Summer or winter, high or low season… no matter the time of the year, when it comes to traveling, all we really want to know is how to find the best-priced airline tickets.
In this comprehensive guide, you will learn how to find cheap tickets on flight search sites, you’ll also find out about the best day and time to buy tickets, understand price factors, loyalty programs and more.
First things first, let’s talk about a question we get from most of our customers: Why doesn't Bonitour sell airline tickets? Well, we understand that it is best to leave customers free to choose how to travel to our destinations and therefore buy where and how they prefer.
And to help you find the best option, we've prepared this guide to tell you all about finding the best airfare. So, when you are planning to travel, you can save on transportation and make the most of your chosen destination. Check out all our tips!
Whenever we are planning for the next vacation trip, searching for promotional airline tickets is highly recommended. But how to go about finding the best prices?
This question can be answered in various ways, but in this first topic, we'll talk about the best tools available to help you find cheap tickets.
Google does not play around, so if they tackle a segment, you can be sure they’ll stand out from its competitors. In the travel segment it would be no different.
Google Flights is an online service platform that provides users with flight booking, search by number of stopovers, best prices, different airlines and travel times.
Through the search engine itself, you’ll be able to find the best airline ticket option. After making your choice, you are directed to the final purchase page within the third-party website (airlines, travel agencies, etc).
Similar to the search engine service, Skyscanner also has the function of filtering the best prices for the desired air tickets. The difference is that you can see the list of all offers for the same flight with the rating of each agency or airline.
Another good feature is that you can search on nearby dates or by month. That way, if you don't have an exact date for the trip, you can see nearby days and pricing options.
Kayak is another company that can help you plan and buy your flight without facing the pressure of agencies. In addition, the site offers a complete travel structure for its customers, flights, hotels, cars, trains, routes, etc.
Besides cheap air tickets, you can find accommodation and even rent a car to your chosen destination. Best of all, they have a complete app and you can also do it all from your mobile phone.
Booking.com was founded in 1996 and it is the largest travel fare aggregator website. You can book a hotel or find cheap airline tickets very easily on their website.
Booking works in 228 countries and territories in more than 40 languages. But what makes it stand out is that, in addition to offering you the options of flights and prices, it also has a whole range of unique accommodations, from the most traditional ones such as hotels and houses, to cabins and cottages.
Also, customers can use Booking experiences, a great product that gives suggestions about what to do at your destination of choice.
The best part of booking.com is the tips that appear in the upper-left corner after you select the dates and destination. Booking notifies you if the price is likely to rise or not, based on price changes of the previous years.
Even if in crisis, the tourism sector has gone back to growing in recent years and the expectation is the same for this year, which according to studies by Axon Latam , is expected to grow 65% by the end of the year.
Therefore, the growth of companies in the segment has also risen. This is obviously great news for tourists, who now have several options when planning their trips. In addition to these platforms that we mentioned, we also recommend the following:
Our advice, among so many options, is to select the one that offers the best usability according to your profile and that, of course, offer services that meet your expectations, such as the option to enable flight price tracker.
Airline search engines come across some issues on a daily basis. Because they depend solely on the prices offered by the airlines, prices may change without prior notice.
That is, when you receive a notification that there is a promotional ticket and go ahead to make the purchase, this price can be adjusted (usually it becomes more expensive) and then you get a message with the updated price.
Therefore, it’s important that you always look for platforms that grant chargeback at the same time to avoid affecting your card limit. To better understand how airfare pricing works, read this guide to the end.
You are probably wondering: Is there, in fact, a right time to buy tickets? The answer is yes there is! And we are not talking about the best season, but the best time.
Let's explain the difference. Getting the right time means being on the lookout for any airline ticket deals that may come up at random times - yes, they come up and down and you will understand why that happens.
Without a doubt, this is the best resource to help you find the cheapest airline tickets . Within the platform of your choice, you can enable the option to receive flight alerts when there are top-notch discounts.
To avoid getting too many notifications on your phone or email, try selecting the most likely travel destinations, the price range you’d like, and even the date you plan to travel. When there is an offer that meets the parameters, you will be alerted and can take advantage of the best deals.
