Air travel is more important than ever – but sometimes it can seem more expensive than ever too.While some fares have come down, other fares are definitely at the high end of the spectrum. So, when you are looking for a round trip ticket, it can be confusing to know how and where you can get the best round trip tickets.We’ve spoken with travel experts and they shared their tips with us on how to buy the cheapest round trip tickets. So below you’ll find easy ways to score round trip tickets for the lowest prices.
Book as Far Out as Possible
As a general rule, the further out you book, the cheaper your round trip ticket will be.It is true that airlines sometimes release cheap fares at the last minute. But in practice it is more rare than some people may have you believe.In fact, airlines basically release a variety of different fare “buckets” months ahead of the flight. As the cheaper ones sell out, only the costlier options remain available. So, if you can book almost a year in advance, you’ll have your pick of the cheapest seats.
Travel Off Peak
It almost goes without saying – you will find that tickets are cheaper if you can travel when most other people are not travelling.That can mean avoiding high seasons and public holidays. But it can also mean booking tickets for days which tend to be quieter for airline travel, such as midweek departures.
Limit Your Stay
For most tickets, shorter stays will cost less than longer ones.Airlines make you pay a lot for very short stays or same day turns, but if you stay a few days, you are usually in the pricing sweet spot. Once you stay more than three months or six months, you often exceed the maximum stay limit of the cheaper fare buckets and so will no longer be eligible for the cheapest round fare tickets.
Indirect is Cheaper
Direct flights are the most convenient – which is why they are often also the most expensive.Between two points, there are usually a bunch of airlines who offer service. But one or two will be direct, whereas others may be indirect. These flights are longer and involve shuffling between planes, so to make them more attractive, airlines will often discount tickets. Some international carriers are famous for this model, like Emirates, Turkish Airways and Qatar Air. Others you might not even think of also usually offer deep discounts on indirect international flights, such as Air China and Aeroflot.
Explore All Itineraries
A lot of people miss the cheapest round trip tickets because their search is too narrow.For example, a cheaper round trip can often be found if you mix carriers on the outbound and inbound legs. Sometimes it can also be cheaper if the flight mixes a variety of ticket classes.Knowing this is one thing, but doing it yourself is another. Often you’ll struggle to bring up these sorts of complex itineraries even if you a proficient user of online travel search tools. Instead, you should speak to a specialist travel agent who can more easily examine the wide variety of possible itineraries.
Ask about Discounts
What’s even better than a cheap ticket is a cheap ticket with an extra discount on top!Airlines offer discounts for different groups of passengers. For example, you may qualify for a discount if you are a student, if you are below a certain age, if you are at retirement age or a host of other criteria. Sometimes these discounts are available on demand, while for others you may first need to join an organisation such as the American Association for Retired People.This is an easy way to score what can sometimes be a substantial saving.
Keep An Eye Open for Deals
The general rule we outlined above is that the cheapest fares are offered long before the travel dates.It is also true, however, that airlines sometimes offer special deals or promotional prices which can represent a great saving on the normal cost. It’s worth keeping an eye out for those, although taking advantage of them can sometimes require a lot of flexibility in your travel dates and strength of stay.If you see a deal like that advertised, but the carrier or dates don’t suit you, you can always contact your preferred carrier with the details of the promotion and ask them whether they would be willing to match it.Air travel needn’t be expensive. If you use an informed approach, you can buy round trip tickets for much cheaper than you may think. We’ve shared above the inside secrets on buying cheap round trip tickets. Why not sit down today and decide what destination you want to test those tips against?