Finding the best discount airline tickets requires some time spent online for price comparisons, as well as the use of a travel agent (the latter is especially true for international flights).
- Everyone knows of the usual discount internet airfare sites such as Expedia, Orbitz, and Travelocity, and while prices don't vary much between sites, they are worth a look. Two newer sites that offer price comparisons to try are Kayak and Mobissimo.
- If flying within the United States, first check prices on the websites of budget airlines such as Jetblue, Southwest, America West, and Ted. Full priced airfares on these airlines are often found to be cheaper than a discounted ticket on a major carrier, and even better when on sale.
- Sign up for email newsletters from the airlines you frequently use as oftentimes airlines will send out advance notice of fare sales to their loyal readers. Other e-newsletters to sign up for are Smarter Travel or Airfare Watch Dog, which are both catch-all travel websites with up to date listings of fare sales.
- If flying abroad, it's best to double check fares with a good old fashioned travel agent because an agent can search for tickets in the cheapest fare class. Some of the best deals can be found at agencies that specialize in tickets to a certain area, for example: a travel agency in Chinatown might be the best place to buy an airline ticket if you are heading to Asia.
- Anyone who is under the age of 26 and/or a student should first search for discounted student tickets. One of the best places to do so is STA Travel, a worldwide agency that specializes in student airfares. They often have airfare sales and a chat with one of their agents (on the phone, in their office, or an through an online search) may yield a hugely discounted ticket, especially if heading to Europe. Another useful website with listings of discounted student airfares is Smarter Travel, which compiles all current airfare sales of different airlines.
Finally, book and enjoy your trip. Some other useful flying and travel tips include how to overcome fear of flying and how to exchange currency online.