Now, let's talk about the best time to buy tickets and plan a cheap trip. Is there really a time or day, when tickets are cheaper? Or do only the date and boarding time influence prices? Find out!
If you do a quick online search you’ll probably find articles telling you to buy airline tickets at dawn. The reason? According to them, during these hours they tend to be cheaper than during business hours, as demand is lower.
But how much truth is there to this statement? According to a study by Momondo , there is little to no difference in prices searched at dawn or during the day.
In fact, what we can say is that choosing red-eye or night flights makes the tickets cheaper. During this time, the airports are less busy and companies tend to have better prices.
Therefore, staying up late will not guarantee the best airfares. However, check out our other tips to get good discounts:
This is undoubtedly the best tip we can give you. If you want to find great prices when buying tickets, plan ahead. The closer you are to the boarding date, the more expensive it will be.
The Momondo Annual Flights Study, the same we mentioned above, from 2016, indicates that the ideal time for cheaper tickets is to book 56 days in advance. The best day to board is Tuesday and the most expensive Saturday.
Seasonal dates are always a way to measure whether to purchase or not airline tickets. If you want to find lower prices, Black Friday is the best date on the calendar to buy cheap tickets online without a doubt.
Scheduled annually to fall on the 4th Friday of November, the date brings together promotions in various segments, including the tourism sector. Prior to Black Friday , it is essential to research the average prices charged by companies to find out if you are really taking advantage of a promotion or not.
To avoid any kind of fraud, several institutions earn a badge to confirm they are effectively applying promotional prices to their offers. Make sure the platform and/or airline you choose is offering real discounts.
We have already told you a few spoilers on how airfare pricing works, but now we are really going to give the game away, or rather, the strategies used by airlines when setting prices.
First of all, don’t forget that airfare prices are not like products sold in the market or in stores, which have fixed values. Airlines - all of them - use other forms of pricing, which are associated with supply and demand.
To help you get a grasp on flight pricing, what do you know about the methods used to sell tickets, divided into batches? Well, the method used by airlines follows a very similar reasoning.
This is more or less the reaction most people have when they receive or find a promotional link from an airline ticket and when they click, the price is different. No, companies are not trying to fool you. That airfare really did exist, but it sold out.
But how do I still find seats available on the same flight? Well, it goes like this: Companies divide the plane into batches, and each has an X number of seats available and a Y value to be charged.
That is, that amount of $ 100 you saw may belong to the first batch. When it runs out, it automatically starts selling the second, which may cost $ 150. After the total sale of this second batch, a third one sells for $ 250.
So instead of adding the amount of these three batches and dividing it evenly for all of the seats, companies use another method. The higher the demand (people who wish to buy tickets) for the destination, the more expensive the value of tickets will be.
Thus, on the same plane you can find passengers who paid up to 150% more than others, even though they bought the same services. But there are also other methods used in ticket pricing ...
In short, delayed flights are often more expensive. But how do companies sell the most expensive tickets knowing that the flight will most likely be late? Based on its history.
If that route has very frequent delays, companies sell the tickets with higher fares to cover passenger assistance and even fuel costs.
Want an example in practice? Flights departing from the city of Sao Paulo in Brazil on afternoons in January. The city is used to getting heavy storms that often result in delays of various flights at the city's airports.
Tourists often intensify their search for flights during the holidays and peak season. On other dates, the most traffic inside airports is made up of those who usually travel for work. And just like in large cities traffic, peak hours can be an issue.
To get an idea, at Congonhas Airport, the second busiest in Brazil, flying between 1 pm and 2 pm or 5 pm and 6 pm tends to be more expensive. By contrast, at the same airport, flights departing at dawn or between 8am and 12pm are cheaper. Pay close attention to the time you’re searching!
You might imagine that traveling on holidays and weekends also costs more. Also, besides economy, there are other classes on planes that are more comfortable and exclusive. Learn the difference between them.
