Your Guide to Finding Cheap Flights Like a Pro

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With the holiday season coming up, it’s only fitting to address all of you planning (or dreaming) to travel in the next month or two. For the prepared ones of the group, you’ve probably already done the grunt work and purchased your plane tickets (if you’re flying that is). I’m proud of you, but not everyone is as fortunate as you to be a planner and I bet some of you are frantically searching everywhere for a flight that doesn’t break the bank right now. Even if the trip isn’t during the holiday season, here are some tips for finding the cheapest flights possible from someone who’s already tried out Skyscanner, Expedia, and Kayak. Trust me, they don’t work like these tips do.

  1. 1. Hopper

    This is my absolute savior when it comes to planning trips or flights. Here’s why: the app Hopper allows you to freeze prices, wait for better prices, and alerts you on the best times to buy tickets. You can search for your desired dates and if you find a ridiculous one (which you probably will), Hopper lets you freeze it for a low amount to get your act together before you buy it. All that PLUS it always looks and shows you the lowest prices possible, so you honestly can’t go wrong with this app. Best part? It’s free to download and there are no fees involved with booking. An actual dream.

  2. 2. Skiplagged

    Now if you’re looking for some ridiculous prices that you didn’t even think were possible, go download the Skiplagged app. Skiplagged works best when you don’t really have specific dates you’re planning a trip for because they find you the best rates at the best times. For example, if you’re looking to go to California in the summer but don’t know when Skiplagged will tell you that it’s best to go during June instead of August. You get the gist. Some of the lowest rates I’ve ever seen are on Skiplagged so I’m telling you, you need this app. 

  3. 3. United Airlines Student Discounts

    This tip is a little more of an investment but I promise come five years from now, you’ll be thanking me. It kind of is a little pricer booking on something that isn’t Hopper or Skiplagged but the plus side of booking with United Airlines directly is their rewards program and their crazy deals they offer every now and then. Right now, if you book a flight directly with United (when you’re signed up for their rewards program as a student) you can get 10% off up until December 31, 2019. First, this is a pretty great deal and second, the points you get adds up people! You’ll remember that in a few years when your girls' trip to Europe is dirt cheap because of your points with United.

  4. 4. Airlines' Websites

    Ah, now onto my personal favorite. Booking flights directly on airlines’ websites. Before you go crazy, this doesn’t work all the time but when it does it really freaking pays off. For example, I found a flight on Norweigan Airlines to Madrid, Spain for $280. Roundtrip. No, this is not a drill, these flights do exist. Mind you, a roundtrip flight to Madrid is normally like $500 so this was quite a reduction. Going directly on airlines’ websites (especially when you are planning a few months ahead) can literally save you hundreds of dollars and make your dream trips possible. When you sign up for their programs or rewards deals, it makes it even cheaper. I’m telling you, this is the way to go if you have a little time before your trip.

Hopefully, these tips can actually help you make your traveling dreams come true (they’ve definitely made mine happen). Especially as a student, traveling can be a little daunting when it’s this expensive so having these tips on hand when you have to or just want to travel can make your life a little bit easier. So rest easy knowing you’re going to save hundreds because you definitely won’t be resting on your flight to your dream destination.