Air Travel Tips & Tricks

Air Travel Tips & Tricks

1. The Best Time to Buy Air Ticket

According to Rick Seaney, the CEO and Co-Founder of FareCompare, the best shopping period for low airfares is between three and a half months and 30 days before departure – no sooner or later! For example, fares on United for non-stop flights from Houston to LAX are $442 (3 months in advance), $494 (30 days in advance), and $1,259 (same- day departure). And based on an in-depth study of FareCompare’s huge airfare database – the world’s largest, in fact – the best days to fly are Tuesday, Wednesday, and Saturday, with Wednesday offering the cheapest airfares. The most expensive days to fly? Fridays and Sundays! And if you’re an early bird, you’re in luck – the cheapest flights are usually the early morning flights (i.e., 6:00 a.m.)!

2. The Cheapest Time to Fly of the Year 

Hotwire.com’ Trip Starter helps you choose the cheapest time to fly of the year. Simply input your origin and destination, you will see the historical average airfares of for each month of the year.

Travel at low season can also save you from crowded flights and long waiting time in airport. Here is an example of a search for flight from Seattle (SEA) to Los Angeles (LAX).

3. Get Email Alerts for the Best Air Fares

Skyscanner compares millions of flights to find you the cheapest deal. Moreover, its hotel and car rental searching system provides super convenience for viewing different deals at a time. You can also monitor particular flight price is you sign up for email price alert service. Make sure you get the best price on your chosen route. 

4. The Affordable Destination within Your Budget

Kayak.com helps you easily to figure out all the options of affordable destinations around the world. Enter the origin and it will display all the possible air travel destinations along with fares, including taxes and fees. 

5. Get Airline Refunds If Your Airfare Drops

Yapta.com will help you keep track of your airfare after you’ve booked your ticket. If your fare drops within 24 hours of booking, you have the right to change or cancel your ticket without penalty. Once 24 hours have passed, however, you can still get a credit from nine domestic airlines that offer refunds. Yapta has saved travelers an average of $334.16 per person annually and over $250,621,489 for all of its members since May 2007.

Here below are the refund policies for different airlines as per price drops. 

6. Go Through Airport Easily

Travelnerd.com guides travel through the entire air travel experience by providing

- details on transportation to and from the airport (taxis, shuttles, etc.)

- customized terminal maps with gate numbers and airport service locations, such as lounges, baggage claim, elevators, nurseries, pet relief areas, etc.

- airport services for special travel needs including families, disabilities and business travellers

7. Double Check Airport Luggage Scales

According to ABC News report in November 2013 the Arizona Department of Weights and Measures found that 29% of the airline scales at Phoenix and Tucson airports were inaccurate. Be sure to weigh your bags on a different airport scale if you suspect the luggage scale at check-in counter is faulty. Double-checking could save you from paying $50-$100 overweight baggage fees!

Instead of using your bathroom scale or just “guess-timating,” you’d better prepare a luggage scale to save you out from all these expensive baggage overweight hassles.

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8. Check on Carry-on Luggage Size Limit

Measuring the size of your suitcases and carry-ons is also a must in order to avoid paying extra baggage fees. Domestic airlines charge $75-$200 for oversized baggage exceeding 62 or 63 linear inches (L+W+H).

Use TravelNerd’s Carry-on Luggage Size Chart to help you get know of the size limit and identify which airlines will charge you if you have to check a bag before boarding.

9. Take A Foldable Bag In Case of Overweight

If you are suddenly caught with overweight charges, just unfold your expendable bag to avoid excess baggage charges, to carry your gifts and souvenirs, or to transfer your things from your damaged suitcase. 

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10. Get More Legroom On Your Next Flight – For Free

Score an Extra Seat

If you're traveling as a party of two, choose one aisle seat and one window seat in the same row. If only the middle seat is empty, it's unlikely that another passenger will deliberately choose to sit there if other options are available. When you board the plane, you may find yourself with an extra seat between the two of you. If someone does choose that middle seat, that passenger will usually be happy to trade with one of you so you can both sit together. 

