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How to Find Cheap Flights in 2023: A Step-by-Step Guide to Using Google Flights

How to Find Cheap Flights in 2023: A Step-by-Step Guide to Using Google Flights

How to Find Cheap Flights in 2023: A Step-by-Step Guide to Using Google Flights

“Unlock Insane Deals: 2023’s Cheapest Flights Exposed! Master Google Flights for Epic Savings. Your Ultimate Guide. Don’t Miss Out!

Let me first share with you a truth that few in the travel business are prepared to confess, before I go on to explain why Google Flights is my preferred airline search engine and why Going uses its sample results in almost every Going deal we send to 2 million+ customers.

There isn’t a single airline that is the cheapest to fly. And for this reason, I adore Google Flights.

I can tell you with certainty that they’re all essentially the same because I’ve spent years (years!) of my life looking through millions of fares on hundreds of airlines and flight search engines.

That’s fantastic news, not bad. It implies that regardless of the flight search engine you pick, you will still receive the same benefits. And Google Flights is the one that I’ve personally discovered to be both the simplest and most effective.

(In case there was any question, we receive no commission, payment, kickbacks, goodwill, or anything else in exchange for this advice. At Going, we are committed to inexpensive airfares. Period.)

Pros of Google Flights

Google Flights offers several advantages to users:

  1. Comprehensive Search Results: Google Flights provides a wide range of options from various airlines and travel agencies, giving you a comprehensive view of available flights.
  2. User-Friendly Interface: The interface is intuitive and easy to use, allowing users to quickly input their travel details and get relevant results.
  3. Flexible Date and Destination Searches: You can search for flights without specifying exact dates or even a destination. This is helpful if you’re flexible with your travel plans.
  4. Price Tracking: Google Flights allows you to track the prices of specific flights or routes, and it will send you notifications when prices change.
  5. Interactive Calendar: The calendar feature shows you the lowest fares for different dates, making it easy to find the most cost-effective time to travel.
  6. Filtering and Sorting Options: Users can filter and sort results based on various criteria such as price, duration, number of stops, and airline preference.
  7. Integration with Google Services: It’s integrated with other Google services, like Google Maps and Google Pay, making it easy to find directions to the airport and manage payments.
  8. Multi-City Searches: You can search for multiple destinations in a single query, making it convenient for planning complex itineraries.
  9. Explore Destinations Feature: This feature allows users to discover new destinations based on their interests, budget, and travel dates.
  10. Mobile App Accessibility: The Google Flights app is available for both Android and iOS, allowing users to search for and book flights on the go.
  11. Predictive Pricing: It offers insights into whether flight prices are likely to increase or decrease in the near future, helping users make informed decisions.
  12. No Booking Fees: Google Flights doesn’t charge any additional fees for booking flights. It redirects you to the airline or travel agency’s website for direct booking.
  13. Integration with Google Accounts: If you’re logged in with your Google Account, you can save your flight details and preferences for future searches.
  14. Real-Time Updates: Google Flights provides real-time information about flight delays, cancellations, and gate changes.
  15. International Currency Conversion: It can display prices in various currencies, which is useful for travelers from different parts of the world.
  16. Information on Baggage Fees: Google Flights often provides information about baggage fees, helping you consider the total cost of your trip.

Remember that while Google Flights offers many advantages, it’s always a good idea to cross-check prices with other flight booking platforms to ensure you’re getting the best deal.

Let me provide an example to show you how everything works together to get you a cheap flight.

Imagine you are a Philadelphian who wants to travel to Europe next summer. Typically, a flight search engine would limit your options to flights leaving from Philadelphia and landing in one particular European airport, let’s say Paris. You would need to conduct another search if you are also interested in flights to Amsterdam.

But with Google Flights, you may select six other airports that are close by as your departure locations, including three in the New York City region and three in the Washington, DC, region.

You might choose Paris, Amsterdam, and up to five other airports as your final destination. With these details, Google Flights will display the 49 potential itineraries’ least expensive airfares. (Additionally, it will show you results for the entire 12-month calendar, not just on a given date.)

The result:

We were able to save $851 thanks to Google Flights by simultaneously checking up to 7 airports (including the tiny train fare up to NYC) for departure and arrival.

