ON AIR NOW

LISTEN NOW

Weather

cloudy-day
79°
Sct Thunderstorms
H 82° L 69°
  • cloudy-day
    79°
    Current Conditions
    Sct Thunderstorms. H 82° L 69°
  • partly-cloudy-tstorms-day
    70°
    Morning
    Sct Thunderstorms. H 82° L 69°
  • partly-cloudy-tstorms-day
    77°
    Afternoon
    Thunderstorms. H 80° L 69°
LISTEN
PAUSE
ERROR

The latest newscast

00:00 | 00:00

LISTEN
PAUSE
ERROR

The latest traffic report

00:00 | 00:00

LISTEN
PAUSE
ERROR

The latest forecast

00:00 | 00:00

Personal Finance
8 hacks for saving on holiday air travel
Close

8 hacks for saving on holiday air travel

8 hacks for saving on holiday air travel

8 hacks for saving on holiday air travel

When most people think about the upcoming holiday season, they usually focus their budgeting woes on gift shopping. But presents aren’t the only expense consumers should worry about.

Last year, Airlines for America projected that more than 45 million passengers would fly over Christmas and New Years. With the increasing demand for flights during this time of year, anyone who hopes to fly home for the holidays should be ready to shell out big bucks for airfare.

Luckily, you don’t have to blow your budget on travel.

Follow these eight tips to save on your holiday flight

Compare nearby airports

The key to saving on airfare is being flexible about when you travel and where you fly in and out of. Though main hubs servicing major cities and airlines typically offer the best prices, a nearby or smaller airport can sometimes be cheaper. Select the “search nearby airports” option when looking for flights on sites like Travelocity. You will also need to conduct a separate search on Southwest, as their flights are not listed on third-party booking sites.

Book one-way fares

While it’s a little more work, building your own flight itinerary by booking one-way fares on different carriers and in/out of different airports could result in considerable savings. This strategy also enables you to apply reward miles to one leg of the flight if you don’t have enough to cover the cost of a round-trip ticket. Plus, it’s easier and may be cheaper to buy a new one-way ticket if you have to cancel or amend a portion of your trip compared to paying ticket change fees.

RELATED: Warning: 8 ways to avoid car rental ripoffs this holiday season

Know when to book

The sweet spot for scoring the best deal on domestic flights is approximately six weeks prior to the desired departure date. But when it comes to the holidays, you have to book even earlier to save. According to a study by Hopper, an airfare price tracking site, holiday flights begin to steadily increase in cost as each day passes starting in November. The day of the week may also affect the cost of your ticket as many airlines release fare sales on Tuesday with savings of 15 to 25% off.

Pick travel dates strategically

When it comes to choosing the day and time to travel, think cost and not convenience. Since mid-morning and early evening flights are more preferable, they are usually more expensive. The first flight in the early morning is typically the least expensive, but that means you have to be ready to wake up at 4am or earlier if you want to save money. Lastly, you can usually score a cheaper flight by traveling on Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s Day since demand is down. For instance, Hopper’s Holiday Travel Index found that people flying on Thanksgiving will save $54 per flight on average. While it’s not ideal to travel during these holidays, arranging to celebrate earlier or later in the day allows you to spend quality time with family and friends while saving mucho dinero.

Keep an eye on flight prices

Airfare fluctuates throughout the day, week and based on booking demand so prices will go up and down regularly. Booking today could mean you miss out savings tomorrow, so start watching flight prices and track savings using Pintrips.com, which compares prices on travel with real-time price-tracking and offers an added social element to help you coordinate with your family and friends. Download the Hopper App to receive price drop notifications for your preferred itinerary, but don’t delay booking if a reasonable fare becomes available because chances are it will only get more expensive.

Book through a warehouse store

If you have a membership to a warehouse store like Costco or Sam’s Club, look beyond the bulk containers of ketchup and peanut butter to find savings. Through these retailers’ online travel portals, review booking options to find deep discounts on vacation packages which often include airfare, hotel and a rental car.

Score cheaper parking rates

Parking at the airport seems like no big deal during quick trips, even when rates run from $12 to $30 per day. For long trips, however, this cost can add up quickly and bust your holiday airfare budget. Luckily, there are many affordable parking lots near most major airports that travelers can take advantage of by doing a little research. Many of these cheap parking places offer direct, 24/7 shuttle service to airport terminals with rates are as low as $3.99 per day. Check AirportReservationsParking.com for a list of places to park on the cheap, and search for a coupon code to save on their $5 service fee.

