How to find the Cheapest Flights on Skyscanner
April 15, 2017
The Cheapest Flights on Skyscanner
When planning a trip, I always find the cheapest flights on Skyscanner. They have the best deals and a user friendly, search platform that makes bargain hunting a breeze. This is important for a frequent traveler like me since I don’t have an off-shore bank account in the Cayman Islands. Therefore, I need to find the cheapest flights on Skyscanner (check them out here) if I want to make the most of my travel budget.
Besides, this money can be better spent, on food, accommodations, and sightseeing tours in my final destination. But, how do I find the cheapest airline tickets possible? It has taken many mistakes for me to discover 10 ways to find the cheapest flights on Skyscanner. But even if you don’t use a single tip listed in this post, you can still find great flight deals, everyday, on the Skyscanner website.
1. Set your destination to everywhere.
Gone are the days of manually searching for the cheapest airline and airport destinations possible. Skyscanner has remedied this situation by creating a feature known as the ‘everywhere’ search function. Simply enter your departure airport, followed by the word ‘everywhere’ in the arrival box. The search results will produce a series of arrival locations that descend, in order, from the cheapest to the most expensive flights available.
To find even cheaper flights, you can also select a month long date range from the departures date box. Once this option is selected, Skyscanner will find and highlight the cheapest days to fly within a particular month. FLEXIBILITY is key here, so if you have a set date and destination, this feature may not be helpful to you.
2. Setup email alerts for your favorite airlines.
Last minute deals can be a rarity nowadays, but they still exist if you know where to look. Snag these deals by signing up for newsletters from your favorite airlines. The extra email may be annoying to sift through, but it will be worth it when you find flash sales, new routes with special introductory rates, and low fares on last minute flights. Tuesday afternoon is when most of these sales come out since airlines definitively know if weekend flights will be fully booked. If there are empty seats, airlines will drop prices and inform subscribers first.
3. Fly when others don’t.
Most people don’t want to get up at the crack of dawn to catch there flight. Most people also do not want to board a flight in the middle of the night. But you’re not most people. You want to save money so you need to fly when other people don;t want to. This is why the tickets are cheaper, no one wants to fly at these inconvenient times. So, look for flights at meal times, at dawn or overnight. Generally speaking (there are exceptions to every rule), the cheapest days to fly are Tuesdays, Wednesday, and Saturdays while the most expensive days to fly are Fridays and Sundays since most people like to fly out on the weekend.
4. Buy your ticket at the BEST time.
Weekly, airline tickets are cheapest when bought between Monday night and Wednesday afternoon. This is because sales come out on Monday, are price matched early Tuesday, and then disappear on Thursday. Also make sure that you do not buy tickets more than 3 1/2 months in advance or within the 7 to 10 day period before your trip. This is when flights are usually at their most expensive. However, this time frame can vary, depending on where you are flying, so use this guide below to determine when to buy the cheapest tickets.
6 weeks in advance for U.S. domestic flights
11 to 12 weeks in advance for flights to the Caribbean
21 to 22 weeks in advance for flights to Europe
5. Fly on Inconvenient Flights.
Look, no one wants to sit through a 5 hour layover in a random airport, but that’s why non-stop flights are more expensive than connecting flights. Connecting flights are less convenient and take up a lot more time. So, if have you a flexible time schedule, book a flight with a layover (adding a stop or two can save you up to %50 on the cost of your flight). Also try and book flights that are from airport hubs. These airports have a large number of flights and as a result, offer more discounts.
6. Book your flight with a travel rewards card.
I personally use the Capital One, Venture card and the Chase, Sapphire Preferred card for all my daily purchases. Not only do these cards offer great sign up bonuses ($400 and $500 respectively),but purchases made on these cards accrue points that are redeemable for flight tickets.
Plus, when you redeem your points, there is no hassle. You can book a flight on any date, time, and airline that you wish. These rewards points also never expire, so you can use them whenever you like. But, for this strategy to work, you need to maintain your normal monthly budget and pay off your bill at the end of every month. This way, you can use your normal spending habits to purchase a plane ticket without accruing any additional, interest related fees.
7. Buy a One-way ticket.
This tip doesn’t usually work for me, but it may help you. Sometimes it can be cheaper to buy two one way tickets than it is to buy a single round trip ticket. This is because with a one way ticket, you are not locked into using the same airlines and airports for each leg of the flight. As a result, you can shop around and choose the cheapest airline and airport combinations for both your departing and arriving flights. Just another way to maximize your flight savings.
8. Use your refund.
Some airlines offer a free refund when you cancel more than 24 hours before your flight. Therefore, take advantage of this policy and monitor flight prices with Skyscanner price alerts. If you see the cost of a flight drop dramatically, cancel your original flight and book a new one. But before you do this, double check your airline’s cancellation policy and make sure that there is no additional fee for ticket refunds.
9. Search the actual airline’s site.
Some airlines have private sales that are only advertised on their company website. So, it’s a good idea to check your airline carrier, home website, before you purchase any flight tickets. You never know. You could end up paying a lot less for the same exact flight.
10. Change your point of sale (the place where a retail transaction is completed) location.
This one seems a bit confusing, but it’s not. The premise here is that airline ticket prices can vary depending on where you purchase your airline tickets, when the flight has international component. Therefore, buying an airline ticket in the United States can be more expensive than buying an airline ticket in Columbia, even if it is the exact same flight. To alter your point of sale origin, go into Google ITA, search for your flight details, and change the sales city to your destination. You will know you have done this correctly when the price appears in your destination’s currency. Use this tip and you will be surprised by how much money you can save.
Use these money saving tips to avoid paying full price for your flights. If you can do that, then you will be flying sky high with money to spare. But if you do nothing else, just stick with Skyscanner and you can’t go wrong (these tips are for travelers in the United States. Tip details may change when originating from another country).