Ask us – we’ll help you! Advice on how to find cheap airline tickets

8 dirty tricks to save money on a flight

Everyone you know has the mythical Vasily who flies from Moscow to Bangkok for 20 euros.

That’s very cheap. But you go to the ticket site – and everything is as expensive as always. To fly cheap, you have to be tricky. In this article we’ll tell you how to get the cheapest possible airfare.

1. Hide from surveillance.

You’re not faceless on the Internet. Search engines know what city you live in, what tickets you’re interested in and from what device you’re looking for them. For the same flight, a New Yorker will see a higher price than an Indian from Delhi.

If you are looking for tickets from your iPhone or iPad, the tickets will cost more for you than if you were looking from an Android. And if you enter the same search query twice in the aggregator, you’ll see the price increase with each query. You’re being provoked to buy right now so you don’t have to pay even more later.

These are all marketing tricks.

Outsmart the system: clear your cookies or set your browser to “incognito” mode. That way, the aggregator won’t know if you’ve searched for these tickets before.

To open a new page in incognito mode, use the following hotkeys: Ctrl + Shift + N in Google Chrome or Opera Ctrl + Shift + P in Mozilla Firefox or Internet Explorer Command + Shift + N in Safari

Better yet, use an anonymizer – a program that “hides” all your device and location data. Download Tunnelbear (you need to register) or go to an online anonymizer site like hideme.ru. Try playing with the IP address of your computer in the settings of the program: pretend that you live in South Asia or Latin America, and you will see lower prices.

Select your country from the drop-down menu in Tunnelbear, and turn the toggle switch to the ON position. This is what a connection from Mexico looks like.

Don’t forget about currency conversions. If the site shows the prices in pesos, then when you pay the money on your rouble card is converted twice: first into dollar, then into pesos. The bank will charge a fee for each transaction. Calculate whether such a purchase is profitable.

2. Do not be tied to a place.

It’s usually cheapest to fly from Moscow, because it’s a big hub and many airlines fly through it. But if you live in another city, don’t feel bad. Go to Moscow by train and fly safely from there.

Petersburgers are even luckier. You can easily get to Helsinki or Lappeenranta, where the European low-cost airlines fly.

You can also save on where you are flying. In Europe, the larger the airport, the more money it charges for aircraft maintenance. Choose small airports in non-capital cities. Fly to the Dutch town of Eindhoven is usually cheaper than to Amsterdam. When going to Germany, check prices for Frankfurt and Dusseldorf.

3. Choose in the budget sector

Airlines are divided into budget and more expensive. The best deals are with European low-cost companies. If you book in advance, you can fly from Helsinki to anywhere in Europe for 10 euros.

These tickets are often ignored by ticket aggregators because they have low fees and look more favorable than regular tickets with high fees. Search for cheap tickets yourself on airline websites or special resources: azair.eu, kiwi.com (formerly skypicker.com).

When buying a low-cost airline ticket, carefully read the rules of the airline. In exchange for the money you save you lose meals on board, the chance to cancel your ticket or change the date, and sometimes free baggage allowance. You must check in for the flight yourself via the Internet. At the airport this service is for a fee.

READ
How to book a hotel cheaper? 10 rules for saving money!

From Russia fly Wizz-Air and the first domestic low-cost airline “Pobeda”. To or from Italy you can fly with “Air Itali”, to Latvia – “Air Baltic”, to Germany – “Hermannwings” and “Air Berlin”, and the leader of Asian low-cost airlines – “Air Asia”.

4. Seize the moment.

Another inexpensive option is a charter flight. Charters fly only to certain destinations and only during the high season. These are the flights used by travel agencies as part of package tours. Sometimes the agency does not fill the plane completely – then the “last minute” tickets can be purchased at the last moment on special sites.

Charter flight can be at the last moment to another time. But the prices are even lower than the low-cost:

5. Take advantage of someone else’s mistake

Sometimes airlines offer cheap tickets not as part of the action, but by mistake. If you don’t book your trip well in advance (2-3 months beforehand) you may notice, for example, that Thursday flights are cheaper than Sunday flights. No one is safe from such mistakes.

Erroneous fares usually last only a couple of hours until they are corrected. But if you manage to book a ticket in that time, it is yours by right. So you should book such tickets immediately.

Never call the airline or agent for clarification unless you want the wrong fare to be covered. You are not risking anything. The worst that can happen is that the reservation will be canceled and you will get a refund.

Most often wrong fares can be found on aggregator sites, but sometimes they can also be found on airline websites. Always check that the total price for the group is not higher than the initial price per person multiplied by the number of people in your group.

The erroneous fares can be found at 100500miles.ru.

