If you are a frequent flier, then you must have come across plenty of cheap flights in the past. Airlines slash their fares to entice more travellers to choose them in place of their competitors. They can do so during low season, when introducing a new package or when they want to market themselves among many other reasons.
While cheap flights are seen as incredibly enticing deals to travelers on a budget, there are a lot of things you need to consider before you pay for the tickets. This should not be a time to think of a vacation you hadn’t even planned for and end up booking the flight hurriedly. Although it is super exciting to spot a cheap deal, before you commit, here are important facts you need to consider before booking your next cheap flight.
Understand the real cost
Once you spot a cheap flight deal or your bestie calls you to let you know a certain airline has slashed its fare to one of your favourite destinations, do not be so quick to pay for the tickets. Instead, take your time, do your homework and understand the real cost involved around the whole deal. It is the only way you can really tell if that cheap deal is indeed cheap.
You need to calculate the airline’s additional fees. Do not blindly book a flight and come to learn later that there were additional charges. You will feel like you were conned and you will have no one to blame. Also, check their cancellation and changes conditions. An airline that doesn’t accept changes even for a fee can really mess you up. You can even end up losing your money if something comes up and you are unable to travel at that particular time.
Above that, take time to relax and give your mind time to consider the real costs beyond the flight fares. You see, in the middle of the excitements you may end up forgetting other important aspects and put all your attention on the cheap flight. For instance, the flight rates could be very budget-friendly but the destination you are travelling to may not be. Beyond that, you may not get a good vacation experience you have always yearned for because your timings were wrong. Thus, before you book that cheap flight, consider the place you are travelling to as well.
The kind of a ticket you are buying
Obviously, you are not the only one who saw the airfare pop up. As much as you need to act fast before the deal is over or other travellers grab all the seats, do not be in too much rush. At least get to know a little more about the type of fare and the airline giving the offer. You may realize the ticket doesn’t cover some essentials such as baggage, seat assignment, etc and unfortunately, you have to pay extra for them. If for example, the ticket doesn’t cover for any luggage then you have to consider the cost because it’s difficult to travel without baggage even if you are going to for a one or two days’ vacation.
The air flight timings
Another vital thing to consider when booking a cheap flight is the air flight’s departure and landing timings. Most airlines tend to offer cheap deals during odd hours such as late night or early morning. That’s why you need to know the timings before you make the payment. Please note that there is nothing wrong with an early or late night flight. It can actually be a great deal for you depending on what you want to achieve. Again, if that is the only challenge, if it’s okay with you, you can compromise a little and save that extra cash. This is particularly a good option for a solo traveller who wouldn’t mind the experience. However, for families or parents travelling with their kids, this can turn out to be a nightmare. Before you book an early morning or a late-night flight, make sure your comfort and convenience are not compromised. And if it is, not to an extent you can’t bear with.
The airline’s airport
Before you give your credit card to pay for that cheap flight, ensure you know the airport your airline is from. Airlines are businesses just like any other business. No way will they just give out cheap tickets without any gain. They are in business to make a profit and not losses. That’s why you will find airlines giving cheap tickets to airports that are too far from the city. Since many travelers avoid such airlines because they end up spending a lot of money on transport to and from the airport, they are using cheap deals to lure travellers into choosing them. Less famous airports located outside the city will cost you a lot of money and time to reach there. Hence, make sure you do your calculations well before flying from a farther away airport. Cancel the deal if it will cost you what you would have saved if you chose a convenient airport.
Know your rights
Please, do not book a cheap flight before knowing your rights as a flyer. As a matter of fact, you are not being forced by anyone to use a certain airline. So, why should you book a flight when your rights are being compromised? You need to know about your safety when using the airline, cancellation terms and how to get a refund if the need arises. If you are satisfied with their terms and conditions, then you can book your flight. If you aren’t, wait until you can get an offer that sounds great to you or consider checking what other airlines are offering. At the end of the day, you will get a suitable deal. You just need to be patient.
Is booking a cheap flight always a great deal?
You love cheap deals because they give you a chance to save some money. While this is totally acceptable, at times, this may end up costing you more than you would have spent if you just paid the normal fare. So, before you hastily rush to book the flight because the rates are tempting, make sure you are satisfied with the services covered by the package, the timing is manageable and your airline’s airport location is convenient to you. There are some essentials you can’t do without and if you feel your comfort and convenience is not well taken care of, then that’s not a cheap flight deal and it’s high time you cancel that deal. There is no point in opting for a cheap flight only to realize later that you made a huge mistake. Take your time, regrets won’t refund back your money.