1. Time your flight purchase
This is the most frequently asked question we get at Curated Travel – how long before our trip should we book our flight? Our advice is 9 months to a year in advance, if you are travelling to a tourist hot spot in peak season e.g. New York over Christmas (but then, you can forget about being a budget traveller here). Otherwise, for non-tourist hot spots, 2 – 3 months in advance should get you better prices. That being said, we always advise our clients to keep a lookout for airfare promotions and make their purchases should they like what they see.

2. Rework your travel itinerary
Airport taxes vary by well, airport, so for those planning multi-city trips, arrange your itinerary so you fly into the cheapest cities. For example, airport taxes at London Heathrow can cost twice as much as the taxes at Paris Charles de Gaulle so if the London Bridge and Eiffel Tower are part of your holiday sightseeing, why not fly into Paris and take the Eurostar to London instead of the other way around?

3. Time your departure
More often than not, it is cheaper to fly out on a Tuesday or Wednesday versus a Friday evening. Be flexible with your departure dates and use a fare calendar to determine the best day for you. In addition, red-eye flights tend to cost less than those that leave at more decent times in the day.

4. Mix and match your airlines
Purchasing one-way tickets from two different airlines (aka hacker fares) can prove substantially more cost-effective than purchasing round tickets from one airline. Use airfare aggregator sites like Kayak or Skyscanner to conveniently suss out airline routes and compare prices.

5. Shop around
As tempting as it may look, don’t purchase from the first site you use. Try out a few fare aggregator sites to get indicative prices then head to the airline’s site to check if they can offer you a better deal. This also gives you an opportunity to see if they have promotional fares if you book directly with them.

6. Clear your computer between searches
Booking sites often use cookies to track your searches so clear your cache and cookies especially if you are browsing on different days. Otherwise, they could be displaying the old prices and you could miss out on the best price.

7. Exercise the 24-hour rule
Most airlines have a 24-hour window when you can cancel your tickets without penalty. After you have finally booked your ticket, check back with the airline’s site the next day (after you have cleared your cookies!) to see if the price of your ticket has fallen. Do confirm the 24 hour policy before cancelling your ticket, of course – you do not want to end up with unnecessary expenses!