What are your favorite travel hacking tools?


(Thomas K. Running) #1

What are your favorite tools to help finding better and/or more affordable ways of getting from point A to point B? Both for flight booking and other types of travel… :thinking:

Some long-term personal favorites include ITA Matrix (although less powerful than it used to be) and Flystein. Any other ones?

(RG) #2

(Øyvind Aasheim) #3

When going from A to B, you’ll often need two flights.

Typically people take flights that connect at the same airport. And sometimes at different airports in the same city.

However – if you fly into one city, take a stopover, and can continue from a different city, more flight options will be available.

Therefore, if you during your stopover use overland transport between cities, you may need fewer flights and spend less to reach your destination. I’ve often planned trips like this.

My site PanFlights facilitates this principle. When you search for one-way flights there, you may get stopover suggestions where you will travel on your own between nearby cities.

This works best with low-cost airlines, between cities that are not directly connected. And when using flexible travel days. A couple of days between flights is normal.

Here’s an example: Fly from Turku, Finland to Athens, Greece in the end of October.


When writing this, the cheapest suggestions (sort by price) include:

  • Flight Turku - Gdansk. Own travel to Warsaw, for instance with bus. Flight Warsaw - Athens. €49.
  • Flight Turku - Gdansk. Own travel to Poznan. Flight Poznan - Athens. €56.

These prices are estimates, since they include educated guesses of public transport fares between cities.

There were other stopovers options, in Budapest or Krakow. Great cities to visit as well.

(Duncan) #4

Recently, have tried https://www.skyscanner.net Good to book early. Got 4 flights from Japan, around China and back, real cheap at US$400.

(Tak) #5

For finding reasonable ticket for flight from A to B, I first check up calendar of the ticket using UA, skyscanner, Google-flight and/or spg. Usually the best price launched in 2 to 3 months before itinerary.

Using these suitable dates worth comparison of best tickets, I usually compare the results of the following flight comparison sites.
Skyscanner (28) Travelko (23, in Japanese, translate it to your favorite language. this site includes Skyscanner and so on) Tripadviser (17) Momondo(16) Google-flight(15)
*(% hit, rate de succes)
Some of competitive agents sell cheaper ticket on there own sites than above comparison sites in order to avoid charges.

You have to choose agent which has good reputation more than 4 stars. Otherwise, you will lose your money and time with bad agents.

If you failed to purchase good ticket from comparison site, good agent sometimes provides you that one, so you have a chance to ask the agent directly.

I compare ticket value with the following Vt formula:
Travel wastes your time and money gives you distance. I formulate it into Vt (value of ticket)=Distance / (Money x Time).

i.e. Money contains not only ticket, also fees of food, accommodation of connection.
Time includes total hours from start to end.

i.e. When your ticket indicates 80000km Eu1,000 8 hours, Vt= 80000/(1000 x 8) = 10
If you drive for 1 hour to and from the airport cost Eu 10, Vt= 80000/(1020 x 9) = 8.7

Avoid ticket with too short time of connection, it’s a risky choice of paying additional, especially in big airport.

Finally, you had better compare price of ticket with those site:
LCC site (I am not sure those airplanes are safe and well-maintained).

In east Agia, you sometimes find a few special discount tickets in c-trip.

In Japan, you sometimes find ticket with discount coupon (ie JPY 3000, 5000, etc) in Surprice.

If you are a member of mileage program, you had better compare your mileage program especially in off-season (ie. Milles & More of Lufthansa, UA mileage plus, etc).

If you are a member of BA avion and travel in Japan, you could use domestic flight of JAL (4500 avion for one flight).

(Duncan) #6

I’ve had success with Skyscanner.net
generally a little cheaper than Cheapoair.com Advice from Tak, above, true to try 2-3 months before flight.
A Chinese business family has recommended Spring Airlines https://en.ch.com China and around this region.
Real cheap, but sometimes hiccups, best if your Mandarin is getting better.
Going to try them next year, 'cause it’s fun roaming round China.