flight (or visa versa) brings the cost down significantly.

4. Use layovers as an extra trip

Layovers can also be a great excuse to extend your trip! Dale took me to Berlin for a Christmas present and because he booked last minute flights, getting from the UK to Berlin directly was very expensive. Instead, we had a layover in Brussels which not only cut the flight prices in half, but also led to us experiencing the best sandwiches we’ve ever had. Seriously, nothing has beaten those sandwiches yet.

5. Avoid peak travel months

A simple one, but definitely worth remembering. Try and avoid peak travel months if you can. Not only will the flights be cheaper because there’s lower demand, but hotels, other transport services and even restaurants slash their prices out of season.

6. Think about using other means of transport

Since flights to popular destinations are more expensive, you could try booking to somewhere that’s close to where you want to go and cheaper to get to. Then you can travel by bus or train to where you’re actually staying. This strategy might enable you to get cheap flight tickets and save more on transport costs overall. Plus, you get to see a bit more of the country you’re visiting and potentially have more of a local experience. A win-win situation! Just make sure you compare the total costs of each option before booking.

7. Sign up for flight alert subscriptions

Flight alert companies use bots to research airlines and flight comparison sites, then they email their customers about deals they think might interest them. These are often paid subscription services. But if you fly long haul often you can save a lot of money even when you take that subscription fee into account.

We picked out the top three flight alert subscription services based on subscription price, cost savings and how well you can tailor the alerts to your preferences. They are:

8. Use mistake fares and promo codes sites

Sometimes airlines accidentally list flights that are cheaper than they should be. This is down to human error and technology issues. These happen every four-to-six weeks and tend to only last as long as it takes for the airline to fix the mistake – usually less than 24 hours. This means that you’ll likely miss mistake fares or promo flights if you don’t act quickly.

There are companies who search the web for cheap flights and alert their subscribers about any mistake fares or promo deals. Just be aware that some of these are travel agents and may not always have the cheapest flights. You should also do your own research to ensure that you actually find cheap flights and avoid scams.

The mistake fare and promo codes sites we’ve found to be worth using are:

Brussels aeroplane

9. Set up a tweet deck for cheap flights

One free thing you can do that requires minimal effort (and not giving away your email address or paying for a subscription) is to set up a Tweetdeck. Do this for hashtags like #cheapflights and #mistakefares to find mistake fares or discounted last minute flights quickly. You’ll have to be flexible on where and when you go to take advantage of these, but isn’t that half the fun?

10. Act fast!

Once you find a great promo or cheap flight, you need to act quickly. This is especially true for mistake fares because they only last as long as it takes for the airline to fix the problem. You can bet that if you’ve noticed the price, somebody who works for that company will have too. When I say act quickly, I don’t mean book that second. Instead, you should take some time out to research that deal – is it really the cheapest flight to that place? Do you want to go to the destination? Can you take those dates off work? If the answer is yes, BOOK IT! Before the flight disappears and you’re left wishing you had been quicker.

Brussels airport layover

Part 1 – more tips

We’ve got so many flight hacks (I got a little bit carried away researching) that we’re having to split them into two blogs with 10 tips in each.

Read part one now!

1 Comment

10 Proven Tips for Booking Cheap Flights - Izzie and Dale · 27 October 2021 at 2:00 AM

[…] got so many flight hacks that we’re having to split them into two blogs with 10 tips in each. Read part 2 […]

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