5 Airfare Cost Killers

by Cindy Morgan

 5 Airfare Cost KillersGone are the days of $200 international airfares, but even with rising costs of air travel, travelers can use some of these great tactics to make sure they’re getting the best price next time you fly:

Set Travel Deal Alerts

These days, there are many travel deals but most of them are fast-ending, lasting just a few hours as seats fill up. To snap up good deals, travelers can sign up for general bulletins and alerts on specific routes from Airfarewatchdog, Bing Travel, and other sites. Alerts can also help after buying, if the airline or booking site offers a best-price guarantee.

Time booking

You might not know this, but studies show that the cheapest time to book a plane ticket is on a Tuesday afternoon, when the maximum number of sale seats is available. Experts say prices tend to rise seven and 14 days prior to departure, so book at least three weeks out – and ideally, more like three months out.

Combos are Better

Hotel-airfare travel packages are often cheaper than buying each component separately, to the extent that combo prices can be lower than just buying a flight alone, which makes them worth checking out even if you don’t need a hotel.

Consider alternate airports

Fare sales can often make one local airport significantly cheaper than another — price gaps that may be big enough to justify a longer drive to the airport or spending more time in the air. For travel abroad, fliers may be able to save by finding a fare sale to any major city and then hopping on a low-cost carrier to their intended destination. For example, Berlin might be $600 a trip, and everywhere else is $2,000.

Get the flexibility discount

Traveling on a Tuesday, Wednesday or Saturday usually results in a cheaper fare than on other days of the week. Using a flexible-date engine like Kayak, Google Flights or FareCompare can help you find the best deals. But don’t check just one site as many don’t include low-cost carriers like Southwest and JetBlue.

 

 

[Courtesy: SmartMoney Blogs]

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Enjoy these four savvy ways to appear chic and high-fashion while keeping your costs low.

 How to Stretch Your Clothing Budget and Look like a Celebrity

This is what a model version of me looks like icon smile How to Stretch Your Clothing Budget and Look like a Celebrity

1) Sign up for flash-sale sites.
Members-only websites, like Gilt.com, Ideeli.com, and RueLaLa.com , offer discounts of up to 60 percent on designer labels, such as JBrand and Michael Kors, for a very limited period of time (36 to 48 hours). Inventory goes quickly, so get there when the sales start (each day at 11 a.m. EST for RueLaLa and Ideeli; 12 p.m. EST for Gilt).

2) Ebay is more than just  vintage.
The auction site is rife with big-ticket purchases from shoppers who splurged and regretted. Search for items labeled NWT (new with tags) or NWOT (new without tags). Are you nervous about being outbid by those crazy eBayers? Sign up for eSnipe.com: Enter the most you’re willing to pay, then eSnipe bids for you in the auction’s last six seconds (and charges 1 percent of the auction price if you win).

3) Check out social media and mobile apps.
Follow designers on Twitter or Facebook to hear about exclusive deals, says Andrea Woroch, a Santa Barbara–based consumer-savings advocate and a frequent contributor to Fox News. One of her favorite apps is Coupon Sherpa. “You type in your store, click on a coupon, and present it on your phone to the cashier when you’re making your purchase.” For comparison shopping, Woroch likes Amazon’s iPhone app called Amazon Remembers, which has a feature that allows you to take a photograph of something while shopping, upload it, then get a roundup of similar items along with their prices.

4) Find costume jewelry that works.

You’ll have the most luck with reproductions of turquoise, coral, abalone shell, black jet, and silver-tone metal. Weigh your options: Jewelry that is heavier hangs better.

 

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