You used my tips on how to find a cheap plane ticket and you found yourself a deal. Congratulations! But hold on a minute before you book that trip, are you reeaaallly getting a good deal?
Is this an airport close to your house or did you follow my advice to look at a major airport that has a better selection of deals? If it is at an airport nearby, that’s amazing! Scroll to the bottom and pin this for later. If you did book at an airport that’s at a bit of a distance for you please read on because I may have some bad news about your deal.
Here are some things I want you to consider before buying a plane ticket that is not for your home airport:
How much is it going to cost to get to the airport? Think about the amount you are going to be paying in gas. Maybe you can convince a friend to take you on this little road trip, but are you going to have to help them move apartments later?
Sometimes this might even require another plane ticket. You may have found a sweet deal out of NYC but you live in Tulsa so how much is it going to cost to fly to New York. Or maybe you got a deal to Athens but your final destination is Mykonos. How much does that plane ticket cost?
If you are driving then you have to think about where you are going to be leaving your car. How much are the airport lots? Do you have a friend in the area that will let you leave the car with them? How much do you trust that friend? Beyond the airport parking that is obvious there are also some lots and hotels that will allow long term parking at a discounted rate compared to the traditional airport lots. Check out: cheapairportparking.org and gottapark.com for some options.
Some hotels will even let you leave your car if you book a night with them. Which brings up my next point. How early is your flight? If you have a 6AM international flight and you have to be at the airport at 4AM (you like to live on the edge) and you live 3 hours from the airport then you are out the door at 1AM (as established you like to live on the edge, throwing caution to the wind when it comes to traffic and minor car issues). This means you aren’t getting a lot of sleep. It might be worth it to look into getting a hotel the night before that way to you can make it without feeling rushed, get some good sleep before you are in a seat with only 29in of pitch for 8 to 13 hours. Think of it as an extra day to your holiday!
And finally the PITA* factor. Is coordinating a drive, possible flight, parking, maybe a hotel worth it to you personally? Are you still saving money? Are you pushing your sanity level? Or would it be easier to pay a bit more and fly out closer to home?
These are all things to consider when you are booking a deal that’s not from your home airport. If you get through all this and it’s worth the time and extra expenses associated with going this route then hit that buy button!
*Pain in the ass