Finding Cheap Airfare: A How-To

Written By Carmen from 


Spending less on a plane ticket means extra cash for your urban backpacking adventure. The first step: knowing when and where to look for the best airfare deals.

To start, check out Hopper,  a site designed to help you find the most convenient flight for the least amount of money. The site is especially good if you plan to backpack Europe, backpack Asia, or backpack Australia.

 The best time to purchase tickets

Pro Tip: A reduced fare is usually posted after midnight.

In general you want to purchase tickets:

  • 6 weeks before you fly for U.S. domestic flight
  • 21 to 22 weeks in advance for international flight

Best day and time to fly out

Tuesday and Wednesday are the cheapest days to fly out. Very early or late flights are also typically cheaper than flying during normal hours.

Connecting flight

Adding a stop or two can help urban backpackers save as much as 50 percent on their airfare.

Choice of airport

Airport at different town in the city can have an effect on airfare prices. It might be a better choice to take that extra hour to a more distant airport. When I traveled from Stockholm to Gdnask, I flew from NYO (Stockholm Shavsta Airport) for $25 USD, one-way ticket and non-stop flight with Wizz Air, instead of from ARN (Stockholm Arlanda Airport), which saved me at least $75 USD.

Sign Up For Free Alerts On Mobile Apps

After you choose the destinations and dates to travel, SkyScanner is a great app to have in your mobile device. You can check the prices of the month you wish to travel in to see what days are the cheapest, and set an alarm to receive notifications when the price increases or decreases. For those of us who are always on the go, it’s the best way to stay in the know.

You Might Also Consider: or, both of which attempt to predict future prices.

Pro Tip: Once you have found the ideal airfare, be sure to visit the actual airline site. They might be selling the same ticket you found on SkyScanner or Kayak for a cheaper price. Also, be sure to take baggage fees and other extra charges into account.

Enjoy your travels!