My Top 8 Tips for Booking Cheap Flights

8 top tips for booking cheap flights

Flight tips on Don’t Stop Living: My 8 top tips for booking cheap flights!

If you travel a lot, like me, you’ll end up taking a load of flights to save time, but it doesn’t always save you money if you don’t go about it the right way. With 7 continents and 70 countries under my belt now, I’m here to bring you my top tips for booking cheaper flights. Yes, I know it’s been done before on countless websites, but these are my tips for booking cheap flights!
1. Fly Tuesday
Eh? Yes you should arrange to fly on a Tuesday – everybody knows that flying on a Tuesday is almost always cheaper for some reason. If you have no set plans get your flights booked for a Tuesday and you’ll save a lot! Don’t believe me? Have a check here: Cheap flights (compare your Tuesday to a Friday and BANG!)
travelling on a tuesday is better - cheap flight tips

Travel Tuesday! Empty flights, less passengers, bingo you’ve got a cheaper flight!

2. Don’t Be Strict, Be Flexible
Travel doesn’t have time for strict people. If you can’t get a seat on that 9.30 am flight that you wanted, why is it the end of the world? Just fly at 5am, or at 12 noon and honestly flying at off peak times is mostly cheaper! Be as flexible as you can and get on the cheapest flight that goes to where you want.
3. Consider other airports
I’m based in Hong Kong at the moment while I jaunt around the world. That doesn’t mean I have to book all my flights out of Hong Kong Airport. I often use Shenzhen or Macao which are both close by – it really pays to look around for alternative airports to fly out of! When I went to Slovenia in 2008, it was cheaper to fly to Trieste in Italy and cross the border from there so I did. Similarly when I went to Venice, I flew into Treviso and got the bus to Venice. Consider the overland options too and just look at a map to see what other airports nearby can serve as an alternative.
flying into Treviso instead of Venice a lifestyle of travel

Drifting to sleep on a flight to Treviso a few years back – I used it as my gateway to Venice and got a cheap flight for $5 US!

4. Check Mutliple Flights Websites
When you’re booking check more than one website. The same flight might be cheaper on Expedia than it is on Skyscanner. Beat The Brochure is a great site for cheap deals and don’t neglect airlines official sites either.
5. Sometimes booking a return is CHEAPER!!
Are you kidding me? No, I’m not. I once wanted to fly from Sao Paulo to Johannesburg and couldn’t find a cheap one way ticket, so I randomly searched for a return instead (without ever intending to use the return) and it was CHEAPER than the price I was quoted for a single. This is quite simply ridiculous but it happens sometimes. I had a ticket for my return flight but never used it as I was heading to Australia next…
booking a return flight can be cheaper

My jaw dropped when I saw the price of this flight ($1,200 AUD) in 2011 from Sao Paulo to Johannesberg. After searching online for an hour I finally booked a return for less than $1,000 Australian Dollars. Strange, but true!

6. Don’t pick your seat
Some airlines charge you more to pick your seat. Don’t give them extra money. Sit anywhere. Remember fate puts you next to people on planes. You don’t know who you will meet.
7. Don’t pack more than 15 kilograms.
I hate the way aeroplane companies always put a surcharge if you go over the limit for your baggage. I always refuse to pay and simply take the extra stuff out of the bag, put more clothes on in front of them, fill my pockets and put the rest in my hand luggage. NEVER pay a fee for excess baggage. Pet hate of mine. These days I never pack more than 15 kilograms anyway – lesson learned, problem solved! * Excludes my Antarctica trip where I packed a bit more 😉 When you’re booking your flight always select the option where you don’t pay anything for your bag (if this means selecting minium size of bag then do it – you won’t need more than 15 kg)
cut out paying excess baggage

Oops! My backpack (including a tent) once looked like this. It has excess baggage written all over it. Cut your weight down to less than 15 kilograms, trust me and when you’re booking the flight don’t pay extra fees!

8. Don’t keep checking the same flights
If you have an idea of the flight you want, check it once and leave the screen open while quickly checking other flights. Don’t close the screen and check it again. The more times you check a flight, the more clever these companies are, the computer systems know what flights are being checked and they will bump up the price. Then when you book it, they will knock the price back down. If you have an idea of the flight you want, find that cheap price and book it straight away.
Jonny Blair with a free beer on Singapore airlines

Loving the travel lifestyle – this flight included free beer. Safe travels and that’s my top 8 tips for cheaper flights!

So that’s my 8 top tips for booking cheap flights, there are a load of other tips of course, but I stick by these ones and normally nail the good deals! Safe travels guys! If you want to read more of my endless money saving tips, head to my weekly Monday’s Money Saving Tips pages which are jam packed with top tips!!
PS – I also recently wrote about the world’s worst airlines in this post: shit airlines!
Join 15,017 Monthly Readers! If you enjoyed this article and LOVE travel and SAVING money, get e-mail updates from Don’t Stop Living – a lifestyle of travel! (It’s Free) 😉 Jonny

12 thoughts on “My Top 8 Tips for Booking Cheap Flights

  • These are great tips Jonny. Michael and I fly a lot (as you do when you are a perpetual travelers!) and finding ways to cut down the cost is a big thing for us. We save so much on accommodation costs by house sitting so flying is really the most expensive part for us. Im going to try out some of these tips and see how much we can save!

    Thanks Jonny 🙂

  • Good advice! I find it so ridiculous that buying a return is sometimes cheaper; it occasionally makes me angry! And yes, the no more than 15kg is great advice too…not only for flying, but for travelling in general!

  • Thanks for the comment Sam – these were actually just a few tips I drafted up quickly – I’ve a ton more and normally include them on my regular Monday feature: Safe travels, Jonny

  • Thanks for the comments Nicole – haven’t done house sitting yet as I tend to stay only 1-3 days in each place, but it’s one for the future for me when I travel long term full time again, I’m currently based in Hong Kong temporarily. Any ways to save money on flights are good – I forgot to mention privilege cards for airlines which are a good way to save money and build up points. Safe travels, Jonny

  • Nice post Jonny!
    You can also add one more point about clearing your cache of the web browser before searching your flights online.
    Its a great point which will help you get Cheap flights tickets online.

  • Really? Actually, I didn’t know about the ‘Tuesday’ thing in terms to booking. I have flown thrice to Asia and even get cheap flights but I was so blind regarding the ‘flying on Tuesday’. Thanks for this great info.

  • Transportation is the major expense in any travel so people always try for effective money saving tips . The above points are really considered very well. Also use of online ticket booking and comparison help us lot to save money.

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