Falling ticket prices were the norm when the economy was bad. However, as the economy begins to gain strength, domestic airfare prices are beginning to rise again.
Finding those airfare deals can be difficult but by following these tips, you can keep your costs down and find some substantial savings when you fly domestic.
1. It’s About Timing
When saving money on domestic flights, timing is very important. On less competitive domestic routes, you should be buying your tickets at least 21 days in advance.
This will assure you of getting the best price. When buying tickets for common domestic routes take advantage of the internet web resources. A few airfare predictor sites will advise you on the best time to buy or wait on that domestic airfare purchase.
2. Shopping Around
Saving money can usually mean you need to do a little shopping around to find the best price on your domestic flight. Many times the lowest fare rates are on the airline’s own website; other times domestic airline ticket consolidators have the better price.
Look for a website that will search for a low price on several domestic airline carriers such as Kayak or Expedia.
Take the time to sign up with several domestic airlines that travel the routes you like to fly. Getting their e-mail deals on special domestic flights is worth the time and effort. Also, consider signing up with websites that specialize in tracking domestic airfare prices such as airfarewatchdog.com who track down airfare deals.
4. Pick Your Days Carefully
Domestic flights are usually cheaper if you depart on Tuesday, Wednesday, or Saturday. If you are planning on a round-trip domestic ticket purchase, you will usually pay a premium when that stay does not include a Saturday.
5. One-Way Tickets
Many domestic airline carriers do not require a round-trip ticket purchase to get the lowest price on a domestic flight. In addition, if your travel plans do not include a Saturday, you may want to consider purchasing two one-way tickets instead of round trip. Check with the domestic carrier and verify their pricing policy both one-way and round-trip.
6. Alternate Airports
This is where the air-traveler will need to be flexible to save money on their domestic flight. Many of the discounted domestic airlines may not have routes to the major airports. Look for smaller airports in the same area to save money.
A cheap car rental may be worth the time to fly into that smaller airport.
7. Be a Price Watchdog
Even after all this, you could be stuck paying too much for your domestic flight tickets. Check with your airlines to see if they offer any price protection. Some will offer you a credit if the price drops.
Others domestic airlines will pay you the difference if the airfare price decreases. The website yapta.com is a great site that keeps track of airline prices and their domestic ticketing policies.