Flight Attendant Reveals Hidden Air Travel Hacks to Save Money

by Editor

A flight attendant has unveiled ten secrets that airlines would rather keep under wraps, providing valuable tips that can significantly benefit travellers.

Top travel tour operator Ski Vertigo interviewed a seasoned flight attendant who shared insider information about concealed airline deals. This knowledge can help you make smarter and more informed travel decisions.

  1. Book Flights Midweek
    Airlines often lower their prices midweek, usually on Tuesdays and Wednesdays. This is because airlines launch sales early in the week, and by midweek, other airlines have matched or undercut those prices. Additionally, fewer people book flights during these days, which can also drive prices down. By booking midweek, you can often find better deals compared to weekends when demand is higher.
  2. Hidden City Ticketing
    Hidden city ticketing involves booking a flight with a layover at your actual destination. For instance, if you want to go to Paris but a flight to Berlin with a layover in Paris is cheaper, you book the flight to Berlin and simply get off in Paris. This method can save you a significant amount of money. However, be aware that this comes with risks: your checked baggage will go to the final destination, and airlines frown upon this practice, which could potentially affect your frequent flyer status if caught.
  3. Use VPNs for Cheaper Fares
    Flight prices can vary based on your location. By using a VPN to change your IP address to another country, you can sometimes find cheaper fares. For example, if flights are cheaper when booked from India, using a VPN to make it appear you are booking from there can reduce your costs. Airlines price tickets differently in various markets based on demand, purchasing power, and competition, so experimenting with VPNs can uncover significant savings.
  4. Take Advantage of Error Fares
    Error fares occur when airlines mistakenly list flights at extremely low prices due to technical glitches or human error. Websites like Secret Flying and The Flight Deal track and publish these error fares. If you’re flexible with your travel dates and destinations, you can score some incredible deals. However, there’s always a risk that the airline might cancel the ticket if the error is caught, so wait a few days before making non-refundable travel arrangements.
  5. Frequent Flyer Miles and Points
    Joining frequent flyer programs and accumulating miles can lead to free or heavily discounted flights. Many credit cards offer travel rewards that can be converted into airline miles. Savvy travellers maximize these points by using their cards for everyday purchases and taking advantage of sign-up bonuses. Additionally, many frequent flyer programs offer additional perks such as priority boarding, free checked bags, and access to airport lounges, enhancing your travel experience.
  6. Look for Free Stopovers
    Some airlines offer free stopovers in their hub cities, allowing you to explore an additional city at no extra cost. For example, Icelandair offers stopovers in Reykjavik at no extra charge. This allows you to add an extra destination to your trip without paying for an additional flight, making your travel experience richer and more diverse. Airlines like Qatar Airways, Emirates, and Finnair have similar programs.
  7. Alternative Airlines for Long Hauls
    Consider flying with lesser-known airlines that operate long-haul flights at lower prices. New budget carriers regularly enter the market, offering competitive prices. These airlines often have newer fleets and competitive services but check for hidden fees like baggage or meal costs.
  8. Credit Card Travel Portals
    Some credit card companies have their own travel booking portals, which offer discounted rates or extra rewards points. For example, using the American Express Travel portal or Chase Ultimate Rewards can give you better prices or significant cash back and points for future travel. These portals often have exclusive deals and promotions, providing an added incentive to book through them.
  9. Error Fare Alerts
    Sign up for alerts from websites that track error fares. These fares are usually mistakes made by airlines in pricing and can offer massive discounts. Websites like Airfarewatchdog and Scott’s Cheap Flights are great for finding these rare but rewarding deals. Being quick to act on these alerts is essential, as error fares are corrected rapidly once discovered.
  10. Check Nearby Airports
    When searching for flights, consider alternative airports near your departure and destination cities. For example, if you’re flying from London, check flights from Gatwick, Stansted, and Luton in addition to Heathrow. Sometimes, flying from or to a different airport can result in significant savings. This strategy works well in regions with multiple airports within a reasonable distance, providing more options and potentially lower fares.
woman at airport

Another flight attendant who spoke to Ski Vertigo commented on the findings:

“When it comes to saving money on flights, timing is everything. One practical tip is to set up fare alerts on multiple travel websites and apps. These alerts notify you when prices drop for your desired routes, allowing you to snag the best deals before they disappear.

Skyscanner, Kayak, and Google Flights are excellent tools for this purpose. Another effective strategy is to book tickets well in advance for peak travel periods like summer holidays and Christmas, as prices tend to rise closer to the departure date.

Consider taking advantage of airline loyalty programs that offer status matches. If you have elite status with one airline, you can often match it with another airline’s program, gaining access to perks like free upgrades, extra baggage allowances, and priority boarding without starting from scratch.

On top of that, using cashback websites or apps when booking flights can help you earn a percentage of your spending back, adding up to significant savings over time.”

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