Travelling abroad with children is challenging enough, given all the logistics and extra care and attention that has to be given long the way. Depending on their age, the cost can also add to your stress levels so it’s always helpful if you can find a way to reduce the cost.
We’ve put together a number of ways of how to travel with kids and pay less, which will hopefully help you save some money.
Book airplane tickets early
According to a study carried out by CheapAir.com, on average, the best time to book your tickets is 54 days before departure. According to data compiled from 4,191,533 flights this is the time when tickets ought to be at their cheapest. Once you child reaches the age of 2-years-old that’s when you have to start paying for child seats – and it quickly gets expensive! The study also said when planning for your summer holiday book during the final week of April to enjoy some healthy discounts.
Spread the costs over time
If you feel the child ticket is too expensive, you might consider taking out a short term loan to pay upfront. This allows you to get the ticket(s) you need without putting yourself out of pocket. It also means you can pay back the loan over a fixed period, so you can plan ahead and budget, without being forced to pay over the odds for a child ticket in one lump sum.
Ask for child discounts
One thing you won’t see advertised by airlines are discounts for children – but there may be some available if you ask. Much will depend on the airline, where you are flying to and the type of tickets you have booked. You may be able to trigger the discounts when searching and booking online, but if not, you’ve got nothing to lose by picking up the phone and giving them a call. Even if it’s as little as 10%, every penny counts.
Use the right search engine
Almost by default most people use Google or Safari to search online. However, using the right search engine could help you find a much cheaper flight for your kids. Google Flights is the best place to start as it can find some really great deals you won’t find elsewhere. Once you’ve found one, head over to Momondo to run the same dates to see if you can find it even cheaper. Finally, run them through Skiplagged to make sure you are getting the absolute best value possible.
Choose the right seating
Where you want to sit on an airplane is often dictated by price. Of course, you don’t want your children spread out across the plane, for obvious reasons. However, you will also pay more for booking a row of seats together. A cheaper way around this is to book in blocks of two or three in different aisles. That way family members are kept together and you should also be able to save some money.
Travel as lightly as possible
Baggage allowance varies from airline to airline. Most do offer a carry on piece for essentials, which will be needed for younger kids and babies. Allowances for children are sometimes different to adults. There are even some airlines that do have any weight limits at all for cabin luggage. Be aware of the baggage limits for the airline you are travelling on so you can pack appropriately. If not, the charges can quickly add up. For example, British Airways currently charge from £36 to £65 per additional bag, depending on the travel class and route.