You Can Afford a Summer Flight

You may have read some of the depressing media stories about new fees but, cheer up. We show you how to turn it around and actually save money.

LISTEN: Rick loves saving money.

Affordable Summer Flights

Four ways to cut costs on your summer vacation travels.

1. Don’t pay the new fees

Bag fees: Frontier Airlines is raising the price of some of its baggage fees in May. What’s many may not know is Frontier, Allegiant and Spirit charge for all bags, checked-luggage and carry-ons.

How to save: Frontier, Allegiant and Spirit allow a free carry-on – but only if it fits under the seat in front of you – and yes, it is possible to do this. Packing tips in the Spirit video below.

2. Don’t travel to expensive destinations

Click the city name and we’ll help you find flights to these cheap destinations.

In the U.S.

Dallas: The airfare war over this Texas city began when Southwest was freed from the restrictions of the Wright Amendment and bargain fares remain to this day. When you visit, check out attractions such as the Cowboys’ billion dollar stadium, especially the view from the Geo-Deck at Reunion Tower; visit pioneer homes at the Heritage Village; shop luxury boutiques at the art-filled NorthPark Center; and don’t forget to chow down on delicious Tex-Mex cuisine.

Other cheap cities: Boston, Denver, Los Angeles (to name a few).

In Europe

Dublin: Perennially cheap, and forever beautiful. Plus it’s a great gateway city to fly to other European cities on low cost carriers, but watch out since many discounters have lots of fees.

Scandinavia: Thanks to aggressive pricing by Norwegian Air Shuttle, cities like Oslo, Copenhagen and Stockholm are cheaper than they’ve been in decades – maybe ever.

Paris: We won’t say it’s cheap exactly but of the big three (London, Paris, Rome) it’s the cheapest this year. But as always, prices can and do change so be sure to compare fares to get the best deal.

3. Don’t throw away your money

Last year, the TSA collected more than $600,000 in airports around the U.S. but this was no tax – this was your money that you voluntarily left at security checkpoints! Sure, it’s only the loose change from emptied pockets by passengers going through screening but those nickels, dimes and quarters add up. Pick up your change and use it to buy a nice glass of wine to toast the start of your vacation.

4. Always compare airfare prices

Airfare analyst, FareCompare CEO and all-around smart guy Rick Seaney loves to hammer this tip home and his reasoning is  simple and unassailable: “If you don’t compare fares, you could pay too much.”

VIDEO: How to pack a little bag.


Updated: April 22, 2015