Tips for Cheaper Airline Flights

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A close friend of mine is getting married in Puerto Rico in June. To me, a destination wedding is an excuse for another vacation in addition to the rest of the vacations I’ve planned or will plan this year. It by no means will replace a vacation. I had already booked my flights with American Airlines for this wedding, but a friend who is also attending the wedding emailed me to help her find cheaper flights – the least expensive flight she could find was about $515 roundtrip from Charlotte.

So I immediately got to work to find her a cheaper fare. I went on (my favorite site for aggregating flight prices), and noticed that the cheapest roundtrip flight was in fact the amount she told me. However, what does not do a great job with is looking into flights as if they are one-ways and giving you different airlines on the departure and return. Knowing this, I went ahead and looked into one-way flights. She could take Delta for the departure for $211 (including taxes) and than US Airways on the way home for $249 (including taxes). Immediately this was a savings of $50 from a round-trip on US Airways. I then thought about it and remembered that when I was looking for flights for myself the day prior from NYC a one-way on US Airways on the return was much less than $200. So I re-looked into a one-way US Airways flight cost from Puerto Rico to NYC and it was $185 (with a layover in Charlotte!). Ultimately the US Airways flight to Charlotte was more than the same flight to Charlotte then continuing to NYC. Since Charlotte is a huge hub for US Airways I started looking into other cities from Puerto Rico that would stop in Charlotte then continue on to its final destination. I tried every airport code I could think of and flying to Dallas was the cheapest option at $182. My friend would then get off the plane in Charlotte and not transfer to the 2nd leg of the flight continuing onto Charlotte. This flight was$67 less than the flight ending in Charlotte. Immediately my friend booked these flights for a total savings of about $120 than what she found on

Remember though – if you are checking baggage this tactic will not work! Additionally, make sure this is your final destination, once you miss a leg – they will cancel the rest of your itinerary on the same reservation number.

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Andrew Pelt
9 years ago

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