Sunday, May 24, 2015

How To Find The Cheapest Flights To Europe

 (Florence, Italy)

Need help finding some cheap flights to Europe this summer? I'm excited to share my advice to help you find a cheap ticket! Since I graduated high school, I've been lucky enough to take a trip to Europe annually. Travel has become my biggest passion. I've learned a lot through my travels, but one of the most important things I've learned is how to find a cheap flight. Saving money is essential for me (#shoppingproblem) and I want to share some of my tips with you all! 


1. Google Flight Search

(screenshot from my desktop)

   If you travel a lot or need some guidance with purchasing a cheap plane ticket, you need to be on Google Flight Search. It's been so helpful with finding the cheapest flights! Before I started using it, I would have tabs on tabs on tabs open on my desktop. It was so unorganized and so difficult to keep track of every possible flight that I found. With Google flight search, I have everything I need to know all in one place.
   What I love about it is that I can scan through alternative dates and alternative airlines/airports to find the cheapest flights in the most efficient way. I'm all about having plenty of options! Instead of refreshing or editing my search each time like on other sites, the prices are listed in calendar format for easy comparison. I just bought my return ticket from Sweden to LAX which was planned for September 8th but instead I purchased the ticket for September 10th. Thanks to Google, I saved $300 by leaving two days later...and I extended my stay :) If you're really flexible with your dates or where you want to go, you can use the "I'm Feeling Lucky" option and it will direct you to popular destinations for cheap prices. Awesome!
   It's completely interactive and so easy to navigate. Play around with it and it will most likely end up being your go-to site for purchasing tickets.
   To completely fulfill your trip, try Google Hotel Finder too!



  Both of these sites have been super helpful for me when I need price checks and deals for traveling. Hopper is an app that is all about airfare predictions. It provides data-driven research to help you make smarter and cheaper decisions on when and where to go. They let you know when the cheapest time is to fly to your desired destination and they even let you know about deals to help save. I love that it's derived from data so you know it can be trusted!
   Skyscanner has helped me relax when flight prices are fluctuating like crazy. Too many times have I been looking at a flight one day and the next day the price jumps hundreds of dollars. NOT COOL. I signed up with Skyscanner to get email alerts about flights I'm interested in and it will let me know if the prices have increased or decreased. I love getting those decreased emails! I highly recommend signing up if you've been stalking a certain flight!


3. Fly into nearby airports or other countries

top of the rock-rockefeller center-new york city-cheap flights
(Top of the Rock, NYC)

   The good thing about Europe is that everything is relatively close. Which means that cheap flights within Europe are plentiful; I just bought a flight from Dublin to London for $35. Yes, you read that right. With budget airlines such as Norwegian Air Shuttle and Ryanair, this is not a rare price to stumble across. Even though my main destination has been Sweden for the past 6 years, I don't always fly into an airport in Sweden. I'll always search surrounding airports in Norway and Finland to try and find cheaper options. Sometimes, it's even cheaper to fly into London then book a separate flight from London to Sweden. If you're down to make a couple extra stops to save some cash, your journey could be a bit longer but it's definitely worth it. I do this when I travel within the US too; for example, I fly into New Jersey sometimes instead of flying into New York!


4. Sign up for newsletters

   I've signed up for so many website's newsletters like CheapOAir, Kayak, Expedia, and much more. Sometime's it seems like way too many emails but it's so helpful when you need to save! They always offer discounts or coupon codes for your upcoming purchases. Even if it's as little as 10%, it still saves you some money! Any money I can hold on to for one extra ice cream cone in my destination is so worth it...


5. Wait for the off season!


Garmisch, Garmisch Partenkirchen, Germany, Travel Blog, Fashion Blog, Caseys Collection, Cheap flights to europe

Garmisch, Garmisch Partenkirchen, Germany, Travel blog, fashion blog, caseys collection, eurotrip, cheap flights,
(Garmisch Partenkirchen, Germany)

 
   You probably hear this all the time, but don't travel during the tourist seasons. And by that I mean July, August, and December. Everyone is leaving for their summer breaks during these times so prices are way too high. Other expensive times to travel are during special events in your destination. For example, some weeks in September get expensive in Milan, Stockholm, London and Paris because of fashion week. Hotel prices are sky-freakin-high! So make sure you're being thorough in your search. In my opinion, it's so much better to travel somewhere and be able to roam around without the crowds. Hands down, my favorite time to travel anywhere is in Spring. It's the easiest to pack for and it's usually such a beautiful time of year to see!

6. Get the package deal
   
italy, eurotrip, bologna, sunflowers, cheap flights, travel blog
  (Bologna, Italy)

 There are plenty of sites you can sign up for that send you vacation package deals. Jetsetter, Groupon, and Sherman's Travel are just a few of my favorite sites that I've become a member of. I get emails all the time (in the least annoying way possible) with deals about trips all over the world. So if you're looking to save on the whole package, make sure you're a member of one of these sites!

7. Sign up for frequent flyer programs!

   If you've found a few airlines you absolutely love flying with, sign up for their frequent flyer program...obviously! If you fly with an airline on a consistent basis you need to be smart about it; those miles will add up! I'm a member with Virgin Airlines, Norwegian Air Shuttle, and Scandinavian Airlines. 
Also, be a savvy traveler and sign up for credit cards that are travel friendly.
   Some popular credit cards that all major travelers use are Chase Sapphire, Capitol One, and Starwood Preferred with American Express. Right now, Hawaiian Airlines is giving away 35,000 points towards a flight if you sign up for their Master Card. I could use a trip to Hawaii any time of the year so I am definitely going to apply. Honestly, there are always perks and rewards to get. Finding the best card for you is a whole different story...


So there you have it! Do any of you have any advice for travelers looking to save? Please let me know in the comments so we can help each other out! xo

:)



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