Cut the extras

Beyond the cost of the airline ticket, there are many other expenses that come with traveling by plane that many consumers don’t budget for such as checked bag fees, inflight WiFi access, food and refreshments. When possible, pack light and ship gifts directly to your destination so you don’t have to check bags. For those who plan to connect to WiFi when flying, you’re looking at paying $8 per hour or up to $30 for long flights. Save by checking if the airline’s Internet provider has any promotions or coupon codes online before take off because you won’t be able to access these deals when airborne. Lastly, pack a reusable water bottle, snacks and a sandwich to save on food and drinks. Many airports have water stations so you can quickly fill your bottle before departure or during a layover. Keep in mind, the money saved on airport food can be used toward a more enjoyable meal at your final destination instead.

Save the most on your airfare

Read More

The Latest Headlines You Need To Know

  • Police in Orange County are looking for a person of interest in relation to a murder that happened Friday afternoon.   At 1:19 p.m., deputies responded to The Bondsman on West Michigan Street in reference to a check on well being. Upon arrival, a victim was found dead at the scene.    The person of interest is James Cole. Cole was accompanied by a black female and possible left the scene in the pictured car.    Anyone with any information on this case is asked to contact Crimeline at 800-423-TIPS(8477). There is a reward of up to $5,000 if it leads to an arrest.
  • Actor Joonas Suotamo, the man behind the famed wookie Chewbacca in the upcoming Solo: A Star Wars Story stopped by Disney's Hollywood Studios recently to take in the action of the park's Star Wars themed offerings. This all comes ahead of his scheduled appearance at the park's Star Wars: Galactic Nights event, which will take on May 27 and run from 7 p.m. until midnight.  The Star Wars themed event will feature unique exclusive photo opportunities, merchandise, and of course, the celebrities.  This year, Joonas will be a celebrity guest speaker to talk about his movie- making experience, as well as answer questions from some lucky fans.  Guests in attendance can also be expected to see the nods to the new movie during the fireworks presentation of Star Wars: A Galaxy Far, Far Away.  The Solo: A Star Wars Story movie will open in theaters on May 25th.  You can see the actor's experience in the park here:
  • Former President George H.W. Bush is known for wearing festive socks. He wore a special pair of socks Saturday to the funeral of his wife of 73 years, Barbara Bush, in tribute to her work in literacy awareness. >> Read more trending news  Barbara Bush, the wife of the nation’s 41st president and mother of the nation’s 43rd, died Tuesday at her Houston home. She was 92. Bush family spokesman Jim McGrath posted on Twitter that the former president is wearing socks festooned with books. McGrath went on to say that Barbara Bush's literacy campaign raised over $110 million in 30 years. The private funeral ceremony is being attended by approximately 1,500 invited guests, including first lady Melania Trump, former President Bill Clinton, former first lady and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, former President Barack Obama and former first lady Michelle Obama.
  • Approximately 1,500 guests attended former first lady Barbara Bush's private funeral ceremony in Houston Saturday. Barbara Bush, the wife of the nation’s 41st president and mother of the nation’s 43rd, died Tuesday at her Houston home. She was 92. About 2,500 mourners paid their respect at a public viewing held Friday in Houston, The Associated Press reported. >> Read more trending news  The service took place at St. Martin’s Episcopal Church in Houston. Jeb Bush delivered a eulogy for his mother. Longtime friend Susan Baker and historian Jon Meacham also gave remarks during the 90-minute service. Multiple musical selections were performed. A procession followed, with burial at the Bush Library at Texas A&M University in College Station. Barbara Bush will be buried next to her daughter, Robin, who was 3 years old when she died of leukemia in 1953, The AP reported. Notable guests included first lady Melania Trump, former President Bill Clinton, former first lady and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, former President Barack Obama and former first lady Michelle Obama, The AP reported.
  • The Florida Department of Law Enforcement is investigating after a man in Orlando is dead following a deputy involved shooting Friday evening.  It happened around 8:30 p.m. near West South Street and Lime Avenue.  Orange County Deputies say 48 year old James Bauduy was wanted after reportedly shooting and killing his girlfriend's 82 year old mother, Elfriede Asendorf, and then carjacking his girlfriend earlier this week in the Conway-Windermere area.  After receiving a tip, deputies were able to locate him. Bauduy was shot by two deputies, but it is unclear if the man was carrying a weapon.  He was then taken to the hospital, where he died. The deputies in the involved shooting were not hurt. At least half a dozen shots were reportedly fired during the incident.  Both deputies have been reassigned to administrative duties for no less than a week, pending the investigation.