Travel Tips

SKYSCANNER IS YOUR FRIEND

…Just don’t be seduced by low fares, always think of the bigger picture.

 

Whenever I have a few days off and we’re in need of an adventure invariably my first port of call is Skyscanner because I love a bargain when it comes to travel.

You can get such crazy cheap flights these days that it can be more cost effective to go abroad for a few days than stay in the UK, especially if you live near one of the budget airports such as Stanstead.

If I need to get a flight to a certain place, I always check out Skyscanner to see the best deals. I love the fact that if you do have a bit of flexibility in your travel dates you can scroll through the days either side to see if there’s a bargain to be had.

Another favourite feature of mine is that you can search for the cheapest month to fly to a particular country or city. Perfect if you’ve always wanted to visit a certain place and aren’t fussed about when in the year you go.

However my absolute favourite thing to do on Skyscanner is search EVERYWHERE. If you’re like me and not bothered about where you go, you just want to conquer the world one mini break at a time it’s perfect!

Once I know the dates I can travel, I simply enter them, put flying from the UK, and select Everywhere as my destination.

TOP TIP: Use UK rather than a specific airport if you are able to travel and want to bag a bargain. You don’t tend to get the super cheap (think £5 one way) flights from regional airports as they usually go from places like Luton or Stanstead. It may cost you an extra £20 in petrol to get there but you could be saving yourself £100’s in flight cost. Or it could turn out to only be a £20 saving so make more sense to go from your local airport. Keep your options open and do some searching in other words!

For example travelling to London and flying from there even if you lived nearer to Birmingham would save you £119 per person, which is a whole lot more than the difference in petrol would cost!

Be aware the same places do tend to come up cheapest (Frankfurt in Germany and Billund in Denmark) which often means they’re the top hits in the search by country, so make sure you look through all the different options per country as you may find a more desirable city in a country even though it’s further down the list. I’ve just started using the Skyscanner app and it’s great for this as it shows you a few options per country.

Cheap flight prices can fluctuate hugely even within a few hours so if you see a bargain, grab it while you can. A flight for £15 isn’t likely to come down by much but it could suddenly double, triple or quadruple. On the flipside if it’s more than you really want to pay (and it’s not a trip you have to take or a place you have your heart set on travelling to) it’s worth holding off and keeping an eye on it, you can even set alerts through Skyscanner to monitor prices. If it doesn’t come down in price and you’re searching everywhere as a destination then another bargain may pop up instead.

Bear in mind cheap flights often fly into airports further out from your destination city, but don’t let this put you off. It’s just like flying into Stanstead instead of Heathrow when you come to the UK. Unless you’re in a huge rush, or you’re not in the market for a bargain, then it can definitely be worth the extra half an hour on a transfer versus the £100’s extra to fly into a more central airport. We did this when we went to Stockholm (which you can read about here) and saved a lot of money.

Finally, and most importantly, don’t get seduced by the low prices – always remember to add up the extras. A £10 flight to Nice, or a £7 flight to Sweden is so cheap it’s pretty irresistible but do do all your sums. By the time you add a return flight, then double the cost by two if you’re paying for yourself and a mini adventurer, then add on petrol to the airport, expensive airport parking, hotel costs and activities etc etc, it’s very easy for a £7 flight to turn into a £500 weekend away!

Which is fine if you’ve costed it all out and can afford it, but I know several people who have booked super cheap flights without thinking everything through and been surprised that their bargain weekend with a £15 flight is actually going to cost them hundreds of pounds!

Do you use Skyscanner, or do you pick up bargain flights elsewhere?

Where’s your favourite bargain break and what has been the cheapest fight you have bagged? Mine is a £7 flight from Stanstead to Stockholm!! Bargain! Let me know in the comments below.

 

I am not affiliated with Skyscanner, and I have not been paid for this article, I just really like a bargain!

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