How to Get a Good Price for Airline Tickets

Good prices on airfares are not that difficult to find.
Good prices on airfares are not that difficult to find. (Image: Thomas Northcut/Photodisc/Getty Images)

Finding reasonable prices on airline tickets is not as difficult as many travelers believe. Airlines change the prices of tickets on a regular basis, sometimes multiple times a day. The key to finding a good price is to begin looking for tickets early, comparison shop and be flexible with your travel plans. Travel websites provide a good start to searching for tickets because these sites allow users to check the price of tickets on multiple airlines with just one search.

Comparison shop for your ticket prices. Travel sites such as Expedia and Travelocity allow you to enter your flight information and view the prices and times of flights on multiple airlines with just one search.

Shop early; don’t procrastinate. Waiting too long to buy your tickets often means missing out on the lowest fares. Airline prices are typically at their lowest three to four months prior to your travel date, but they do fluctuate regularly. As departure dates get closer, supply and demand causes ticket prices to rise considerably, although in some cases good last-minute deals can be found as airlines scramble to fill empty seats.

Be flexible. If you don’t have to be somewhere on a certain day, change the date of your departure by one or two days to see if the price drops. Often you’ll find that flying on a Monday is considerably less expensive than departing on Saturday or Sunday. According to Rick Seaney, CEO of, Wednesday is the least expensive day to fly.

Compare airport prices. You know you can compare fares on different airlines but you also have the ability to compare fares flying to/from different airports. For example, if you are flying into New York City, try looking for tickets into JFK, Newark and La Guardia and choose the one with the lowest price.

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