Everyone has their ‘top tips’ to securing the best value flight, hotel or holiday package online. And while many of these do work, sometimes it pays to go direct to the source.
Online travel agent Webjet has just released their insider’s guide to finding the best deal in the simplest way, and, unlike some of the more obscure suggestions I’ve read, these sound pretty legit.
If you’re looking to make a saving on your next overseas trip, here’s what you’ll need to do:
1. Consider alternative airports
Airfares can be much more expensive when flying into large international airports, usually due to airport taxes and airline capacity, so try comparing flights to other second tier airports surrounding your desired end destination. For example, you could save several hundred dollars by flying into Amsterdam instead of London and the savings will more than cover your ground transportation. This is especially relevant during busy periods such as festivals. For Oktoberfest, a cheaper alternative could be flying to Memmingen and getting a bus to Munich rather than flying direct to Munich.
2. Break up a long-haul flight
Rather than booking one long-haul return flight, it may work out cheaper to book multiple one-way flights. This is also a fantastic way to see another country (or city) at a small cost and make the most of your trip. For example, if you’re flying from Sydney to Europe, booking as a one way from Sydney to Abu Dhabi, Hong Kong or Singapore and then another one way to the destination may work out significantly cheaper, particularly if choosing local budget airlines.
3. Mix ‘n’ match your flights
If you’re not loyal to one airline, you can often save a good amount of money by flying more than one airline – especially if you’re flying within Australia, Fiji, New Zealand and certain South East Asian destinations. Choose one airline for your departing flight, and another for your return journey, and you can often be amazed by the savings you can have on the exact same leg.
4. Plan ahead
Planning ahead is easier said than done, but it really does pay to keep an eye out in advance – cheaper flights always sell out fast. Sign up to deal alert emails, travel related Facebook groups, or consider using an online tool like Webjet’s Deal Finder. This tool shows you cheap airfares every day, up to six months in advance for both international and domestic flights. If there’s a cheaper fare available on a different day or with a different airline, you can find it.
5. Be open to new places
Just because your friends all love travelling to Bali, Vietnam or the US doesn’t mean you have to go there too. Be open to new places and new experiences, including those you may not ordinarily pick, and you might be surprised at just how amazing your holiday can be. Picking a left-field destination, such as the amazing Georgia, can open a world of experiences at a price just cannot find in the more mainstream destinations.
Photo by Elizabeth Camp