So here you are at your desk…..ready to run for the hills…or the palm trees. Whatever. You’re searching for a flight and the prices turn you off from booking because you associate traveling with draining your bank account.

Flying from point A to point B is the part of travel that puts a damper on your pockets. It doesn’t ALWAYS have to. I look at booking a flight as a challenge. I try to use these little secrets that I’ve learned along the way and the majority of the time they work!

1. BOOK ON A TUESDAY– This is the day airlines release the most sales. If you want to get it down to the exact hour then 3pm eastern standard time. I would say 9 out of 10 of my flights I book on a Tuesday.

2. FLY ON THE CHEAPER DAYS- Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Saturdays are your best bet. The majority of people are searching for Fridays and Sundays making it more high in demand.

3. MIX AND MATCH- This can work with both airports and airlines. Can’t find a roundtrip flight in your price range? Try to book one way flights with different airlines. Maybe you can find a cheap one way with United Airlines and a fly home with Air Canada. Just play around a bit and see what you can save by doing this. You can also book a connecting flight…I always do this. I look for the cheapest hubs to fly into and then I book a cheaper low budget connector flight to my final destination. I flew from New York to Denmark for $250 just because it happens to be one of the cheaper hubs over here. Then I got on a cheaper hopper flight.

4. FLY EARLY- I’m always that jerk setting my alarm for 2:00am to get to the airport for 4:00am. Yes I’m up with the roosters but I saved a lot of money doing so.

5. SIGN UP FOR ALERTS- I current use airfare watchdog. The site sends you updates when prices drop for the destination that you have chosen. It serves as a great reminder tool as well when you know you have to get the flight sorted.

6. BE FLEXIBLE- If you are flexible by a few days, a week, or even a month, this could be the difference of a couple extra hundred bucks in your pocket.

7. LOW BUDGET AIRLINES- Don’t be a hater. Use them. You may not get the best service or the finest champagne but you can get from one country to another for dirt cheap. Most of my flights in europe when flying companies such as Ryan Air have cost me less than my bus tickets.

8. GET A CARD WITH POINTS- I currently use the Chase Sapphire Card and I get 3x the points when I book flights. If you travel all the time for work or pleasure then the points rack up fairly quickly. If you’re spending the money anyway you might as well get rewarded for it down the road with free flights.

9. TIMING- If you book too early or too late then you’re screwed. Unless you’re flying on Christmas or another big holiday then there’s no need to book 6 months in advance. There’s no sales that early and the airline computers aren’t programmed yet for deals. I find 3 months in advance for international works for me and about 2 months for domestic. Unless it’s an emergency try never to book the week of. Especially the day before. Now I’m not saying that airlines don’t do last minute deals but just overall try to stay within 3 months prior.

10. SEARCH ENGINES- Try them all. I swear by Skyscanner. Expedia, priceline, booking, etc. they all serve the same purpose but again I always find the cheapest with Skyscanner.

11. 24 HOUR RULE- This is a sneaky little game. Sometimes it will work. It’s worth a shot. Most airlines will give you a 100% refund if you cancel within 24 hours. So book your flight with the price you are comfortable with and just do a random check the next day to see if prices have dropped. If they have then give the old airline a ring and cancel (only if you can get the full refund) and then rebook. Shady you say? Whatever.

So try these little bad boys out and hopefully you can find the perfect flight in your budget starting first with COSTA RICA!!!!

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