How to Book Flights

“Flights are so expensive, how can you afford it?”

I’ll first start off by saying your exactly right.  Flights are expensive.  However, flights from the United States to other countries are not!  Once you get outside of the states you will realize cheap flights do exist and booking flights isn’t going to cost you an arm and leg like it does to fly domestic in America.

I once bought a roundtrip ticket a couple of months in advance for my two friends out of Chicago to Bangkok for $630! I flew my mom to Bali roundtrip for her birthday from LA for $600.  They do exist, you just have to know how and where to look.  And ill mention, when you travel like me, and every single flight is a one way….they are even cheaper.

I’m going to list some tips on where to look and how to book flights to make sure your not spending your entire budget on flights.

First off, ill start by saying that if you are in the United States, you need to look for your tickets out of main hub airports, regardless of where your from.  Main International airlines have super cheap flights out of JFK, Chicago O’Hare, Dallas, Los Angles, Seattle and San Fransisco.  Depending on where you’re wanting to fly to, Miami has cheap flights to some places in Europe.  The trick is, if you are from Missouri, like me, a flight to Italy from St.Louis is going to be insanely expensive simply because St. Louis is not a main hub for big international flights.  And since your going to Europe, JFK would be your best bet to look for tickets. But then you have to get to JFK….well thats no problem at all.  You can always find super cheap flights from anywhere to JFK or LGA, and I guarantee the price of your flight from your hometown to New York will still be cheaper than booking it from your closet hometown airport all the way to your destination in Europe.

There are tons of low-budget airlines that do very cheap International flights depending on where you want to go.  Since I travel by buying only one way tickets, it’s fairly cheap for me.  The most I have ever spent on a ticket in all my travels in around $550.  Everything else has been around $250 or below.

My main trick is I try to make it where I don’t have to fly.  To be honest, I hate flying.  It gives me anxiety.  So anytime I can take a train or bus, I take full advantage of that.  If you’re in Europe, there is no need to fly.  Unless you want hop to certain countries that aren’t close to each other.  But if that is the case, you can always find fairly cheap flights for under $100.  Check out RyanAir, EuroWings, EasyJet, or WizzAir for low-budget flights anywhere in Europe.

But what if you are in Europe and want to go to Asia? Or vice versa?  If tickets are too expensive to your final destination, I buy my ticket to Dubai.  Dubai is the biggest international hub airport in the world.  And it always has super cheap connecting flights to just about anywhere.   Dubai now does non stop flights to South America as well, which defiantly comes in handy.  If Dubai doesn’t have cheap flights for some reason, check out Doha.  Qatar sometimes runs sales on their International flights.  Which makes it nice to fly with one of the best airlines in the world.  Europe now has a low-budget airline called Norwegian air.  They only fly to certain airports, but Bangkok is one of them from ether Denmark or Sweden,.  If you look at the right time, you can find tickets for $200.  Once you’re in Bangkok.  SE Asia is all at you fingertips!

When using third-party website to book flights, I always like to do price comparisons with a couple different websites.  When it comes to actually booking a ticket, I have learned booking through the actual airlines website is gong to be your best bet.  I don’t like using third-party websites to book flights just in case something happens and I have to change or cancel my trip. Third party websites either do not do refunds or charge an absorb the amount of money to change your flight.  Most airline websites will refund some of your money back or charge less to change your flight details.

Below I have listed some of my top third-party airline comparisons.

www.skyscanner.com (allows you to look at an entire month for the cheapest price)

www.momondo.com

www.kayak.com

www.cheapoair.com

When you are booking flights, always remember to fly throughout the week, never on weekends. Prices are always higher Saturday and Sundays compared to Tuesdays and Wednesdays.  Flights will always be cheaper either early in the morning or really late at night.  I always say to never check flight prices on a weekends or around a holiday, prices seem to always be higher than looking on a Tuesday evening.  Try to book your ticket within 2 weeks of your departure date, anytime after that prices will be really high.  And of course the more advance you book your ticket, the better chance you will get to finding a good deal.


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