The INSIDER Summary:
• I just booked a flight to Paris from New York City for $464 round-trip.
• I was able to get such a low fare because I set up a price alert through travel search engine KAYAK.
• A price alert will send you an email when the fare for the flight you’re looking to book has gone down.
My sister moved to France this past September and she’s been begging me to come visit her ever since.
After my initial anger that she had abandoned me for the land of cheese, bread, and pastries subsided, I decided it was time to book a flight. I figured May would be an ideal time to visit since the weather would most likely be nice, and I could build my trip around Memorial Day.
A quick search on my favourite travel search engine, KAYAK, in late December informed me that a round-trip flight flying out of JFK in NYC and into either Orly or Charles de Gaulle in Paris would cost just over $500.
For a flight to Europe, that’s pretty damn cheap.
But I figured it was still early, and that I could wait and just keep checking in hopes that the fare would drop even lower.
Fast forward to the end of January, and prices had increased to just over $600. This is when one of my co-workers suggested I set up a price alert.
All you have to do to set up an alert is enter your email, your origin, and your destination, and KAYAK will email you when fares for the flights you’re searching for have dropped (they also email when prices increase).
It was a feature I was familiar with but had never actually used, and I figured this was the perfect opportunity to give it a try.
Less than a week after I had set up the alert, I received an email from KAYAK notifying me that Icelandair was offering flights from NYC to Paris starting at $450.
I clicked the link in the email and, sure enough, there was a round-trip Icelandair flight flying from JFK to Charles de Gaulle with a stop in Reykjavik for $464.
I then found the flight on Icelandair’s website — it’s always better to book through the airline so that if there’s an issue with your flight you’re dealing directly with the airline, instead of a travel search engine — chose my seats, and booked the flight.
So next time you’re looking to get the cheapest flight possible, put yourself in the hands of technology and set up a price alert.
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