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Google Flights

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Google Flights

The cost of airline tickets is often an important part of a travel budget. As a traveler who leaves as often as possible, I am constantly looking for a cheaper plane ticket that will allow me to fly and discover a new region of the globe.

With my simple $ 30 that I put in an envelope a week (see my article on How to travel often without breaking the bank ), I can usually buy 3 flights a year to different destinations. But to succeed in this challenge, I am constantly looking for good deals that allow me to pay for my plane ticket at the lowest possible price.

Here are some tips that have saved me thousands of dollars over the years and have allowed me to leave more often or longer.

** If you want to travel longer and you want to know many ways to earn money on the trip, I suggest the  ebook of a colleague  (especially at 9 euros for the purchase during the first visit on the site). 

 Do not forget to leave insured. I have a complete travel insurance file right here  where I suggest good companies and where you will find discounts .  

When and for when to buy his ticket?
1. Buy your ticket in advance
Many believe that buying your ticket at the last minute is a guarantee of a better price. In fact, this belief is all wrong . That of buying too long in advance is too. But when is the ideal?

In fact it depends on the destinations. An article in the Press last spring had caught my attention. This article is based on a Cheapair study that did an analysis for flights from the United States. This seems similar for Canada.

According to this study, for Europe, the best time to find a cheaper ticket would be 151 days before departure. For Asia it would be 129 days, the Caribbean 101 days, Latin America 80 days and domestic flights 54 days . This gives some idea of ​​when the chances of finding the best price are higher. Prices tend to rise sharply in the two weeks prior to departure.

2. Be flexible on dates
If you are flexible on dates , you will be more likely to find a good rate. Looking at the chart on Google flight , you can easily see the price fluctuation according to the departure and arrival dates.

dates plane ticket cheaper

By adjusting the dates of a few days and the number of days of travel, I was able to find a ticket for less than $ 800 for Colombia, despite the beginning of the summer school holidays. Best of all, if you're flexible over the year, you'll have the chance to save even more by going on the best promotions.

3. Be flexible on the destination
Not having a specific destination in mind can also save a lot of money for flights. When I have my vacation dates, I always look at the world map on Google Flight that displays prices for different destinations. In this way, I look at the most advantageous destinations that interest me of course. That's how I flew to Ecuador last year where there were good prices for my dates.

google flight cheaper plane ticketgoogle flight cheaper plane ticketgoogle flight cheaper plane ticket

4. Be flexible on the number of stopovers, flight time and flight times
Often, the cheapest prices are for flights with stops and a longer travel time. If time does not scare you and you have the time and energy to do it, you can save several hundred dollars for the same destination.

to sleep in an airport
Nothing prevents to rest a little at the airport

A Montreal-Cancun flight that is only 5 hrs from Montreal, with a stopover in the US, usually costs me around $ 400. I already had it for less than that. The time to get to the destination is longer, but for such a small price, it's worth the trouble of losing a few hours at the airports. A flight with a non-ideal departure and arrival time is also cheaper, of course.

5. Traveling out of season
It can not be said enough, traveling in low season saves a lot . Both once on site for accommodation, but especially for the price of airline tickets. The holiday season, spring break and summer vacation are the worst times to travel. It's expensive and there are holidaymakers everywhere. Try if you can avoid these busy times of the year.

From the end of January, prices usually drop until the third week of February . Then it goes down again in April until June . The other best time to fly, especially for Asia, is in the fall before the holidays and after Labor Day. In October-November, it is possible to find very interesting prices.

In summer, sun destinations often have a price drop . So traveling to Mexico for example during the summer allows you to find flights at prices that easily reach double during the cold winter.

travel out of season
The risks of traveling out of season

6. Leaving and returning in the middle of the week
Avoid departures and arrivals on weekends . Fewer people travel on weekdays, so prices are milder. Departures on Tuesdays and Wednesdays are the best choices to save money.

Where to find a cheaper flight?
7. Check with flight comparators
To find the best possible price, comparators are essential in your research process. There are several online so do not hesitate to try a few to compare and find the one you feel most comfortable with and who is best suited to your needs.

For flights from Montreal, I always look first with Google Flight that I find very useful and easy to use. Then, I compare with a comparator such as Skyscanner  which often allows me to find the best possible prices.

gf comparator

Feel free to sign up for email alerts to track weekly price changes .

8. Compare on airline sites
When a price seems interesting, have a look at the airline's website directly . Sometimes you will still find better rates.

9. See the promotion of airlines
SpecialsIf you are flexible, take some time to search the airline sites . They often post promotions for different destinations on specific dates. Again, this flexibility saves you a lot.

10. See with low cost airlines
In some parts of the world, low cost companies exist . These companies allow you to travel at sometimes ridiculous costs . In Europe, you can find tickets for twenty euros with RyanAir . A former roommate from Ireland had found a Dublin-Barcelona flight for 15euros.

On the other hand, these flights often leave airports located at the periphery and certain costs are not included in the tariffs. Always check that taxes and other fees such as luggage are included . Otherwise you could have some unpleasant surprises. In Asia, AirAsia is the equivalent of RyanAir in Europe.

11. Take a flight to the hubs of the mainland and then watch with the local companies
Taking a flight directly to the destination country is not always the best thing to do , especially if the country is not a top destination.

For example, when I travel to Asia, I usually take a return ticket to Bangkok. This hub of Asia often has very interesting prices running around $ 1000, or even lower sometimes. Once in Bangkok, Asia is at your fingertips.

Then check with the local Low Cost companies that will get you to your destination for less. For example, no need to join Laos directly from Montreal (about $ 1600). Take a Montreal-Bangkok flight will return to you off-season at about $ 1000. Another Bangkok-Vientiane flight with Lao Airlines will cost you $ 90. You will save almost $ 500 by doing so.

bangkok airport
Bangkok the hub of Southeast Asia

Tip: Leave a lot of time, see a day between your regular and local flights to get to your final destination. Often, it is not refundable if you arrive late on your first trip.

12. For Asia, watch with Chinatown agencies
When I plan to leave for Asia, I always look with Chinatown agencies . They often have access to good fares to these destinations. Do not hesitate to compare them , they do not always show the same prices.

13. Join Yulair
yulairFor Canadians, the Yulair site is great . This guy is constantly looking for the best rates from Montreal, Toronto, Vancouver and even from Plattsburgh and Burlington to the US. He posts on his social networks and on his blog his finds. With his facebook alert, I was able to know about a problem with the airline company Delta and get a crazy price of $ 468 round trip to South Korea. A hell of a bargain and a great trip in sight for the fall.

14. From another airport
For some destinations, it may be interesting to leave from another airport than that of his hometown. Also look for departures from respectable remote airports from your home .

I have already left Burlington two hours from Montreal for a flight to Florida. From Plattsburg, great low prices (under $ 500) for Colombia are posted regularly. It may be worth 1hrs30 drive to save $ 200-300 on the purchase of the plane ticket.

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