Ready to click “reserve” on that flight to Honolulu? Well, before you do, you might want to rethink your purchasing strategy. Konrad Waliszewski, CEO of TripScout—a trip planning app that helps travelers organize their trip based on dates, budgets and interests—says that contrary to popular travel myths—like booking a flight on Tuesday at 11 p.m.— it’s been statistically proven that there’s not one ideal time to save big on flights. In fact, Thrifty Travel reports that airlines are constantly altering their prices in order to compete with each other, so your chances of getting a grand deal on your girls’ trip to Tulum are the same whether you search for flights on a Tuesday at 11 p.m. or Friday at noon.
But there is one nifty trick you can use to travel the world without doling out major dough: Work backwards.
Here's how the method works: Waliszewski suggests that instead of looking for flights based on destination try basing it off your current location. “Start by looking at Google Flights, Skyscanner or Kayak, figure out the cheapest places to visit based on your city, then see what dates are available,” he explains.
That means if you live in New York, for example, and you want to soak in some sun rays in Hawaii during one of the colder months, your best bet is to look for flights coming out of your city and going to any sun-soaked tropical destination, staying flexible on the dates. The downside of this method? You might not make it to the exact location on your bucket list. The pros? You’ll save money and get to go places you may not have thought of otherwise. “I’ve done this method and have gotten a trip from Chicago to Copenhagen for $150,” Waliszewski revealed. “Travelers can [easily] save 80 percent or more that way.”
Another helpful tidbit: Alternative route hacking, which is especially helpful when you’re traveling internationally. “If you want to go from one country to another, don’t just look at what your flight is straight to that destination—which is what most people do,” he states. “If you want to go from New York City to Prague, for example, that’s probably not the cheapest flight. However, you can use Google Flights or Skyscanner and find all the flights that go from NYC, over the ocean and which are the cheapest. Then see what the cheapest flights are, going into Prague from that side of the ocean and find out if you get any overlap.”
Keep in mind that you may have to switch airlines, which in turn means it’s up to you to make sure you have adequate time to make the connecting flight. Other than that, you could save approximately 50 percent on your entire trip. Wheels up!