So the first way to save big bucks on your holiday is on the flights. Many people believe they can’t afford to travel, but if you’re not too picky (and even if you are!) you can travel on the tiniest budget. By that, I mean I’ve seen flights going for £5 one way – that’s as much as a coffee.
My number 1 tip – use Skyscanner. I can’t begin to tell you how much I love this website. The top 2 features:
*you can search without having a destination
*you can see flights costs for a whole month
Searching without a destination is invaluable, and something I haven’t found elsewhere. Say you have a week off, but you’re not sure where to go – use this to see where you can go in your budget. This is how we ended up in Norway – it was the cheapest place we could fly to that weekend. It’s a great tool if you’re looking for somewhere a bit different. You’ll be surprised how cheap you can fly from your local airport. In addition to this, you could also search for a town rather than specific airport, eg ‘All London’ – you might find flying to Luton cheaper than your go-to Heathrow.
Seeing prices for a whole month is great for a few reasons. If you’re flexible with your dates, you might be able to make substantial savings by picking the right day (Wednesdays are normally the cheapest). If you have a definite outbound date, the view month feature will show you the return prices for specific days – you could save a lot of money coming back the night before (and not lose much time). Maybe you just want to estimate average flight prices for a destination when costing a trip – either way, this tool is amazing.
There’s so many other thing this site is great for, but one in particular is price alerts – if you’re looking for a specific date you can sign up and they’ll let you know when you’re flight is at it’s cheapest (so far).
TIP: when I go to actually book my flights, I’ll always use a different computer. Sometimes, if you search the same flight multiple times, some sites store your cookies and will bump the price up. To make sure I’m getting the final best price, I tend to use my work computer to book.
I always just want to write a note here about Ryanair. Ryanair is definitely the cheapest airline you can use to fly in Europe. I will admit, a few years back they were not a great airline and we did have a couple of issues. However, in recent years I have used them many times and actually find their service to be excellent. On most occasions they are on time, if not early – even when leaving late they tend to make the time up. Staff are generally good, and since they’ve implemented allocated seating checking in is a breeze. They do of course charge for any extras, including checked baggage, but we never pay any of these – even for a week long holiday we had enough space in cabin baggage each. Their mobile app is also great – I’ve checked in with that for every flight. In addition, they have a great safety record. Basically, what I’m trying to say is that Ryanair are a great choice for any short haul flight – especially at their unbeatable prices.
I’ve signed up to their mailing list so I can keep up with their sales. Don’t be fooled though – for Ryanair, an actual bargain is their £9.99 flight sales. They come around often enough, interspersed with the £14.99 and £20 sales, so hold out if you can!
What are you waiting for? Go check out those flight prices!!!
[Long haul info coming…]