For most travelers, the flight cost is a huge part of your budget, so you want to find the best deal. But unless you know where to shop, buying last minute means you will pay the price.
In fact, within the last 20 days before takeoff, prices rise 3% per day.
If you know where and how to shop last minute, however, you can actually end up getting a better deal than if you had bought in advance. Searching in the right places and looking for deals on last minute flights to anywhere in the world.
In this article, we’ll run through some of the best ways to get last minute flight deals without breaking the bank.
Tips For Getting Last Minute Flights to Anywhere
There are a few key points that will make it easier to find good deals on last minute flights to anywhere in the world.
First, remaining flexible is key. Consider being a bit flexible with your dates, such as flying out a day or two earlier, or returning a bit later than you planned.
While you are flexible with the days that you’re flying on, also be flexible with the hours. You may not be super excited to take a red-eye or have a longer stop-over, but these undesirable flight times often mean deep discounts.
If you can’t be flexible on the timing, consider some flexibility on the destination. There are so many amazing places to travel. If you have your mind set on one particular destination and there aren’t any last minute deals for the dates you want, you will end up having to pay more for your flights.
Being flexible with your destination means you can discover a new, unique place that you might never have otherwise considered.
Travel In Small Groups
It is a lot easier to find incredible deals on last minute flights to anywhere when you have a small group. That is because sometimes airlines are just trying to sell off one or two seats on a plane.
The more people you are traveling with, the fewer last minute deals will accommodate the size of your group.
Be Prepared to Buy
When you are looking for last minute deals, you often won’t have a lot of time to think through your purchase. You need to be ready to take that leap and buy your flight on short notice.
Have all your necessary documents, such as passports and credit cards, ready so you can purchase the flight you want the moment you find it. If you delay, it might get snapped up by another lucky traveler.
With these general tips in mind, we will move onto the tools and tips you can use to find the best last minute deals.
Keep an Eye on Airline Alerts
There are a bunch of ways you can keep an eye on your favorite airlines, making sure that you are among the first to know about any new deals.
Follow them on social media, especially Twitter. Most airlines will occasionally tweet out information about sales on last minute seats. In these cases, it is first come first served, so make sure that you check your Twitter feed frequently.
Many airlines also have newsletters. Sign up so you will know when their next seat sales will be.
You can also use different services like Google Flights or Skyscanner to create price alerts on flights you are considering. That way, you will know if the price dips.
Use a Flight Comparison Service
Flight comparison services such as Skyscanner, Google Flights, and Kiwi allow you to search for flights based on date and destination. They compare across multiple airlines, so you can find the best deal.
Unlike travel agents or other booking sites, they make their money from ad revenue. This means you don’t have to pay commissio and will get the lowest price possible.
Plus, these flight comparison services also have apps, so you can manage your travel searching right from your phone. They are a handy addition to any collection of essential travel apps.
Skyscanner is especially useful because of their “Anywhere” search feature. You can look up the dates, or even the month you want to travel, and find the best last minute flights to anywhere in the world.
As long are you are flexible, you could score an incredible last-minute deal.
Call The Airlines
If you are looking for a last minute flight because of a family emergency, you may be able to get a bereavement fare. The most sure way to get this discount is to speak to an airline representative directly.
Not all airlines still provide bereavement fares, but it doesn’t hurt to ask.
Consider Non-Traditional Options
Sometimes, if you are going to a more obscure location or want to travel in comfort, but on a budget, looking outside the traditional airlines can help save you money.
Some travelers use empty leg charter flights, which are deeply discounted seats sold off to fill the return journey of a one way privately chartered flight. This lets you travel in comfort at a fraction of the cost.
Or, you might consider making a stop-over into part of your vacation. Sometimes, you can find massive savings by doing your journey in two legs. This means you might have a day or two in between your flights to your final destination.
Plan for a stop-over in a city that sounds appealing. For example, if you are flying from New York to Seoul, you will likely have to stop-over in Amsterdam. Taking a day or two to enjoy the sights in Amsterdam before flying on could let you save money while enhancing your vacation.
By following these tips, you can get the best possible deals on last minute flights to anywhere you want to go. Some flexibility, lots of searching, and readiness to buy will make sure you can take advantage of the deals when you find them.
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