To cater for almost everyone’s tastes and wallets, airlines divide seats into several classes. Do you know them all? Check them out:
🧳 Premium economy;
🧳 First class;
However, these classes do not apply to all aircrafts and/or airlines. In some countries, airlines do not have the first class on domestic flights, only on international ones.
Want to learn more about the features and advantages of each class? Take a look below and also find out how to change from one class to another spending a little or nothing at all!
For sure, the most sought-after class among all. Being the basic option, it is also the cheapest among those already mentioned. When looking for low-priced options, a seat in economy class is the way to go.
Its main features are: the seats tend to be close to each other and recline a few inches only. The menu is usually standardized according to the duration of the flight and, depending on the airline, the passenger may choose more sophisticated menu items when available.
Less well-known and not as sought-after as the previous class, the premium economy is also called the elite economy class. This falls in the middle ground between standard economy and business class.
Its main difference lies is in the distance between the seats, which are up to 40% more spacious. Another benefit is the menu, which tends to be more varied and baggage allowance also tends to be better.
With even more perks, the business class is usually the most luxurious for national flights in many countries That is, by choosing this option, you can be sure you’ll find comfort and exclusivity from boarding to landing at the desired destination. However, you may need to pay up to three times more than in economy class.
The main features of flights in business class are: more comfortable seats which recline further, an even more sophisticated menu, VIP area, priority check-in and boarding, among other services that you should check according to the airline you’ve chosen.
Here is where you’ll find true luxury. Exclusive to international flights, depending on the country, this class has the highest prices and is the most sophisticated of all.
Those who opt for this option may even forget that they are travelling from thousands of kilometers from the ground amid such luxury. But for such comfort it may be necessary to pay up to seven times more.
First class passengers will find exclusive services such as menus signed and/or prepared by renowned chefs, personalized service, luxury suites, among other pampering. Keep in mind the perks vary according to the company chosen.
Most people want to save money when they travel, whether for business or on vacation. In this process, it is a priority to pay as little as possible on airline tickets, would you agree?
But did you know that even by choosing the most affordable class, there is a possibility that you can get an upgrade for little or even for free? To understand more about it, let's explain how it works.
The upgrade happens when the company has vacancies in the upper classes. To fill these empty seats, companies can do two things:
✅ Choose loyalty customers;
✅ Sell the upgrade for "symbolic prices".
But there are different ways to try to get a free class upgrade with the airline responsible for your flight. Take a look at out tips!
When looking for the best airfare deals, we are hardly loyal to a single airline, right? However, one way to get an upgrade is by signing up for the loyalty programs that companies offer. Our tip: sign up for all of them!
It is very unlikely to get more than one upgrade on the same flight. As a result, traveling in a group or even as a couple dramatically reduces the chances of being moved to a better class. So, whenever you’re traveling alone, especially for business, odds are you can get an upgrade.
Airlines prioritize those customers who consume their products the most. Choosing the cheapest flight tickets puts you far from the list of people likely to get the upgrade. If you want to be a potential choice, opt for tickets with prices that are not promotional.
Long holidays, seasonal dates and even weekends are the days when you’re least likely to get an airline upgrade. Day trips also have lower chances. Therefore, flights at night and on weekdays are your best bet.
These four tips we have listed are for lucky travelers or those who would like to get a perk from the airlines for little or no money at all.
But for those who initially bought the flight in a class and don’t mind spending more for a more sophisticated and comfortable trip, airlines also offer the normal upgrade.
However, keep in mind that a business class flight can cost up to three times more than an economy flight. And when we think of first class international travel, the price increases up to seven times.
Although they have been around for years, there are still lots of questions about how frequent flyer programs work. How to earn miles or points? How to redeem awards? Can I sell them? What to do when they are about to expire? So that your points do not fall on this statistic and expire, check out everything about it and don’t waste your accumulated miles anymore.
One of the most common questions we get asked is how to earn miles. Well, the answer is easier than you think. In fact, it is very likely that you have already accumulated some and don’t even know.
There are two different and simple ways to accumulate points. Let's talk about them and explain how you can start earning miles right now.
