By now you have come across guides by magazines and travel websites on how to book cheap flights. Suggestions range from accumulating airmiles to booking last minute.
I have also read some which mention just showing up at the airport.
Most of these impractical guides are compiled by writers who themselves will never use these tips.
Here is a quick guide from someone who looks for cheap flights as if his life depends on it. I will call it the ‘no-bullshit’ guide.
Due to my shocking low budget cheap flights are a godsend. Here are some of the flights I took.
Flew from India to Thailand and back at 125 USD(8000 INR)
Then from India to Sri Lanka and back at 120 USD(7500 INR)
Flew to Brazil at 690 USD(43,700 INR)
Here are some things I have learnt from spending hours with the love of my life – my laptop.
Flexibility is a great leverage if you want to save money. And that is most true when you want to travel.
Be flexible about dates and then destinations. For every factor that you are flexible with, the air fare will keep dropping.
This helped me get great deals for Thailand and Sri Lanka. Rather than flying from my home town Mumbai, I decided to fly from anywhere in India with the cheapest fares.
So I flew from Madurai to Colombo and similarly from Kolkata for Bangkok. This also helped me build in a few days into my itinerary to visit these cities.
Time Is Money
Nowhere is this adage more apt than while looking to save money while traveling. The more time you spend researching, the cheaper your airfare turns out to be.
So if you are planning a trip 4-5 months from now, no harm in starting research today. In a few weeks you will actually know more about budget tickets. And researching does take time.
But if you enjoy travel, you will enjoy the research too. It will introduce you to many new exciting destinations.
Go For It!
Right decision at the right time is equally important. Some people worry too much about visa, places to stay and as a result end up losing time.
Some articles suggest booking last minute flights, but that hasn’t worked for me. Plus, most of us have to apply for visa in advance for which you need flight tickets. Hence, last minute tickets are impractical(at least for me).
When you get a good deal, don’t let it go. Because prices can start rising immediately after.
You might also want to share your own tips & tricks so that all of us(myself included) can benefit.