Get Seat Alert

Just because you can't get a seat today doesn't mean you won't be able to grab it tomorrow. But who has time to check and re-check the seating plan? This is where ExpertFlyer comes in. The website's Seat Alert feature allows you to set up the system to send you notifications when the seats you want become available. 

11. Join TSA Pre√® to Speed Through Security Lanes

 

By enrolling in the TSA Pre√® program, you can use the speedier TSA Pre√® lanes for both domestic and international flights at over 115 U.S. airports. You will benefit from shorter lines and shorter wait times, and best of all, you will no longer need to take off your belt, shoes, and jacket or remove your 3-1-1 compliant bag and laptop from your carry-on! There is an application fee ($85, valid for five years), and you are required to provide fingerprints, but once you are approved, you will receive a Known Traveler Number (KTN) for use whenever you book your tickets. This Comparison Chart provides an overview of TSA Pre√® along with three other Trusted Traveler programs offered by U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP)

Note: The 11 TSA Pre√® participating airlines currently include Air Canada, Alaska, American, Delta, Hawaiian, JetBlue, Southwest, Sun Country, United, US Airways, and Virgin America Airlines. 

12. Contact TSA Cares for Special Assistance

 

If you or someone you are traveling with has a disability or medical condition that requires extra time or assistance, be sure to contact TSA Cares at least 72 hours in advance to inquire about screening policies or to request a Passenger Support Specialist. There can be delays for travelers who don’t take this step, so calling in advance is highly recommended. 

13. Bring A TSA Lock to Secure Your Baggage 

 

The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) now suggests you lock your checked baggage with TSA-accepted and recognized locks. Airport security professionals can directly open your TSA locks, inspect, and relock your bags without cutting or damaging. 

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14. Have Email Copy of Your Personal Belongs

 

Be sure to take photos of your passport, ID, credit cards, itinerary, packed belongings, and anything else of value. Then email these images to yourself so that you have digital copies just in case of theft or loss during your trip. And if the airlines happen to lose your bags, you’ll be able to prove the value of your packed belongings without a sweat! 

15. Carry a Neck Pouch for Valuables Hiding

Keeping all your valuable items of passport, mobile phones etc., safe are an essential issue in traveling. A neck pouch can be an effective way to do this and free your hands. 

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16. Bring a Travel Adapter If Yo Fly Overseas

A travel adapter can save you from the troubles when the country you stay uses different wall plugs. It usually provides 4 types of plugs covering many countries worldwide. But note that most travel adapters do not convert voltage. Special Deal: Get 20% OFF Coupon Code 20TI2AMZ at checkout on Amazon / checkout on brand store 

17. Charge Your Phone With a TV

If you forget to pack the wall plug- in for your phone charger, check the back of the flat screen TV in your hotel room. There should be a USB port that you can use to power up your phone. Pretty neat idea, right? 

18. Secure Your Luggage With a Luggage Strap

A luggage strap can prevent your luggage open and keep your belongs safe in case it’s over stuffed. It also reduces the chance of theft if you choose one with TSA lock, and speed up airport check out if the strap is in a unique color. 

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19. Take a Neck Pillow with Your Fly

To improve the quality of sleep on airplane, you should choose a right neck pillow. It can provide sufficient support to relieve your tension on shoulders and neck in your air traveling, which will make your fly much easier and more comfortable. Special Deal: Get 20% OFF Coupon Code 20TI2AMZ at checkout on Amazon / checkout on brand store 

20. Use Refill Bottles for Your Toiletries

Airplane carry-on approved (TSA approved), food-safe (FDA) and 100% BPA and PC-free bottles should be your priority when choosing travel bottles. Carry some with you in case your luggage delay, and you still have all these toiletries to make yourself fresh. 

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