Of course, if you wish to travel with miles, nothing better than accumulating travel miles as soon as possible. And the most traditional way is to join one of the frequent flyer programs offered by the main airlines.
Mileage clubs are created by companies, which want to establish a close relationship between customers and the brand in an attempt to build loyalty. To earn points, simply shop for your airline tickets.
However, in addition to redeeming your points for airline tickets, or improving the class in which you’ll travel, you can also buy other items such as clothing, electronic products, among others.
But what program should I sign up for? In more than one? Well, if you are someone who always travels, for business or on vacation, it may be worth signing up for more than one, since you’ll usually buy from different companies.
Now, if you don’t travel a lot and simply want to pay less for airline tickets, it is worth accumulating your miles on your credit card and using them only when you know in which company you’ll buy the ticket; We will talk more about this below.
If signing up for a frequent flyer program is the most traditional way to earn points, credit card points exchange is the easiest. It’s as simple as it gets: the more you use your card, the more points you accumulate.
But be aware of your card rules, as each network has its own, especially when it comes to transferring points according to your card category: from simple to premium, for example.
Usually the points you get can range from 1 to 3 points for every (USD) dollar spent. But don't worry, there's no need to spend in dollars, this is just the currency used as a reference in scoring.
Once you have signed up for the frequent flyer programs that best fit your profile with the best benefits, it's time to consider how long your earned miles will be valid for.
As we have already told you, the waste of miles is immense, so be careful not to let it happen to you. Remember, expired miles means money wasted.
To find out when your miles are due to expire, talk directly to the frequent flyer program or bank responsible. Generally, the banks' average duration of miles lasts longer, but it is always a good idea to check.
Although it's pretty simple, many people still think that earning and redeeming miles is a struggle - which is not true. Just as we showed you how “easy” it is to collect your points, so is redeeming them or even selling them.
The easiest way is when the points you earned are already in one of the aforementioned loyalty programs. If you want to use them to buy airline tickets, for example, simply find the desired destination on the airline's website and purchase (redeem) with your miles.
The airlines make the option available to purchase the ticket - or even a class upgrade - directly with miles, all you have to do is accumulate the required amount. Easy, right?
Earlier we said that credit card points are simpler to accumulate, as with every purchase you make, you earn points. But when we think of redeeming them, it’s quite the opposite.
The reason is: To be able to purchase an airline ticket with your airline X miles, your points must be within that airline's loyalty program. That is, if you plan to fly with GOL, the miles on your credit card must be transferred to the Smiles Club.
But don’t worry, it's nothing too complex. Our tip here is that you get organized and don't leave it to the last minute. Why? Because transferring your bank's points to the chosen loyalty program takes time, usually up to a week. So you have to think ahead.
As it may take a few days, the cheap ticket you found, for example, may end before the transfer is processed.
Our tip is: When you are thinking of buying an airline ticket, if you already have a good number of miles on your card, transfer it to the loyalty program of the airline where you’d like to make your purchase.
With the growing waste of miles, companies came up with an idea: to buy the miles of people before they expire.
In this way, those that have accumulated points, but not enough to buy tickets or those who don’t intend to travel, can sell them. With the purchase of miles, these companies can buy tickets at cheaper prices.
So, if you have no intention of using the points you’ve earned, take a look at online platforms to sell your miles before they expire.
Think of a common issue for many travelers: baggage allowance The last step before boarding and the first after landing is causing problems for airlines, who are looking to modernize processes further.
For starters, there are several rules about the subject. Created by local government and by the airlines themselves, they are different for national and international flights.
So, to avoid issues that could jeopardize your trip, we’ll now talk about how to properly dispatch your luggage.
Check out the differences between airlines, everything about carry-on and checked baggage, weight limits, volume and even some non-transportable items!
The rules change according to the country and to the airlines. But if you are thinking about traveling to our destinations within Brazil, we’ll tell you more about the local guidelines.
Since the changes made by ANAC (National civil aviation agency) in 2017, users carry-on baggage can weigh up to 10 kg - the one you can take inside the plane cabin.
