Are you in the process of booking a flight? Do you have reason to believe that you’re making all the right decisions? Do you have some worries that you could be making a mistake that costs you time and money?
Even the most experienced travelers run into challenges every now and again. If you aren’t careful, you could make a flight booking mistake.
While there is no right or wrong way to book a flight, there are tips you can follow to put yourself on the right track. Here are five of the most common booking mistakes, as well as information on how to avoid them:
- Booking at the Last Minute
This is one of the biggest mistakes you can make, so you want to avoid it if at all possible.
For instance, if you search Hawaiian flights on Expedia a few days before you leave, you’re sure to pay a lot more money. Not to mention the fact that you won’t have access to nearly as many flights, which can make it a challenge to choose a day and time that fits into your schedule.
It’s not always possible to book far in advance – such as if you are taking a business trip at the last minute – but you should attempt to do so when possible.
- Neglecting to Search Online
Go back in time 20 years and booking a flight meant working closely with a travel agent or calling the airline direct.
You can still do both of these things, but you don’t have to go down this path. In today’s world, the internet will make your life much easier.
For example, you can go online to compare flights and rates. You can also obtain feedback from past travelers, giving you the ability to make more informed decisions.
The internet is your best friend when booking a flight or anything else pertaining to your trip.
- Sticking with One Date and Time
It goes without saying that you probably have a particular date and time on which you want to fly. While there is nothing wrong with this, you don’t want to lose all flexibility.
For example, you may find that flying on a Thursday instead of a Friday can save you big on the price of your ticket. Is this something you can work into your schedule?
As a flexible flier you’ll find it much easier to save money.
- Choosing the Wrong Class
Maybe you’re the type of person who wants to fly first class because of the comfort. Or maybe you want to fly economy because of the price (even though you may not be comfortable throughout the trip).
Before you make a decision, compare the price and amenities provided by each class. Doing so will help you decide how to best move forward.
Tip: if you’re taking a long flight, such as one to an overseas destination, it may be best to fly first class if you can afford it. The extra space, comfort, and service will go a long way in making your time in the sky more enjoyable.
- Forgetting to Learn More About the Cancellation Policy
It goes without saying that you have every intention of taking your trip. Unfortunately, you know that things can come up at the worst times.
For example, you could come down with a nasty case of the flu the day before you are set to fly. Do you really want to take to the sky when you’re feeling this way?
Before booking a flight, take the time to learn more about the cancellation policy. Some airlines will let you cancel your flight and use the credit toward another airline ticket in the future. Others, however, are not nearly as lenient.
You hope that nothing stops you from taking your trip, but you need to be prepared for anything that could come your way. If something bad happens, you may need to cancel at the last minute.
These are just a few of the most common flight booking mistakes, as well as some basic tips for avoiding each and every one.
If you have made one or more of these mistakes in the past, do whatever it takes to learn from your experience. And of course, if you have concerns about going down the wrong path in the future, create a plan for avoiding trouble.
What are your thoughts on flying? Are there any other flight booking mistakes that you urge other travelers to avoid at all costs? What steps do you take to prevent trouble when booking a flight? Share your personal tips and strategies in the comment section below. Your feedback can help other travelers book a flight with confidence.