• Ala Grace

A Crash Course In Affordable Flights

No pun intended folks! So a little bit of real talk first. Its been a little while since I last blogged simply because before we left Jasper there was more work than pleasure happening and sometimes the hard taxing hours that go into maintaining my day job isn't something I wanted to share! I mean the last six months in Canada have been working full time as a Housekeeper, yep you heard it here first folks! So when the season was coming to an end and it was quite literally all hands on deck - I cant even remember how many ovens and floors were scrubbed - I felt it best to give the blog a little rest! Since then we have been on an exhilarating two week holiday that I spoke of a few entries back, travelling to the marvellous island of Maui, Hawaii and the ultimate family destination in Orlando, Florida. When we were looking into booking this holiday we made sure that we had done our homework, as you know its always been important to me to make sure I've covered all my bases! I suggested when browsing the interwebs to open your tabs in 'Incognito' mode. If you're familiar with this you will already know that Incognito mode will allow you to privately browse most online sites by disabling the cached browser history, meaning that the internet will not be able to store any information on what you research and use at a later date. For us when booking our flights, heck any flights or accommodation we've ever booked its a great way to ensure that you will pay the best price possible!

You see most airline and accommodation sites, like anything it seems on the internet these days will track and monitor your viewing, now I don't mean to sound a little paranoid or a conspiracy theorist but I first noticed this when booking through AirBnB, as amazing as that site is and you've heard me rave on before about the benefits and affordability of it, I noticed that if I search for accommodation in one place and then leave my computer and come back to it a few days even sometimes a week later the price will have gone up. This has only happened to me maybe twice out of the hundreds of times I have booked through AirBnB but evidently I did some research and learned that most Airlines will have a similar strategy when it comes to locking in their customers and ensuring the best price, for them that is. Now Incognito mode is not saving you any money, what it is enabling is for the intended site to see you as a new customer as they wont be able to see any form of search history meaning that you will be able to compare the market efficiently and effectively and find the most affordable price for you without the fact that most companies vie for the best price and as much as they want your business they also want your money.

This method may not work for you and thats perfectly okay too but I have found that it has really helped me in the past and it was how I found 6 flights for approximately $1000 per person. If you've travelled before and are aware of how costly international flights can be, you would also know how excited we were to find this awesome deal! When securing our flights I booked through Expedia. Do yourself a favour and create an account with this site, your free profile will make it so much easier for you to keep track of your itineraries and airline details, not to mention you can download a handy and accessible app for your phone but the best part is Expedia gives you reward points for every time you fly or stay in their listed accommodation or airlines, meaning that for future reservations you can save even more money. When you're on that site, Expedia will source all major airlines and compare them on the screen in front of you and for me I was able to search 'Multi city' flights which was how we found our awesome deal!

To find the best price for your travels I encourage you to be flexible not only with your schedule but also with your sanity - by the end of our trip we had flown 6 separate times in two weeks. Not enough caffeine in the world could help that kind of sleep deprivation! It is a proven fact that if you book your departing flight for a Tuesday you will find the better cost in comparison to a mid week flight or a weekend. My motto is avoid the people, you see the more people means more money. If you fly on the slower days not only will you have a cheaper flight but you will most likely have more breathing room near your seat and when you fly economy any small blessings can mean a world of difference and comfortability! Although in speaking of leg-room don't be afraid to move to an empty row of seats if your flight isn't very busy. My flight from Orlando, Florida to Ottawa, Canada was so empty and I wasn't seated next to the fiancee so we waited until they closed the doors to the aircraft and beee-lined it to an empty row. Most air hostess will allow this as long as all the other passengers are seated and comfortable!

Another little trick I have learnt is the earlier you arrive at the Airport for your flight the better! When checking in be sure to let the airline assistant know that you would like to be put on a 'stand-by' list. Meaning if they have spaces in business or even first class they need to fill, they will move up those on the stand-by list to provide more available space in economy. Its far easier to sell the cheaper seats than it is to sell a seat that averagely ranges anywhere from $5000 and higher and again if they can fill the aircraft then thats more money for them. CHA CHING!

My last little tidbit of advice would be prepared! You're going to want to have your own pair of headphones/ earphones, a water bottle and something warm to wear - no matter what your destination, for some strange reason everyone LOVESS to blast the AC and if you're a cold frog like me than I suggest a jumper! Never fear though if you simply just ask a flight hostess for things like earphones or a blanket they will usually provide it for no extra cost (depending on the airline you fly with - don't bother asking Air Canada they will charge you) and if you have a water bottle empty it before going through customs and then refill it on the other side - water is your best friend! Im sure there is so much more we could share when it comes to the tricks of the trade in Airports and booking but these are the things that have helped me the most - Happy flights friends!

Until next time, - Liz x

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