6. Complicate

On ticket aggregators, connecting flights are almost always cheaper than direct flights. This is because it is advantageous for airlines to fill flights that use their base airports (hubs). Aeroflot has Sheremetyevo, Pobeda has Vnukovo and Emirates has Dubai.

Sometimes you can get a significant discount by making several connections. Many aggregators allow you to create your own complex route. Experiment with flights to Stockholm via Helsinki and to Asia via Bangkok. Try taking a return ticket from a neighboring city or even country.

In 2014, you could fly Dublin – Mahe (Seychelles) – Mauritius – Paris for just 29,000 rubles:

Advanced travelers make extensive use of the stopover – a “layover” longer than 24 hours. This is an opportunity to see one more country on a budget. The stopover is arranged with the airline after you buy connecting tickets. Ask in advance if it is available on your flight. And don’t forget to check what documents you need to leave the airport at the stopover point.

Usually the stopover service is free. Moreover, you may be offered a hotel discount, free shuttle service, and other bonuses. There are free city tours at the Singapore airport for all passengers waiting for their flight.

7. Cut off the extra.

A trick for the trickiest: Buy a connecting ticket and just ignore the last segment. Let’s say you’re going to Estonia. Go to the aggregator and find that the flight Moscow – Oslo with a connection in Tallinn will be cheaper than the direct flight to Tallinn. Is it a shame? On the contrary, very convenient.

Ask at the desk at the airport to check your luggage to the transfer point or fly with hand luggage, and upon arrival in Tallinn quietly leave the airport. No one will stop you.

READ
7 ways to buy the cheapest tour! How and where to look

In order to use this tip, you need to know which airlines fly to the city you want and at which airports they are based. All this information is easily googled. For example, Bergamo Orio-al Serio airport is one of the main transfer hubs for Irish low-cost airline Ryanair, and Air Baltic is based in Riga. Let’s see how that works in practice.

You need to go to Riga. Direct flights are expensive:

Go to the Air Baltics website and see where you can fly cheaply from Riga:

Now look at ticket prices for each of the destinations you can fly to with Air Baltics. By the search method we find the most favorable variant:

Now you have a ticket to Budapest with a connection in Riga. Saved 2247 rubles.

Keep in mind that you can’t skip the first flight. This option is not suitable for roundtrip tickets either: after skipping any of the segments the ticket is canceled. Buy a return ticket separately.

8. Sign up for a loyalty program and earn miles

Airlines offer loyal customers bonuses. You’ll get miles and coupons for duty-free shopping, hotel stays and free tickets for signing up for loyalty programs.

Some airlines even give you a discount on your first flight if you book with the company. For example, EasyJet will discount up to 10 euros each if you buy tickets for 2-3 people.

How to buy cheap airline tickets

Buying cheap airline tickets is not that difficult if you know where to look and follow 16 simple rules! Our article is different from thousands of the same advice on travel sites because it is based on the principles of how airline companies and agencies search and sell airline tickets.

How to buy a cheap plane ticket

Airline tickets (Photo: Free-Photos | Pixabay license)

Where to look for cheap airline tickets

Before buying airline tickets, let’s understand where it’s best to look for them. There are a lot of services to search for airline tickets. Not everyone understands the difference between them, and even experienced travelers often confuse search engines and agencies, or think that you should buy tickets only from airlines.

Airlines

All airlines sell tickets through their websites. The exception is charter flights, and tickets for them can be purchased through travel and ticket agencies. It would be logical to assume that if the flight is operated by an airline, it’s cheaper to buy tickets directly from it. But this is not the case.

In addition to airline ticket sales, airlines have more important tasks to ensure flights: aircraft maintenance, payment of airport fares, staff salaries, etc. An airline cannot assume the financial risks of selling all the tickets for a flight.

Therefore in order to get money before the flight opening airlines sell part of the air tickets at considerable discount to large agencies and consolidators – wholesale ticket buyers. Consolidators resell tickets to small agencies.

It turns out that airlines and agencies may have different prices for the same tickets. The reason is that the agency’s main objective is to sell airline tickets, while the airline’s main objective is to pay off the flight. Therefore, the agency is ready to share the airline discount with the buyer and offer cheaper tickets. But the airline has no such practice, and even vice versa, as the plane fills up the price for the flight becomes higher.

Where better to buy plane tickets from an agency or airline

A ticket from the Kupibilet agency is 45% cheaper than on the S7 Airlines website.

Agencies

Tickets from agencies are often cheaper than from airlines, due to additional discounts from large airline suppliers (consalidators). Some agencies work with airlines directly and may buy airline tickets in bulk from airlines and give their additional discounts to customers.

