Airfares have skyrocketed since travel resumed in 2022 as Australians headed off to explore the country and the world once again, but were faced with limited capacity and rising fuel prices. Airline tickets only escalate over the summer season. Here are some tips for taking to the skies without breaking the bank.
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1. Don’t search by destination
Flip the way you search for flights. Use the Google Explore map, enter dates, your departure airport and leave the destination open (or pick a region, such as Asia). You’ll get an instant picture of which places are cheaper to reach.
2. Use a good flight search site
3. Avoid weekends and peak season
“Weekend flights are typically the most expensive and highest in demand,” says Finder travel expert Stephanie Yip. “Flying out on a weekday can really help keep costs down. And avoid school holidays and peak seasons.”
4. Book two one-way tickets
Jarrod Kris, Skyscanner’s Aussie travel expert, recommends mixing things up. “Flights don’t have to be booked as returns – booking separate one-way fares can end up saving you money.”
5. Be flexible with travel dates
Sometimes airline prices can drop drastically between days.
6. Set an airfare alert
Sites like Google Flights allow you to do this, and then notify you when there is a drop in price.
7. Consider some land travel
When time is on your side, consider land transfers. Instead of flying into London, fly to Paris instead (if it makes financial sense). It doesn’t take long (or cost much) to get between the two cities on a super-fast train.
8. Plan a stopover
Flying direct can have a huge impact on how much you pay for your flight, especially if you’re crossing an ocean.
9. Take a domestic flight first
Use a positioning fare to get you to your destination if you’re flying internationally. These are short domestic flights from your base to a second domestic destination to get a cheaper fare for the longer leg.
10. Bypass the bigger airports
Think about flying into secondary airports in major cities, if that’s an option. There’s often a price difference between fares.
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