However, the agency itself says that this amount may be reduced if the airlines deem it necessary, for reasons of aircraft capacity or safety of all passengers. If this happens, companies must notify their customers. Be sure to keep this in mind!
Among products that cannot be taken in carry-on luggage , the agency prohibits sharp objects, flammable, among others considered dangerous. The rule also applies to liquid products, but there are exceptions domestically.
For carry-on baggage on domestic flights , the transport of personal hygiene and medical aerosol products is allowed, provided they have up to 300 g or 300 ml each. Alcoholic beverages in containers up to 1 liter and perfumes up to 500 ml are also allowed, as long as, together, they have 5 liters or less.
Following the guidelines of ABEAR (Brazilian Airlines Association), the main Brazilian airlines have the same size limit for hand luggage ( length + width + height ):
🧳 GOL - 55 x 35 x 25 cm
🧳 LATAM - 55 x 35 x 25 cm
Measurements include pockets, wheels and straps. In addition to luggage, companies also allow the transport of other objects, such as bags, notebooks, tablets, books, among others. However, each company has its own restrictions, it is worth checking with the airline of your choice.
In addition to carry-on baggage, you can also check your luggage - you usually need to pay a fee. Also in 2017, ANAC started allowing airlines to charge for this service separately. Thus, in addition to the amount paid for the ticket, you will have to pay extra if you need to use the service. And it is the airlines themselves that decide the price charged for checked luggage. Check out the rules and values, as of 2019, charged by the main Brazilian airlines:
For GOL airlines, each checked bag is limited to 50 lbs/ 23 kg and the allowed size of up to 80 x 28 x 50 cm ( length + width + height ). If you have two or more volumes, each extra will be charged by the company as additional luggage.
Fares such as plus, max (domestic flights only) and premium economy (international flights only) have the benefit of free checked baggage, which is included in the ticket. The promo and light fares charge separately for checked luggage.
For these two fares, the prices of the first baggage are 60 BRL ($ 15 USD) through the company's website or 120 BRL ($ 30 USD) at the airport. For the second luggage, or additional luggage, it goes up to 100 BRL ($ 25 USD) or 140 BRL ($ 35 USD) on domestic flights and 115 BRL ($ 28 USD) and 230 BRL ($ 25 USD) on international flights. Prices from October 2019.
For LATAM airlines, there’s the same weight allowance: 50 lbs/ 23 kg maximum. Regarding size, it allows the linear dimension: 158 cm/62 in (width + height + length).
On fares, the company has a different system. On all domestic or international flights within South America, the plus and top fares are free of charge for checked bags. For those traveling on promo or light fares, there is an extra charge.
The company does not inform the specific fees, so our tip is to research it when buying your ticket.
The baggage allowance for Azul airlines is also the same: 50 lbs/23 kg. As for the size, dimensions of up to 80 x 28 x 50 cm ( length + width + height ) are allowed.
The company has fewer airfare options: economy and business (Azul and Mais Azul). For the first checked baggage, the first bag will cost 60 BRL ($ 15 USD) on the website and 120 BRL ($ 30 USD) directly at the airport, while the business (Mais Azul) fare will charge you no additional cost.
For the second baggage, the values are the same in both fares: 100 BRL ($ 25 USD) in digital channels and 140 BRL ($ 35 USD) at the airport. These prices are valid only for domestic flights and were checked in October 2019.
If you want to learn more about the costs of checked luggage in destinations in South America, the United States or Europe, go to the company's website .
As you know, unforeseen circumstances may occur, and unfortunately, occurrences of delayed, damaged or lost luggage may happen to anyone. If any of these problems occur, learn what to do.
In case of loss, immediately contact the airline responsible for your flight, preferably still at the airport right after you’ve landed.
When making a claim at the airline desk, show the receipt as proof you checked your luggage. If the airline finds your belongings, they will be returned to the address you provided.
The deadline, in Brazil, to get a response from airlines about the loss of your luggage is 7 days for domestic flights and 21 days for international flights. If your luggage is not located after this period, the company must indemnify you within 7 days.
