How to find cheap flights from your departure city

In the past months, Airline fares have increased significantly due to high fuel costs and higher demand.  Finding good deals has become more challenging.  Being flexible with your travel destination can increase your chances to find a good deal.  Here’s some tools to locate cheap flights from your departure city.

QFLY

Qfly.com focuses on European low-cost airlines.

Start with entering your departure city (1) and decide if you want to include nearby airports.  Select ‘All destinations’ (2) and set your maximum budget.  Indicate how flexible your are with travel dates in step (3) and (4).  You can save quite some money by traveling with hand luggage only on low cost airlines.  Qfly selects ‘Check-in luggage’ by default.  You might want to change this to ‘Hang luggage only’ in step (5).

After hitting the search button, Qfly indicates the airlines it consulted and the number of matching tickets found for your travel dates.

Results are presented on a map and as a list starting with the cheapest fares.  Not surprisingly Ryanair is at the top of the list.  In the left column of the search results you can tweak all original parameters set (departure airports, dates, max budget, etc..) and even exclude some destinations or airlines.  Once you decided on your flight, make sure to check the airfare on the airlines website.  It might be cheaper to book it directly via the airlines website.

KAYAK BUZZ


Kayak.com/buzz shows the best fares found by KAYAK users in the last 48 hours. Kayak includes some low-cost airlines, but focuses mainly on traditional airlines.  In the above scenario, I selected Brussels National Airport (BRU) as departure city and ‘Top 25 Cities’ – ‘Word Cities’ as destination.  You can also select ‘Lowest Fare’  in combination with your desired travel destination to get an overview of the lowest fares found by Kayak Users.

The ‘Leaving’ field allows you to indicate when you want to fly.

Once you hit the Search button, you get a list of the best fares found in the past 48 hours.  The shown dates might not fit your schedule, but from the example above you learn Geneva, Berlin, Madrid and Rome can be pretty cheap to fly to from Brussels airport.  As a next step you can hit ‘ Check Now’ to determine which airline is offering this cheap fare.  Once you know the airline, visit their website and use the flexible booking option.  You might find similar fares on your preferred travel days.

SKYSCANNER

Skyscanner.net allows you to search for the best fares found in the past ten days.  You can select a departure and return month or just search for the entire year.

The results are categorized per country.

Once you selected a country, you get to see all cities.

Next you select departure and return month.

Cheapest fares per day for the selected month(s) are shown.

After clicking ‘Show Flights’, the details of the available flights are revealed.

MORE TIPS

Sign-up for newsletters of airlines serving your favorite departure airports.  Many airlines (i.e. Lufthansa) send out regular promotional emails with exceptionally low fares available for a limited time only.

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