Updated December 4th, 2018.
Looking for the cheapest flights?
Without fail, we always use a flight comparison website to search for flights. Even if we’re pretty sure that we know which airline will have the cheapest flights, we never go directly to the airline’s website as flight comparison websites often have even cheaper deals. Recently, we did some research over on our sister website, South East Asia Backpacker, to find the cheapest flight comparison website on the Intenet! So… what did we discover?
The website that found us the cheapest flight was the flight comparison website, Momondo whom we’d actually never heard of before! This website has been recommended to us by many travellers and can clearly find you some of the cheapest deals around! Put it to the test and see what it finds you!
Usually, my first point of call is Skyscanner. They’ve always found me cheap deals over the years and their search engine is easy to use. For backpackers on a budget, Skyscanner is great, because they allow you to compare prices across a whole month, so if you’re flexible on time, but not budget, you can find the cheapest deals this way. They also allow you to search ‘Everywhere’ to find the cheapest flight to anywhere from wherever you are! We love this encouragement of the backpacker free spirit!
What to look for in a flight to South America?
After many years of travel, nowadays, I don’t always go for the very cheapest flight that I can find. Through experience, I’ve learnt that compromising on my precious sleep and comfort in order to save a few dollars, just isn’t always worth it. First of all, I look at the price of the flight and then, I consider the following factors:
1. Duration of the flight and layovers in airports – Who wants to wait 14 hours in the airport in Sao Paulo just to save a measly 20 dollars? You’ll probably spend that amount of money on expensive snacks and drinks at ranked up airport prices, just to alleviate the boredom!
2. The arrival time of the flight – If I’m arriving into a new city in South America (especially as a solo female traveller) I want to make sure that I arrive during the daylight hours. If you’ve got to catch a bus or taxi from the airport at least you can look out of the window and get familiar with your surroundings in the daylight. The whole experience feels a lot less intimidating when the sun is shining.
3. Hotel check-in times – Most hotels and hostels in South America (and all over the world) only allow you to check in at midday. If your flight arrives at 4 am, you’ll probably have to pay for your previous night at the hotel in order to be let into your room. Flights arriving in the afternoon are the best bet!