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Planning,  Flights,  Travel Tips

Is this the secret to the budget flight finder- Skyscanner

Oh Skyscanner, how I do love you. You were my first love for finding bargain flights and I will never forget you. I may cheat on you occasionally when you don’t quite manage to satisfy my needs but you will always be my first love.

Skyscanner has always been one of the tools we use to help find cheap flights. You can check out all our hints and tips for using skyscanner and finding yourself a bargain flight below.

Skyscanner Tips, Tricks, and Hacks to Save Money On Flights

family flight tips

Skyscanner is a great tool, but there is always a but, proceed with caution especially when not booking your bargain flights directly. You can access the website here or download the skycanner app if that tickles your fancy.

Let’s take a look at how to use Skyscanner to scan flights and find the best bargains for 2023.

Read the tips, use these skills and hacks to find the best routes, days, and deals.

How do we save money on flights?

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, flexibility is king but we all know that isn’t always possible.

If you need a direct flight on a certain day to a certain place you will probably not be particularly impressed with the magic that skyscanner can produce but if you have wiggle room when any of those components then prepare to be astounded* or just pleasantly surprised. Of course you can still find the flight options for your very specific flight on skyscanner.

Let’s start with the departure airport

Saving money with your departure airport

So, you’ve got Skyscanner open, first enter your departure airport in the FROM box.

You can be super specific here, with Heathrow for example. But you can broaden the options and choose London or if you have even more flexibility, the UK may be your departure point.

Enter two dates. In the to box you enter your destination.

Again, this destination doesn’t have to be specific, Everywhere works here too.

At this stage, Skyscanner find all the possible destinations I could travel to. Starting with the country, you can select the city you would like to travel too.

Once I’ve chosen my destination- Santiago de Compestela (I’ve heard it’s lovely) and then get an option of where to depart from.

Option 2 for saving money

How to save money with your destination

So perhaps I don’t have quite as much flexibility as I would like, I know that I have to fly out of a particular airport on a particular day but where should I go? Ta Da! Skyscanner will allow you to choose an explore everywhere option.

And the world is your oyster!

How to save money with your dates

Here is where things start to become beautiful. If you have the flexibility of dates, you can choose the month view.

Here Skyscanner will very kindly present you a colour coded month of prices available to the destination allowing you to see the cheapest departure dates, like so.

You also have an option to present this data as a graph if you are feeling all mathematical. Either method make it easy to spot the cheapest day to fly over a prolonged period.

You’re not confined to one month, Skyscanner’s blue arrow buttons next to the current month allow you to scroll forward or backward in time, month by month. 

Not Ready to Book? Sign Up for Notifications

On Skyscanner, you can choose to set alerts for particular flights. Just select the flight and day you want and click the button to allow notifications on this flight.  

Skyscanner will tell you if flight prices have increased or decreased. I find it’s always good to track a flight, and what you begin to see is how much certain flights can fluctuate in price.

Exploring Alternate Flight Routes in Skyscanner

You can use Skyscanner to find cheaper connections and routes. This takes a little digging around but you might find that fly. Now this takes a little bit of researching and probing around but you can make huge savings if you find a good deal. Take this flight for example. A flight from Manchester to Sharm El Sheikh in September is from 508GBP.

But, if I take a short flight to Milan (from 36GBP) and then a flight to Sharm El Sheikh (205GBP), I could save myself 267GBP. Depending how the flights work, I might need a night in Milan but hey that’s another little holiday and with my saving, I’m still spending less than the initial flight.

First find the cheapest destinations to travel to from your departure point. Enter your destination as your departure point and select everywhere as your destination as mentioned above. Your Skyscanner list will tell you which countries are cheapest to fly TO, it’s a pretty safe bet they’ll also be cheapest to fly FROM.

From here, add the cheapest city as your departure point and add your final destination.

Skyscanner is a definite hit for our family but we combine this with our other favourite flight search engine, Kiwi.com. You can read about finding the best deals on Kiwi.com here.

If you need any further help with using Skyscanner or help finding the best flights, drop me a message on Instagram or email.

Which is cheaper, booking direct with the airline or through agents?

This varies. Sometimes Skyscanner has by far the best deals, sometimes booking direct with the airline can give you the best deal.

We always book direct with the airline. We have heard too many horror stories of third party booking companies not sending through tickets, being unreachable and basically ripping people off. Even if you end up booking direct with the airline, Skyscanner can still be a great research tool.

Book direct with the airline or just be cautious of who you book with via Skyscanner.

Using Skyscanner to Find the Best Deal on Car Hire or Rental

Skyscanner has branched out over the years and you can also find great deals on car hire. We have had great success booking European car hire through the US Skyscanner system. I wish I could tell you why, but I have no idea.

Using Skyscanner to Find a Deal on Hotels

Absolutely you can do this. For me, it’s not a service I use, I’m not a fan of the pop up options it brings along with the searching for a hotel feature.

You Can Use Skyscanner on Your Laptop or Phone

As mentioned before, there is an app. Now, I’ve read mixed ideas around searching being influenced by previous searches. So, for me, I don’t use the app. I prefer to pretend they are watching me, stick my VPN on, clear cookies and go incognito on my quest for a cheap flight.Still on a quest for a cheap flight? Check out Kiwi.com. It’s also worth thinking about the cost of living at your destination. Perhaps the flight is a little more but you will spend a lot less when there. Check out our posts on Sri Lanka, Thailand and Vietnam for suggestions of low cost destinations.

HAPPY TRAVELS!

We hope these tips help you book your next adventure. Please let us know in the comments below.

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