10 tips for finding cheap flights during the school summer holidays

Tuesday, 5th June 2018, 10:07 am
Updated Tuesday, 5th June 2018, 12:28 pm

For those with families, job commitments and a preference for warm weather, summer is the best time to go on holiday.

But this also makes it the most expensive time, as prices are hiked during peak school holiday season, especially when it comes to flights.

Fortunately, there are a few tips and tricks which can allow travellers to find cheap flights during the summer holidays, meaning you don’t have to miss out due to sky high prices.

If you are able to fly back to a different airport from the one you departed from, this can allow for cheaper flights (Photo: Shutterstock)

1. Don’t book direct

Avoid going straight to the airline website, as the cheapest fares are often found by booking with various online travel agencies.

Google Flights is a great resource that enables you to track flight prices across the different airlines by setting yourself an alert when something changes.

Comparison sites such as Skyscanner or Opodo are can also save you money by not booking direct, and showing how dates and destinations affect the cost.

2. Use an incognito window

Using an incognito window when searching for flights can help avoid companies tracking what you’ve been searching and inflating prices as a result.

In Google Chrome or Safari, incognito is enabled by hitting Control (or “Command” if using a Mac), Shift, “N”. For Mozilla Firefox or Internet Explorer, hit Control (or “Command” if using a PC), Shift, “P”.

3. Travel at the end of the school summer holidays

For those who can only travel during the school holidays, many will opt to go away within the first few weeks after a long wait for the start of summer.

Even though waiting until the very end of the school holidays may seem like a long wait, this can result in cheaper flights and better deals.

4. Chop and change airports

If you are able to fly back to a different airport from the one you departed from, this can allow for cheaper flights.

This way you can opt for cheaper one-way tickets from a wider choice of airports.

5. Book last minute

Although it’s been advised in the past to book your flights approximately 54 days before departure, booking at the absolute last minute can also help you bag a bargain.

It's a bold move and is sometimes tricky during the school summer holidays, but if it works it can save you a lot, so if you’re feeling daring it’s worth giving it a go.

6. Fly indirect

Although your trip may take longer, this can be a great way of making huge savings. Mixing and matching airlines can also make it easier on the purse-strings too.

There are a few tips and tricks which can allow travellers to find cheap flights during the summer holidays (Photo: Shutterstock)

7. Avoid travelling on the weekend

Saturday and Sunday are usually the most expensive days to travel so if you have the flexibility to opt for a midweek flight, this could save you a considerable sum.

8. Be flexible with dates

Again, if you can be flexible with your dates of travel this helps a lot with bagging the best deals and allows you to shop around a bit more.

9. Check out the competition

Don’t be afraid to shop around and perhaps look at airlines you haven’t flown with before.

There are quite a few budget airlines out there to choose from, but non-budget airlines can also have good deals too, so make sure to explore all options.

10. Be flexible with the destination

Although you might have your heart set on a particular destination, being flexible (that word again!) can save a lot of money.

If you go to a lesser-travelled country or destination or even an undiscovered gem, this can allow you to both beat the crowds and the price tags.

You may also be able to find a similar destination or somewhere close to where you originally had in mind, meaning you don’t have to miss out but can save a few pounds and visit somewhere new.