If you notice that your bag has been tampered with or that your luggage is still damaged, immediately go to the airline counter to report it. If you only notice it when you get home, make send a written message within 7 days of receiving your luggage.
According to the Brazilian Civil Aviation Agency, According (ANAC), in cases of damaged luggage, the company is responsible for repairing the damage or even replacing it with an equivalent to the damaged one. In case your luggage has been violated, if proven, the company is responsible for indemnifying the customer.
One of the last details before boarding: the check-in. That time when you make sure to arrive two or more hours in advance at the airport so that nothing goes wrong, right? Wrong!
We live in digital times nowadays, and technology has come to help us, so we should take advantage of it. This topic will talk about the advantages of using the online check-in.
I imagine that waiting on queues isn't one of your hobbies, arriving too many hours in advance for the flight isn't either. So, to no longer have to stand in lines, online check-in is a great alternative.
Despite not being as popular as it deserves, the web check-in, as it is also known, is ideal for you to avoid unforeseen events.
Imagine missing your flight for only a few minutes because you were stuck in traffic, took too long to check out from your hotel, or had a transportation issue, and other factors that may keep you from arriving on time to check in at the airport? How annoying would that be?
So if you want to save time - and money - at the time of travel, start checking in online right now.
It’s as simple as it gets. As a way to encourage customers to check in online, airlines usually add a specific button to check in online. Here's the walkthrough of what you need to do:
☑️ Access the airline's website and click on check-in;
☑️ Enter your personal information, flight reservation code, departure and arrival city;
☑️ Other information such as phone number and your email.
Soon you will have access to your boarding pass , which will be available via the app or on your email. If you prefer, print or show it directly from your phone and that’s it.
Keep in mind that not all companies have an online check-in service available, so check in advance. Some, despite the entire process being done on the web, ask for customers to go to the ticket counter to print the online ticket.
Finally, most airlines open the online check in up to 72 hours before departure. Even so, the time will save is totally worth it!
Family travel is amazing, without a doubt. But when travelling with children, we need to pay attention to every possible detail.
Our little ones have some restrictions and advantages when it comes to airline tickets, see what they are:
A very common question is: do children pay for airline tickets ? In general in the first two years of life, most airlines do not charge for the flight of lap children.
But they also do not offer any kind of extra service, that is, for boarding without paying, children will have to stay the entire trip in their parents lap and will not be entitled to a baby car seat, for example.
Therefore, it is ideal that you choose nonstop tickets to make travel less tiring and preferably, at night when they are tired and tend to sleep during the flight.
Airlines start charging for the ticket of children over 2, but they always offer discounts on their flights. There is no standard, but the value reduction can vary from 10 to 40% off the regular price.
Bear in mind that the discount on tickets for children may not apply to promotional flights, depending on each airline rules. This refers to domestic flights. For international destinations, the rules are different and the discounts tend to be even lower.
An increasingly common question and service that companies have started offering: taking your pet in the airplane cabin.
But in order for the pet to travel with you, each airline has its own rules and limitations, make sure to check them before purchasing your airline ticket.
At Azul, for example, only one pet can be carried in the cabin, and the limit is three (dogs and cats only) - per flight.
In order to travel, they must be up-to-date with their vaccination and be allowed by a vet to travel, and always remain in a transport box within the specifications requested by the company.
As we told you at the beginning of this article, you already know that we don’t sell airline tickets. As detailed in this guide, pricing is based on different factors, including time, airline, payment method, and especially, demand. When associating these preferences to a vacation package, these preferences may no longer be met.
Therefore, we are a travel agency whose challenge is to promote ecotourism. To do this, we offer tour packages to three amazing destinations in Brazil : Bonito, Serra Gaucha and Fernando de Noronha.
Plan to travel to one of our destinations and fall in love with the incredible beauty of each place. To help you, learn how to plan cheap travel itineraries with us.
With all of this information, hopefully it will be a lot easier to plan and find the best flights for your next trip!
To make the most of the destinations we offer, count on our tool Roteiro Fácil and make the most of each place. Have a great trip!