Get Ready for Takeoff: How To Use Skyscanner for Holiday Flights

Tourist Woman on plane

Seeing the world doesn’t have to cost as much as you might think. Learning how to use Skyscanner is straightforward, and through the company’s app and website, you can find cheap flights all over the globe.

The price of travel is rising — especially for flights — but Skyscanner uses helpful tools like its Savings Generator to analyze pricing data for travelers. The company scans over 10 billion prices per day, then uses that data to find affordable options.

It’s a means to save money if you already have a trip planned, but it’s also an insightful resource if you need a little travel inspiration. With Skyscanner, you can find inexpensive flights to unique locales you might not have considered visiting.

Skyscanner’s number one travel tip is to start looking for flights early. So, if you want to travel this holiday, set up alerts now for large savings.

What Is Skyscanner?

Skyscanner is a metasearch engine and booking tool that helps you get the best rates on flights, hotels, and car rentals. Using comprehensive search and data analysis, Skyscanner works with over 1300 suppliers to find low rates that may otherwise get missed.

The company isn’t a travel agency, though — it’s an aggregator. Once you find the lowest price flight, you book directly through the provider with no added fees from Skyscanner. So, Skyscanner simply shows you all your options, making them an unbiased source of information.

Why Use Skyscanner?

Voted the number one airfare search site by Frommer’s (one of the most trusted names in travel), Skyscanner makes bookings much more affordable by compiling all of your flight and travel choices. With everything in one place, you compare your options and select what works best. No more scouring the internet for deals before a trip.

It doesn’t matter where you want to travel, either, as Skyscanner is used in 52 countries and more than 30 different languages.

You can even use Skyscanner in the middle of your adventures. Let’s say your return flight is canceled, and you need to find something fast. With Skyscanner’s app, you can quickly search and compare flight options on the go.

Everywhere Search Tool

Skyscanner also offers several features that make navigating your options much easier. If you have a week off work or school and know you want to travel somewhere but aren’t sure where, use their Everywhere Search tool. It considers your location and when you want to fly to find the cheapest flights to destinations across the globe. How cool is that?

Whole Month Search Feature

If you know where you want to go, but are flexible with dates, try their Whole Month Search feature. It allows you to compare travel dates across an entire month to find the cheapest time to make plans.

Multi-City Searches

Multi-city searches are possible with Skyscanner too. If you want to tour Europe, see all of Asia, or hop up and down South America‘s coast, Skyscanner can help. With the Multi-city search feature, you can add up to six legs to your journey with one search.

Skyscanner provides all of these tools for free. They don’t charge to download the app nor tack on surprise fees or taxes to your bookings.

How To Use Skyscanner

With either the desktop or app, you can search for your preferred travel dates and locations. If you’re flexible about your dates, use the “Whole Month” option. Or, if you have several destinations in mind, opt for the “Everywhere Search” tool.

You can also add-in search preferences. If you want to include nearby airports, one-way tickets, or need a non-stop flight, simply check the appropriate box by the search bar.

After entering your travel details, Skyscanner prompts you to create an alert. The site will ask for your email and contact details to send fare updates. Anytime a flight price goes up or down, you’ll get an email or push notification — ensuring you get the best deal.

Pro Tips for Finding the Best Flight Prices

Laura Lindsay, Skyscanner’s Global Travel Trends Expert, told The Happiness Function in an interview, “The recommendation is to book 30 weeks ahead of your desired departure date to get the best price. Airfares are tied to supply and demand, so often the longer you wait to book, the more expensive the ticket.”

Lindsay also stated travelers should consider setting up multiple price alerts. By picking several airports and being flexible with dates, you can find better rates.

Consider mixing and matching flights too. You might save significantly if you’re willing to fly with a different airline for each leg of your journey.

If you’re traveling with friends and loved ones, get everyone to sign up for price alerts. Even if you’re flying solo, ask a friend or family member if they’ll still help keep an eye on fluctuations.

Finally, Lindsay pointed out that Tuesdays and Saturdays are usually the best days to book flights. However, as she put it, “the general rule doesn’t always apply. Price is driven by supply and demand and is dynamic. So, if a route is really well served (lots of flights, seats) then it is generally cheaper. As the flights and seats become less scarce, the prices change.”

Given that, if Skyscanner sends a price drop alert on a Thursday, don’t feel like you have to wait until Saturday to book it. For even better savings, travelers can use their Savings Generator. The feature is in beta but might reveal more favorable deals than a manual search.

Make Exploring the World More Affordable With Skyscanner

Skyscanner is a free tool that every world traveler should be familiar with. Given how volatile flight prices are, catching them at the low end of their price range makes a huge difference. Skyscanner offers tools to help you do that.

Once travelers know how to use Skyscanner, it becomes easier to find affordable summer flights. Set up a few alerts, try to be flexible with dates or airports, and you’ll be well on your way to a budget-friendly summer vacation. Go ahead, head to Hawaii or visit one of America’s top national parks for that next adventure!

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Ashlee Fechino

Ashlee Fechino is an outdoor recreation and travel writer sharing the best-kept secrets that aren’t in your typical guidebook. Her goal is to inspire people to travel with a sense of adventure by sharing hidden gems across the U.S. and beyond. She is married to an expat Argentine, Pablo. They camp in their Aliner often and love wandering the world. Follow their latest adventures on Instagram @thehappinessfxn.