Booking a flight can sometimes be more stressful than the trip itself…between falling for an airlines’ low rate, then realizing it doesn’t apply to your own travel dates is frustrating. We’ve got a few suggestions on how to make heading home for the holidays, out-of-town on business or on vacation, less worrisome, and hopefully, less expensive.
Money Saving Travel Apps and Websites
Going direct to an airline’s site isn’t always the way to get the best deal. There are a number of apps out there to help you find the lowest price available. Here are a few :
Hopper: Here’s an app that gives you a calendar view of the best times to fly so that you get the best deals. Pick a date and subscribe for updates when flight prices fluctuate. This has been handy for me recently, so much so that it’s my go-to app for planning and purchasing at the lowest price possible.
Kayak: Kayak helps you find the best deal on flights, hotels, car rentals, and more by scouring top travel websites for the lowest price possible. They were one of the first sites to let you search by a date range of +/- days from your original flight date, which can get you much better deals in some cases. Keep an eye out for Kayak’s “Hacker Fares,” that pair one-way flights on different airlines to help you get the lowest prices possible. People have been doing this manually for a long time…now, there’s a company out there making it easier for you to find deals like this. Now that you’ve got your ticket, what will you do with your time between departure and arrival?
Make Flying More Fun
If sitting in a small seat for hours on end isn’t necessarily your idea of a good time, here are a few ideas that will help you pass in-flight hours.
Podcasts: There are many podcasts out there that will fit your tastes and needs, but I’ll share a few of my favorites: The Nerdist Podcast gives me my pop culture/comedy fill. NPR’s Fresh Air is also available in podcast form, which means I get to listen to the amazing Terry Gross interview some of the greatest authors, actors, scientists, politicians and business leaders. Speaking of business, if you’re about to launch your own, or into the stories of how a business lives and dies, the Startup Podcast is a can’t miss.
Books: Can’t find time to read? When you’re on a flight, you basically have no excuse for not catching up on your reading list. Download the Amazon Kindle app, or use iBooks (if you’re using an iPhone) and get cracking on that list!
- If you get to choose seats on your flight, and you want more legroom, try to choose a seat on the emergency exit row. This row is usually more wide set and allows you to stretch your legs. Note there’s a chance these seats won’t recline, and may be slightly more narrow than other seats on the plane, because the tray tables sometimes have to be placed in the armrest.
- Bring a portable battery for your phone, especially since that’s probably going to be what you spend most of your flight staring at. If you’re watching a movie, playing games, or listening to podcasts, you’ll need it.
- Since you’re going to need the on-flight wifi, and it costs money, look around online for a discount code. They’re usually pretty easy to find, and well worth it.
- Don’t forget your headphones. If all you’ve got are the earbuds that came with your phone, consider upgrading to something with better sound quality. I recommend the Sennheiser HD380 Pro.
- Now you’re prepared with tips, tricks, and money saving-solutions that will make your next flight a little softer on your wallet. What are your tried and true tips for flying? Share them with us here.
Bruce is the founder of Chubstr.com, a style blog that helps guys to find, create, and share their own personal style with the world by offering them articles, resources, and reader photo submissions.
Bruce has been featured in the New York Times, Refinery 29, The Huffington Post, The Cut, The Sydney Morning Herald, MSN, and Le Monde for the unique and interesting content he’s created through Chubstr.