Booking a flight is probably the biggest obstacle for any traveler. There’s no way to rephrase it: they’re crazy expensive and they are unpredictable. You might check a flight on a Monday and check the same flight again that Thursday and see a price increase as high as several hundred dollars. What do these price fluctuations depend on? The airlines mere whim? Are they throwing darts with a hand over their eyes and changing the price depending on what field the dart lands in? We’re here to help you game their system because we believe the opportunity to travel should be available to more people. Check out how to get better flights at better rates so that you can come and witness the glory of Niagara Falls and check out the awesome city of Ontario without dipping into your rainy day funds. 

It’s All In The Search Engine

Just like you refuse to use Bing (well, most of us do), you should refuse to use lesser flight search engines. Don’t know where to start? Don’t worry. We do. Check out our top recommendations here: 

  1. Skyscanner (The King) 
  2. Cheapoair (Might have hidden fees, but is mostly really reliable)
  3. AirFare Watchdog (Catch the errors and sales from the airline’s slip-ups)
  4. Google Flights (Keeps an eye out on fluctuating prices for you and sends you updates)
  5. Hopper (Give them dates and location, and they’ll keep you passively notified) 
  6. Momondo (Searches all flight search engines for you and can often find better discounts than some of the better engines)
  7. Kiwi (Great for connecting flights and cheap layovers)
  8. AirWander (Makes it easy to extend layover schedules so you can organize a multi-stop trip with ease) 

With the list above, keep in mind that these engines inflate these prices a bit so that they can get a cut too. But, they don’t do it to the extent that truly bad search engines like Expedia and other uber popular search engines do. If they’re making enough money to bombard you with commercials, it’s a pretty safe bet that they’re one of the more expensive options out there. We recommend running the same dates through plenty of different search engines and price comparing. You’ll likely see the same flight for different prices across all of them, which helps you jump on the cheapest ones, obviously. Don’t rule out AirWander just because you think that you’re not interested in a stop over. Sometimes they’ll find you a way to actually lower the price of your flight if you stay three days in another city before continuing on to your ultimate destination. As a general reference, use Skyscanner as the controlled variable as they tend to keep their prices the cheapest of all. 

Go Incognito

We cannot sing the praises of incognito browsing enough. There are a variety of reasons to avoid cookies online like the plague, but there’s no more powerful reason to pop open an incognito than when you’re shopping for flights. If you search a flight a couple of times in your browser, you’ll get a cookie for every time you searched for the flight. Essentially it’s a little nugget of information, which when compiled together, helps your search engine and websites understand your wants and needs while you’re online more effectively. If they see you’ve searched a couple of dates for a specific destination a couple times, they determine you’re looking for flights pretty ardently and this isn’t a casual perusal of flight deals. Thus, they’ll start raising the prices on you, because it’s not just a good you’re looking for, it’s a good they know that you really want, so they figure you’ll probably pay a premium for it. The incognito window doesn’t allow them to collect those cookies on you. So every time you visit a site in an incognito window, that site won’t recognize you. Thus, they won’t show you higher prices for flights they know you want, because they have no idea what you want. Private browsing is great for flight browsing. 

Find a Good Day To Fly Out

You’ve probably heard that booking on Tuesday is the sure fire way to get inexpensive airfare. Unfortunately, there’s no real consistently more inexpensive day for flights. The only hard and fast rule is that weekday flights tend to be less expensive because those are mostly used by business travelers, rather than the average tourist who’s probably going to try and preserve their paid time off and manipulate their trip dates for that reason. The best way to determine the cheapest day to leave is to get an entire month overview. This is one of the reasons that Skyscanner is king — because you can choose the “whole month” option instead of specific dates when browsing tickets. You can pick a month that’ll loosely fit in your schedule, and get a calendar overview of the ticket costs to and from your desired destination based on the entire month. This will ensure you pick the cheapest days for your upcoming trip. 

Travel Credit Cards

If you’re looking for a way to save money on travel as a whole, oh buddy, have we got a suggestion for you. We know that most people think of credit cards and then promptly are reminded of those days in college when they were convinced that it was just a card that you swipe and it gives you money to spend, miraculously. We all know how those shenanigans ended, but the fact of the matter is credit cards aren’t at all scary if you pay them off as you use them, especially if you’re just using it to accrue the money back that they like to offer as incentives when you sign up for the card. You can use a card that gives you money back for every purchase you make that goes strictly toward travel expenses. Many people are able to pay-off their airfare for entire trips in this fashion as the cards will often offer a signing bonus of points which can be worth quite a bit of dough. If we were to suggest one, we’d recommend the Capital One Venture Card.  Sure, it’s $95 a year, but you can earn 2x miles on every dollar you spend, and the best part is that the Capital One miles work on any type of travel expense. Use a taxi while in Ontario? You can pop on the card and use your points for that. Want to pay for your tour of Niagara Falls along with your hotel room? Your points (if you have enough) can pay for all of that too. This is, of course, without paying a dime past what you’ve already used the card for and collected points from. Most travel cards don’t allow this level of freedom and often require you to only spend your miles on airfare ticket pricing, which does not include taxes and fees and other charges that are usually rolled into a ticket price. 

Book Your Ontario Trip and Tour Today

VIP Ontario Tours is excited to see where your adventures lead you. We firmly believe that travel should be widely accessible and by utilizing a few of the above tips, you can make traveling to exotic locals and exciting destination cities affordable and stress free. If you find yourself in Ontario, look us up to find the best Niagara Falls tours and city tours around.