READ
Airbnb.ru review and booking tips

Agencies may offer cheaper airfare by combining flights from different airlines: one-way fares may be cheaper with one airline and the return fare with another. Or split one big flight into 2 shorter ones with better fares.

Because of the high competition, agencies sometimes sell airline tickets without a surcharge, making up for the loss by selling additional services: insurance, car rentals, hotel reservations, excursions, etc.

Search engines

Airline ticket finders combine airlines and agencies. The main difference between the search is that it does not sell anything, but only compares prices, the purchase of tickets takes place on the website of the airline or ticket agency.

You specify your itinerary and travel dates, click “Find Tickets” and the search engine sends a query to airlines and agencies. The search then combines the data and ranks them by price and custom filters: date and time of departure, class of service, availability of connections, etc.

The search results will include classic airlines, low-cost carriers and even charters. Each airline’s ticket prices will be compared to the agency’s prices. The lower the airfare, the higher it is in the search.

No user data is transmitted in the search. The airline or agency only sees the search query, so the price will not change depending on the device and location of the user.

16 rules for buying cheap airline tickets

Rules are written based on the advice of experts in the travel business and developers of flight search engines.

1. Buy airline tickets before the season opens

According to the International Air Transport Association (IATA) all airlines fly in two seasons of flight schedules (navigation): summer and winter.

The summer season runs from the last Sunday in March to the last Sunday in October. To buy tickets at the lowest price for the summer season you must start looking for them in January and February.

The winter season begins the last Sunday in October and lasts until the last Sunday in March. Buy cheap tickets for winter in August and September.

Avianiti news can tell you about airline flight schedules for summer and winter.

2. Hot airline tickets before you fly out

If your bags are packed and you don’t care where you’re flying to, check prices a few days before departure. Just before departure, the agencies sell tickets at the lowest price. The cheapest deals are usually only for charter flights, during the high season to popular tourist destinations. To recoup your expenses, the agencies sell tickets at cost. Last minute tickets sell only one way.

You can buy very cheap last minute airline tickets for charters to the following destinations:

    (summer) (winter) (summer)
    (winter) (winter) (winter)

Cheap Flights on a Charter

3 If the euro goes up in price, buy before Wednesday.

The euro exchange rate for international airline tickets is set weekly on Wednesdays. Tracing the exchange rate of the tickets yourself is simple. Look at the Central Bank exchange rate from Tuesday to Wednesday, round it up to 50 cents. If you see that the euro exchange rate has increased, then do not hesitate and buy a ticket before the end of Tuesday.

4. Pay for tickets of foreign airlines in the currency

For flights on foreign airlines it is more advantageous to pay in currency if you have a bank card in euros or dollars. To avoid disadvantageous payment system conversions, check the price of airline tickets in currency. On Avianiti you can select the currency in the upper right corner of the air ticket search.

READ
Tinkoff All Airlines Credit Card - to register or not? My review

5. Buy airline tickets for the days adjacent to the holidays

Airlines and agencies make the most money on holidays. If you buy airline tickets in advance, there are no discounts for the holidays, only an increasing factor. This is due to high demand – even the most expensive airline tickets will be sold out.

If you want to buy cheaper airline tickets for the holidays, write an application for vacation and shift the flight dates by 3 days, the tickets will be cheaper. Even for nearby holiday dates you need to buy tickets in advance: if you want to fly in December and January buy tickets in October, for May holidays buy tickets in March.

Expensive Holiday Ticket Calendar
  • December 30 to January 8 (New Year and Christmas)
  • February 23-24 (Defender of the Fatherland Day)
  • March 8-10 (International Women’s Day)
  • 1-5 May (Spring and Labour Day)
  • 9 to 12 May (Victory Day)
  • June 12 (Russia Day)
  • November 2 to 4 (National Unity Day)

6. Fly lowcosters

Lowcosters are airlines with cheap tickets and paid extras. Low-cost airline tickets include only the flight and carry-on luggage. Low-cost airlines usually charge a fee to choose your seat and check in at the airport. To understand better the pricing and rules of low-cost airlines we recommend that you read about low-cost airlines.

It is advantageous to buy tickets with low-cost airlines; you can fly within Russia and abroad for only 1,000 rubles. Even if you pay extra services of budget airlines, the flight will be 2-3 times cheaper than the classic airlines.

Cheap Lowcost Airline Tickets

In order to buy cheap tickets at minimal prices, we recommend to follow promotions and news of airlines. Cheap airline tickets appear before the opening of a new flight season, new flights, and during promotional events. Popular low-cost airlines in Russia: “Pobeda” and “Azimut

7. Fly by charter

A charter is a chartered flight that is not accounted for in airport schedules and takes off at a free time between regular flights. Charter flights are ordered by agencies, so you can’t buy charter tickets from an airline. Charter flights fly only to popular tourist resorts in high season. To learn more about the pros and cons of such flights, read what are charter flights.

