Some time or another, we all have to fly; be it for business or pleasure. But while airline tickets tend to be pricey, there are a few simple tricks you can use to find good deals.
Many people have to fly frequently because of work. The good news is that the airline tickets don’t always have to be paid out of your own pocket if your work is requiring you to fly.
In many circumstances when a business requires an employ to travel, they will compensate the employee for the airfare themselves.
This is also true if you own your own business. You should be able to use your travel expenses as a tax write-off. Sometimes you can add a business purpose to your trip to make it, at least partially, tax-deductible.
Be sure and keep all your receipts and note the purpose of your trip.
Going Somewhere Popular? Try Visiting it Out of Season
A big part of what makes airfare so expensive is supply and demand. If the airlines know a lot of people are going to be going to a certain location at a certain time; they know they can raise their prices and get away with price gouging.
Beach locations during spring break are a good example. Popular beach spots will be far more expensive to travel to during this time because if they raise their prices, the seats on the planes will still be filled.
On the other hand, if they keep the prices that high around the entire year; they run the risk that people will stop buying tickets. When demand goes down, the price has to drop with it.
So if you plan to visit a spot that is popular but would like to save some money, plan to visit that location during an “off period.” As an example, say you’ve always wanted to visit New Orleans but you don’t really care one way or another about Mardi Gras. If that’s the case, then you’ll want to buy your tickets as far away from the famous celebration as possible. Plus, you won’t have to deal with the crowds.
Buy Tickets Far in Advance
Another trick you can use is buying tickets well before you need to use them. As the clock ticks down the last few weeks before a flight will take place, airlines tend to increase their prices higher and higher. They know last minute fliers are desperate and will have to pay any price.
But those who are still months away from flying still have lots of options available to them; so the airlines have to price their seats competitively or else their customers may go elsewhere.
Last Minute Deals
However, if airlines have seats left they may sell at discount rates a day or two in advance. This is a good trick for last minute spontaneous trips but not for planned vacations.
Frequent Flyer Miles
Sign up with airlines that give you rewards for flying with them. Or use credit cards that give you reward points. Be sure and read the fine print because some make the earned reward miles hard to use.
Travel on Off Days
If you travel from a Wednesday to Wednesday your rates will be cheaper than Saturday to Saturday; which is when most people fly.
Check prices with the airlines and also with travel sites such as cheap tickets, Orbitz and Expedia. Sometimes ticket prices vary greatly depending on where you buy.