HOUSTON – After more than a year of being cooped up and quarantined, travel is making a comeback. But if you have checked airfare prices lately, you probably noticed prices are higher than they were pre-pandemic.
If you are just itching to get in the air, try these three tricks to save some money.
Buy Spirit Airline tickets at the airport, instead of online
If you’re booking with Spirit Airlines, buying your tickets at the airport ticket counter, instead of on online, means you won’t have to pay the Passenger Usage Fee.
Travel agent Janet Acosta says you can buy them in advance and you won’t even have to pay for parking if you do a little planning.
“If you’re in and out within an hour, which is usually the case, you’re not gonna pay for any parking,” Acosta explained. “Or you know, if you’re with a family member, they can just kind of drive around and wait for you to go into the ticket counter.”
Acosta saved about $50 per ticket for her family of four on a trip in February. The total savings was $200.
Check the Hopper app
The Hopper app tracks flight prices for you and estimates what the trends are looking like.
I checked flights from Houston to LA on the app. The Hopper brings up fares for a few months out and shows you which days are cheapest to fly.
Then it watches the airfare to alert you if and when the price goes down.
“So whenever I get those alerts is when I go to the airlines’ website to check the prices; and then I make the purchase at that time,” Acosta said.
Check Southwest Flights from IAH and Hobby
If you fly Southwest Airlines, don’t forget the airline now flies out of Bush Intercontinental Airport. Acosta says for some reason those flights have been less expensive than flying out of Hobby.
“When we looked at Hobby, it was almost $100 more per person than flying out of Intercontinental airport for the same day, same location and same destination,” she said.