Many people are still sticking to a tight budget following the most recent recession, so for those who travel, finding the best airline ticket prices for business travel becomes even more important. With a little bit of know-how and creativity, you can find exceptional deals.
Just like consumers, airline companies were hit hard by the recession. For that reason, the industry has changed. Being under tremendous pressure to make a profit, many airlines are much tougher on price reductions. In addition, since some airlines went out of business or dramatically cut flight routes, there is limited competition and fuller planes. As a result, airlines have even less incentive to reduce ticket prices.
Flexible Travel Dates
Whenever possible, be as flexible with your travel dates as possible. The price of airline tickets will vary depending on the day of the week, time of the year, and any upcoming holidays. As an example, throughout Europe, August is an extremely busy time for airline travel, so the price of tickets is going to be much higher during that month than other times of the year. Other tips for spending less include:
- Fly during the middle of the week as opposed to on a weekend.
- Avoid flying on an actual holiday; instead, go a few days prior or a few days after.
- Choose an early-morning or evening flight.
Just as it is important to be flexible with travel dates, you want to have some flexibility regarding destination. While you may have your heart set on going to one particular place, based on price perhaps you could find a comparable destination that better fits the budget. You can check directly with the airline or use any number of exceptional applications. Some of the best apps include:
- Google Flights
- Kayak Explore
Most of the larger cities within the United States have secondary airports. These airports are smaller and used primarily by budget airline carriers. In many instances, the amount saved by flying into a secondary airport is substantial. With this option, you can fly into a different airport and then hire a car to take you to your final destination. Consider the following examples:
- Instead of taking a major airline to Los Angeles, you could book a flight on JetBlue to Long Beach, which is very close.
- Skip flying into major cities in Sweden, choosing a flight on Norwegian Airlines to Stockholm or Oslo.
- Rather than flying into Amsterdam in the Netherlands, you could fly on Ryanair into Eindhoven.
Taking Alternative Routes
Another excellent way to find the best airline ticket prices is by looking at alternative routes. Obviously, for the sake of time and convenience, flying direct is always best, but if the goal is to save money, then you can look at trips with unique routing. For example, instead of flying straight into Amsterdam, consider a flight to London and then connect with a budget airline to Amsterdam.
The same is true if the final destination were Paris. For a trip like this, you can easily save more than $200 by flying into Dublin and then taking a budget airline carrier to Paris as opposed to catching a direct Paris flight. When taking an alternative route, there is more flight time involved, but often the savings is substantial.
Good Online Searches
You can also use the power of Internet, but the results you get will depend largely on which sites you use. Most people conduct searches for flights and prices using Orbitz and Expedia, but because these sites work with or are actually owned by airline companies, the fares are not always unbiased.
Therefore, prior to locking into any rate, it would be beneficial to spend a little time looking at different travel websites. Keep in mind that the smaller budget carriers will not be listed on the main travel sites. These airlines are a bit more obscure and, therefore, somewhat more challenging to find. However, by choosing international sites like Momondo or Skyscanner, you will see both major and secondary carrier information.Tags: Business travel, travel tips