Sunseekers are finding it more difficult to snap-up a cut-price flight deal amid cuts to airline schedules and rising travel costs. But there are some tricks that holidaymakers can use to keep costs down when booking a last-minute trip.
An online search system has been developed to save customers time and money when searching for flights by automatically scouring countless airfare sites to find the best flight deals in real-time. Naveen Dittakavi, founder and chief executive of Next Vacay, has revealed his own money-saving hacks to help keep holiday costs under control.
Here are his top tips for getting the best-value deal from an airline:
Try to fly Tuesday-Thursday
For summer vacations, book travel around six weeks to two months out. Any closer and those prices tick up, or worse, they might sell out, since plenty of airlines are already struggling with the overload of travellers this year. Demand has been soaring for summer travel, so use time wisely to watch price trends and get an idea of what’s a good price for a chosen destination.
When looking for flights, avoid flying on weekends. Tuesday to Thursday are the better days to fly, but also avoid flying during peak season, because summer is obviously going to be more expensive when flight prices are bumped up.
Book through an airline rather than a third-party site
Naveen Dittakavi said: “The problem with booking through sites, is if you ever have a problem or challenge with the flight, you have to go through a third party to resolve it. An airline is more likely to have a team to quickly deal with the issue either in-person or via a call service.
“With a third party, it’s likely the best option they could give is to refund you, which isn’t helpful if you’re just looking to get to a destination. The airline, on the other hand, will do everything in its power to get you to your destination.”
There are many variables that go into what city will be the cheapest place to fly into at any given time – from seasonality to flight time. When looking for tickets, keep these things in mind, and if you’re flexible, you can adjust plans accordingly to make sure you find the cheapest flights anywhere.
Try to get free perks rather than pay for extra costs
Naveen Dittakavi added: “Again, you need to pick the right flights to increase your chances. Flights that depart on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Saturdays are the lowest volume business travel days.
“Early morning flights are usually packed with business travellers, so it’s unlikely that you would be able to get a free upgrade here. Choosing to fly on national holidays or flights in the middle of the night are he best options to avoid the business travel rush.
“Since these types of flights are usually full of families, you’ll have an even better chance of landing a free upgrade to business class if you’re in a couple or flying solo.”
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