Flight Result
Departing Flights

Cons of Google Flights

While Google Flights offers many advantages, there are also some potential drawbacks to consider:

  1. Limited Regional Coverage: Google Flights may not have as extensive coverage for certain regional or smaller airlines, potentially missing out on some niche routes.
  2. No Direct Booking: While Google Flights provides information and links to book flights, it doesn’t handle the booking process itself. This means you’ll be redirected to the airline or travel agency’s website to complete the transaction.
  3. Lack of Exclusive Deals: Some travel agencies and airlines may offer exclusive deals or promotions that are not listed on Google Flights. It’s worth checking directly with airlines and agencies for any special offers.
  4. Limited Customization for Complex Itineraries: While it’s possible to search for multi-city itineraries, some users may find that Google Flights lacks the advanced customization options offered by specialized travel agencies or booking platforms.
  5. No Loyalty Program Integration: Google Flights doesn’t integrate with airline loyalty programs, so you’ll need to manage your rewards separately if you’re a frequent flyer.
  6. Potential for Price Discrepancies: Prices on Google Flights may not always match those on the airline or agency’s website due to factors like currency conversion or real-time updates. It’s a good practice to double-check prices before finalizing a booking.
  7. Limited Customer Support: Since Google Flights redirects you to third-party websites for booking, if you encounter issues during the booking process, you’ll need to contact the airline or agency directly for assistance.
  8. Privacy Concerns: Some users may have privacy concerns about using a service provided by a company known for data collection. While Google has measures in place to protect user data, this can still be a consideration for some.
  9. Inability to Search for Packages or Accommodations: Google Flights primarily focuses on flights and doesn’t include options for searching for hotel accommodations or vacation packages, which may be important for some travelers.
  10. Dependence on Internet Connectivity: Since Google Flights is an online service, you need a stable internet connection to use it effectively. This may not be ideal for travelers in areas with limited connectivity.

It’s important to weigh these potential drawbacks against the benefits to determine if Google Flights is the right tool for your specific travel needs. Additionally, always exercise caution and conduct thorough research when making flight reservations.

How to use Google Flights

The main online travel firms, including Orbitz, Expedia, and Priceline, as well as nearly every airline’s website are all searched by Google Flights for prices. A Google Flights lesson can be found below.

How to configure your Google Flights departure and arrival points to obtain the most alternatives
When you get at the homepage, enter your desired departure and destination airports as well as the dates you would want to go. Here’s an illustration:

How to use Google Flights

Three things to keep in mind

How to use Google Flights’ date picker to see which day is the cheapest to fly

Click the departure date box to look for the cheapest travel dates. Doing so will display pricing for two months, with the cheapest dates highlighted in green, as follows:

Two crucial points:

After viewing the calendar of lowest prices, click on the desired dates to bring up a long list of potential flights, as seen below:

Observe how Google Flights displays a selection of what it deems to be the “Best departing flights” at the top after taking into account variables like cost and route. Even so, it could be worthwhile to check out the “Other departing flights” to identify the flights that will work best with your timetable.

On Google Flight, all flight times are displayed in local time. On a Google Flights itinerary, if you see a +1 next to the arrival time, that signifies your flight will arrive the following day (or two days later if it reads +2).

How to use Google Flights to make reservations

Select a suitable departing flight and then click on it. If you are purchasing a roundtrip fare, you will next be asked to select a comparable return flight, and your screen will appear as follows:

In the example above, all you have to do to change the departing flight is click where it reads “EWR-ORY” on the left, just above “Returning flights.”

Three quick points to remember are:

Once you click your preferred return flight, you’ll be shown your booking options, like so:

Numerous airlines provide a variety of economy ticket options. Basic economy and major economy (or terms with comparable meanings) are the two most popular. You may find out about the many benefits and limitations of various economy tickets using Google Flights, as follows:

Which carriers are available through Google Flights?

The vast majority of airlines are listed on Google Flights, including: 

Which carriers are not accessible with Google Flights?

Southwest Airlines flights in the US are the main omission. Southwest purposefully does not sell tickets through online travel companies and exclusively sells them directly through their website.

Funny enough, Google Flight does display the Southwest flight schedule but not the cost. You must visit Southwest.com to view the fare.

Frequently Asked Questions About Google Flights

Certainly! Here are some frequently asked questions about Google Flight:

1. What is Google Flights?

2. How do I use Google Flight to search for flights?

3. Can I book flights directly through Google Flight?

4. Does Google Flights charge any fees for its service?

5. Can I filter my flight search results on Google Flight?

6. Can I track the price of a specific flight on Google Flights?

7. Does Google Flights show prices in real-time?

8. Can I book multi-city or open-jaw flights on Google Flight?

9. Does Google Flights have a mobile app?

10. Can I book hotels or rental cars through Google Flight?

11. Is Google Flight available in all countries?

12. How can I contact Google Flight customer support?

Please note that the information provided is based on the state of Google Flights as of my last training data in September 2021. There may have been updates or changes after this date.

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