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Kip Tips

Insider Tips: Get the Best and Cheapest Seats on Your Next Flight

Before purchasing your tickets, make sure you're getting the most bang for your buck.

For its Insider Tips From the Pros packages in the February 2014 and May 2014 issues, Kiplinger’s spoke with dozens of experts in fields ranging from college aid to travel to glean insights they apply to their own financial lives and share with their own family and friends. Rick Seaney, co-founder and CEO of FareCompare.com, revealed some practical and valuable travel tips worth sharing separately with Kip Tips readers here:

How to get a good seat on a plane

If you have elite status, it’s much easier to get a good seat. You could also wait until you get to the check-in kiosk to see whether better seats are available. Or check in 23 hours, 59 minutes and 59 seconds before your flight to see what’s available. That’s when the airline might free up seats that it was holding. Flying on days that are less busy, such as Tuesday, Wednesday or Saturday, always helps. Plus, they are typically the cheapest days to fly.

The best way to save when buying multiple airline tickets

Airline reservations systems typically charge everyone in your party the same higher price—even if there are a few lower-priced seats that could be purchased by a portion of your group. Because of this glitch, you should shop for airline tickets for one passenger at a time in order to save on trips with two or more passengers on the same itinerary. I’ve done this several times. Once, on a trip to London, we had to buy four tickets. When we bought them separately instead of as a single purchase, we saved more than $1,000 because three were available at a lower price.

Slash your costs even more with our collection of 26 secrets to save on travel.