Despite all the traveling I’ve done, I feel like I’m still not savvy when it comes to booking airfare.
I never know when to buy, I never know the best route to take, I never know how to get creative enough to get some sweet deal (like Brooke Schoenman was able to get on her last trip to the States).
Now that I’ve officially started pricing flights to the States for my wedding in April (squee!), I feel like I should shake things up to see how low I can go. This trip will undoubtedly be my most expensive journey home given the wedding price tag attached to it; that’s why it’s more important to me than ever to find the best deal there is. Here’s what I’m researching:
Fare sale alerts: I have several set up for slightly different dates and different airports (both NYC area airports and Philly) to see when prices drop. I must be careful, as my wedding falls around Easter, so if I don’t find the right sweet spot, I’ll be stuck paying a higher holiday fare. I don’t, however, want to take too much time off work for my wedding, so while there’s a little flexibility, it’s only within maybe one or two days.
Alternative budget flight sites: I’m doing a little more digging to see what else is out there in terms of sites that compile low-cost air fares. I’ve always relied on certain sites, but it was time take inventory with all the competing options that have popped up over the years. I realized I had misconceptions about some sites in the past. For instance, I always thought Student Flights was just for students, but they actually can find cheap international flights for the rest of the traveling population as well.
Piecemeal flights: Who says you have to book a single return ticket for the whole journey? I’m pricing round-trips to Los Angeles and then seeing if I can get a low-cost return flight between there and the east coast with a separate carrier (if anyone has ever successfully done this, I would love your tips).
Cobbled-together frequent flyer/reward points: I have flight reward points for several different airlines and while I don’t have enough with any one of them to get a return flight to the States, I am close to having enough to pay for a flight when I’m already in the U.S. Perhaps I can wait for one of those deals where you can buy double the points for a cheaper price.
Do you have any tried-and-true tips for finding low-priced flights or have you found a new trick? Share them with me and make my wedding wish come true!