Frugal travel tips for airline tickets

An essential part of the travel budget is transportation and this often includes airline tickets. The frugal traveler does more than keep an eye on the Internet for low cost flights. He or she is looking for more creative ways to increase travel money.

Use free stopovers

When the husband and I first traveled to Australia, we flew with Air New Zealand. Why? Because the airline offered a free stopover at its hub in New Zealand. We had never seen the country and planned to visit it anyway. That way, we didn’t have to pay for round-trip plane tickets.

The second time we traveled to Australia we flew with Air Tahiti Nui. This airline offered, you guessed it, a free stopover in Tahiti on the outward journey as well as on the return. Another place we have always wanted to visit.

Hidden cities

Free stopovers are a benefit openly offered by some airlines. Hidden cities are not only unannounced, but are actively discouraged by airlines. However, they can be great savings for the frugal traveler.

An example of this is a trip from New York to Las Vegas. Sometimes a flight from New York to Los Angeles is cheaper, even if that same flight stops in Las Vegas to take more passengers. So what’s stopping the frugal traveler from getting off early, to the destination they really want to visit?

A few things … The luggage will be sent to the ticket destination, so this tip is only for hand passengers. The traveler should also remember that the return ticket must start at their actual destination.

Get banged

For the flexible and easy-going traveler, being rushed for a flight is like winning the travel lottery. Usually there is compensation and you allow someone else, who really needs it, to get to your destination on time.

Travelers knowing the rules know the compensation offered (check the carriers’ website), know about upcoming flights (beware of carriers with weekly flights), and can weigh that against the pain of interrupted plans. The husband and I always decide before arriving at the airport (early so we have a boarding pass to give up) whether it is worth it or not. This way we can be the first to offer our seats.

There are ways to increase the chances of being ejected, the easiest being to book a flight that is already quite full (usually a flight later in the day).

Air travel doesn’t have to blow up a travel budget. With some monitoring of discount sites and a little creativity, the frugal traveler can receive more for less.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *