It seems too good to be true, right? I’m heading out to Vegas and have been keeping an eye on the airline prices for a couple of weeks now waiting for the right moment so imagine my surprise when I read that a flight out cost me exactly $36.31 to fly out. I’d actually seen a flight for $29 for the same day but I’m very hesitant when it comes to airlines that tend to have a bad reputation…
So how did I do it? Here are a few of the things I did to make sure I was getting the best rate possible:
1. Check Google Flights
I’m more of a Kayak and Skiplagged kind of gal but Google Flights has recently shown amazing prices even superior to the fare checking websites I’m used to. My favorite thing about Google Flights is price transparency. You can select a few dates and Google Flights will run a search on all of the “popular” destinations with best deals, or you can select a location and have an idea of what the cost would be for flights on certain dates well into a month or two (and more).
2. Be Flexible
It’s well-known that weekend dates tend to run more expensive than others for the fact that well, it’s the weekend. If you’re able to flex your dates around to arriving a day sooner (like I did), you’ll be saving more money. Google Flights actually gives you a bit of an idea of how much you’d save by altering your departure and/or arrival dates.
3. Don’t Give Up!
The first time I looked for flights to Vegas was probably two and a half weeks out from my arrival date. I saw that JetBlue was offering deals for the day but found out my flight would run me a whopping $538 ONE WAY. A few days before finding this flight from American Airlines, I saw that flights were now ranging from $112-278 and I was mentally preparing myself to spend that much to go to Vegas.
4. Ungodly Hours Need Apply
The most affordable flights I’ve ever found are either red-eye flights or insanely early “before the rooster sings” kind of flights. Let’s make one thing clear: people will always choose comfort over affordability unless absolutely desperate, and even then that’s a bit questionable. I’m typically a night owl and almost always on auto-pilot so it makes no difference to me if I fly out at night to get there in the morning or a little past midnight to get there before the sun is up.
5. Airlines Can Make Mistakes Too
The most common one I know of is that airlines will drop their prices closer to the date if the flight doesn’t fill up (they need to fill their quota), but the other less common bit of knowledge is that airlines can and will make mistakes on their prices from time to time. I’m choosing to believe that AA messed up with this price because the most affordable price I’ve seen from Phoenix to Vegas has been at least $56 without taxes–most commonly $78 in all of the times I’ve searched for it. Sometimes, you need to keep an eye out for exactly this kind of blunder so that you can book your flight.