8. Check one-way and round-trip prices

When buying roundtrip airfare, check the cost of flights in 2 separate ways: First look at the one-way price, and then at the return price. It often happens that if you book flights in 2 separate purchases, it is cheaper. This is explained by the fact that airlines and agencies may apply different rates for buying 1 and 2 airline tickets. Be sure to check out this tip, it can save you 15% on airfare.

9. Check neighboring departure dates.

When searching for airfare, always check airfare prices for neighboring dates. Even if the search shows higher prices on the calendar for neighboring dates, the airfare may be loaded with a more attractive price after a new request.

10. Fly on flights with connections

Transfers can save a lot on airfare. On long-haul flights it is a good way to take a break from flying or even to make a stopover – an overnight stay at a good hotel at the expense of the airline. On short flights, you can dock very cheap low-cost low-cost flights. We recommend reading the note on how to fly with connections.

11. Add another flight (Hidden City Ticketing)

Hidden City Ticketing is a popular smart trick among European travelers. You can add another flight to your itinerary and the price of the ticket will decrease due to the change of fare.

For example: you need to fly from Moscow to Riga; adding a flight from Riga to Prague to your search results in lower ticket price. As a result, you fly from Moscow to Riga with cheaper airfare, and you just don’t show up for the next flight.

READ
Your Money Abroad. How to withdraw cash, pay by card and exchange

This tiphack works mostly on foreign destinations and only on one-way flights. Since the return ticket will be burned for not showing up for one segment. It’s best to fly with carry-on luggage, or to warn the front desk that you need to get luggage during your layover.

Airline tickets on a complicated route

Use a complicated itinerary in your search for these tickets.

12. Keep an eye out for promotions and specials

Airlines and agencies periodically run promotions and specials on airline tickets to promote a new destination and sell out tickets on unbooked flights. In order not to miss out on airline promotions, follow them on airline and agency websites, add promotions and special offers to bookmark on Avianiti and subscribe to the newsletter.

13. Use airfare monitoring

Airline ticket finders offer a useful service – monitoring airline prices, which many people are not aware of. Price monitoring will help you be the first to know about price changes and the appearance of cheap airline tickets. As soon as the search will find cheap air tickets for your route or the price will change – you will receive an email. With a subscription to price monitoring you can forget about daily checks of airline prices.

14. Use free air ticket booking

Airlines and ticket agencies allow you to book airline tickets free of charge for 24 hours. If you find a good offer, but are not ready to pay for it immediately, book it. The airline ticket can be bought while you decide, and you can always cancel the reservation.

15. Consider the cost of luggage

If you fly with luggage, compare airline tickets in the search at once, including luggage. Buy luggage when booking your ticket or later on the airline’s website, at the airport luggage rates may be higher than when paying online.

16. Take advantage of benefits

Citizens of Russia can use the state program of subsidized airline tickets. Significant discounts on airline tickets are available for certain citizens from different regions of the country. Subsidized air tickets are available only for flights within Russia. There are tickets for tourist destinations, long-haul flights and hard-to-reach regional destinations. These tickets are sold only by airlines.

In addition to subsidized air tickets you can take advantage of preferential flat fares from the airlines “Russia” and “Aeroflot”. Flat fares sell airline tickets with a fixed price for all without restrictions. The price of airline tickets does not change from the date of purchase and is valid throughout the year.

A few useful tips in conclusion

  • If you’re flying on vacation, don’t forget to take into account the “tourist peaks” in each country. Do not get stuck on one destination, there are always cheaper options and not at all worse.
  • Do not buy tickets on social networks and through suspicious sites, so as not to get scammers. Buy tickets only on the official websites of known airlines and agencies.
  • In publishers and forums, they share mistakes in booking systems for very cheap tickets at non-existent fares. If you are planning to fly, it is best not to buy airline tickets at erroneous fares. Such tickets are likely to be cancelled or you may be denied the flight already at the airport.

Questions and comments

Share your experience of searching for the cheap air tickets, ask questions in the comments.

Don’t forget to bookmark this article and share it with your friends – it is updated regularly!

Rating
( No ratings yet )
Like this post? Please share to your friends:
noosa-heads.net
Leave a Reply

;-) :| :x :twisted: :smile: :shock: :sad: :roll: :razz: :oops: :o :mrgreen: :lol: :idea: :grin: :evil: :cry: :cool: :arrow: :???: :?: :!: