how to book the cheapest flights | 5 easy steps!
Easily the top question I get on a regular basis is “Bryan, how do you afford all of these flights?” Well, as a seasoned traveller I have spent years learning and refining how to get the cheapest flights on the market at any given time. I now refuse to spend more than £100 on a set of return flights and regularly spend in the region of £15-30 on European flights! That is cheaper than an average weekly spend on fuel for your car! Like the good guy I claim to be I am about to spill my secrets so you can jet off around the world for less than your phone bill.
So, the secret lies entirely around Skyscanner.com
Feel free to go on to www.skyscanner.com and follow along the steps with me, don’t worry – you won’t be locked in to anything. So if you have stumbled across this post amidst the throes of wanderlust you can follow along to see just how easy it is to travel for cheap!
Know your starting location! Depending on where you live there may be multiple airports within range. There are three airports within a 2 hour driving distance from my house, each with their own specialities and price ranges. I will simply pick Dublin International Airport to use for demonstrative purposes, but in order to get accurate results you will need to be running several search queries from each starting airport.
Don’t have an ending location! This may sound ludicrous… but bare with me.
Have as wide a date range as possible for your current situation. Many people love to set a date and stick with it. They never take the time to search around their desired dates and realize they could be having exactly the same trip for half the price!
So, now all you have to do is hit search and results will come flooding in.
Okay, so all these results are ridiculous… In fact, according to my search I can visit over 28 countries for less than £100 this year. Go ahead, do a search for yourself and you will be amazed at how cheap travel is if you open your possibilities as wide as can be.
Now, to understand how to select the best deals…
First, pick yourself a country. I like the look of Bulgaria (I have never been and I hear the locals are splendid!) ALl you need to do is click the little blue arrow and you will get a drop down menu of possible airports to fly in to. Obviously pick the cheapest one!
In our case “Sofia”. Now, you will be given the cheapest month to fly in and out of Sofia and up to date prices for every day in that month.
Note that Skyscanner has kindly taken us to the cheapest month possible, in my case December 2016, for my given starting and ending locations. If you are a little more time constrained than I feel free to use the arrows to cycle through the various months, you are still guaranteed to find the best deal out there!
Now, take a look at the two different calendars on screen. The dates on the left represent your departing flights, the dates on the right represent return flights and the prices clearly demonstrate how much you will pay for a single flight on that day. Select a date from the left, a date from the right and Voilà, you have just bagged yourself a return flight to an unknown land for the cheapest possible price.
Now, prices on the initial search can be slightly inaccurate by a few pounds (or whatever currency unit you use) so just check to make sure things are still within your budget. As you can see the overall price is going to be £7 more than was initially quoted… I have no idea why, but I don’t really care as I will happily cough up an hour of minimum wage work extra for 9 days in Bulgaria!
Now, click on the large green “Show Flights” button at the bottom of the page. (Don’t worry you won’t be committed to anything!) And you will be given this screen.
It shows all the possible flight combinations from your start to end point with the cheapest one at the top. Now, if all seems well click the large green “Select” button on the right and you will be taken to this screen:
It gives a detailed breakdown of your flights, any layovers and the price. All that is left is to check everything is to your liking and click the Green “Select” button beside your final price. This will take you to the booking agency or airline operating your flight where you can finalize and pay for your booking.
Top Tip: Make sure you check the final price again on the third party website. As always it is possible that prices have fluctuated during this process as supply and demand changes.
I have just bestowed upon you one of my most valuable travel trips for return journeys. Check back here every week for another little nugget of wisdom. For now… Go on, get out there and see the world!
If this article has helped you feel free to share it with your friends to give them some travel inspiration! And do let me know in the comments below how many countries you could visit for under £100.
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