Flying to Europe can be affordable, if you can find cheap airfare.

To find low cost airfare I look far in advance, know what the airfare normally costs, and buy a good deal when I see it. Check out how to avoid budget airline fees here.

Google Flights is what I find most helpful. Being flexible with dates and city order when planning is the best way to find the cheapest flights.

To Europe:

If you don’t have set dates the flights tool is a great place to start. I always look at flying from New York and Los Angeles to Europe. We live in a town with a small airport, but have family in the bigger cities in Texas so we don’t mind driving a few hours to save a few hundred (or thousand) dollars.

 

As you can see it shows airfare for multiple dates, with the lowest price in green.

If you don’t know or care which city you are wanting to fly in or out of the explore map tool is a great option!

 

When you are done exploring different destinations, click the three lines next to “Explore map” and choose the flights button.

Around Europe:

When it comes to Ryan Air my rule is if it is under $30.00 buy immediately; above that I watch it for a while. It is amazing how low cost airfare is across Europe, if I can get from one country to another for less than $30 as an American that is insane. However, I rarely see Ryan Air flights for more than $50 so I am reluctant to buy when it is in the $30-$50 range. I will watch for a couple of months and then buy when I feel it is best.

If you know what cities you want to fly to, but aren’t certain of the order the explore destinations is great for price comparison.

How to find low cost airfare to and around Europe

 

Once you know cities, you can use the flights tool to pick the best dates.

How to find low cost airfare to and around Europe

 

When I plan trips in advance and I see that in one month low cost airfare is available and in the next month they aren’t I usually wait; unless they are under $30.00.

Check out Google Flights

OUR MOST RECENT EXPERIENCE:

We bought our tickets to LGA from DFW in the winter for a flight in May. We bought our tickets in February for our flight from LGA to DFW. Both of our one way tickets were around $90 each. Adding $180 to our $488 dollar flight from JFK to DUB. This makes our round trip cost $668. Each of our flights were direct with no changing planes or layovers. The same flight from our town to Dublin would be $1200 with two plane changes and 4 hours worth of layovers both ways.

 

35 thoughts on “How to Find Low Cost Airfare to and Around Europe.

    1. A lot of people recommend skyscanner! In my experience I check it, but when I try to buy the flights they have always been gone! So sad. I haven’t seen a lot about Google flights and thought it would be fun to share.

  1. Oh WOW! The layout to this is easier to compare prices and like others have commented I do usually check on Skyscanner, but never actually THROUGH SS. Do you find the prices to remain the same on Google Flights? Unlike SS where till you press OK and prices keep increasing lol!
    Oh thanks so much for sharing, I’ve heard about GF, but never gave it a thought!

    1. They do stay the same! Also, if you want to track a flight you can do that too and they send it to your inbox if a flight increases or decreases. I’ve never had much luck with SS.

  2. Such great tips. I always try and look at multiple locations and dates, but it can be hard with a full time job. But will definitely use some of these tips!! Thanks!!

  3. I’m another Skyscanner fan (for their “Anywhere” option) and I use the Hopper app if I have a specific destination and time frame in mind. I only recently considered Google and will use it in the future for flight shopping.

    1. If I don’t care where I’m going I’ll start with SS to find what destination is cheapest, then book and investigate more with Google Flights

  4. I use Skyscanner quite a bit but I have heard good things about Google. I find even going incognito the prices seem to go up the more I look lately. I really need to book right away when I see a good fare.

  5. Really helpful tips! I definitely want to try this when I book flights again. Let’s say you’re watching flights to X place. They aren’t at your ‘ideal’ price, so you wait a bit and check on it occasionally; how often do you check on it? Once a week? Twice a week? Thanks!

    1. I set up a tracker through Google Flights and they email me when there’s a price change! I also honestly check weekly on top of that.

  6. I had no idea Google Flights was a thing! Thank you for such an informative post, definitely gonna suss this out when I’m booking my flights to Thailand in a couple months!

  7. I’m afraid I’m a Skyscanner advocate too! I guess it helps that I’m a lot more familiar with the site than Google Flights, so I know my way around it a lot better. But I’m UK-based so maybe Google Flights is a better option if you’re from the US, as I’ve heard a lot of other Americans singing its praises too. But hey, it’s whatever works for you, isn’t it? Finding cheap flights is the most important thing 🙂

  8. Great tips, I never really thought about what the price brackets were for Ryan Air flights so I think maybe now I will keep a closer eye out for good deals. I live in Nottingham, UK and they fly from my local airport so I really should pay more attention!!

    1. I WISH I lived in Europe! Flights are incredibly cheap through budget airlines there. Thanks for reading!

  9. I love Google Flights! Have set up some alerts si I know when the price changes 😊 Great job on your Dublin bookings👍

    1. Thanks! I love when I feel like I cheat the system and get a better deal connecting my own flights. It can be a bigger hassle though.

  10. I wish I could find flights for under £30 around Europe. I live in London and I’m a teacher so the only times I can go away are in the school holidays. If I want to go to Europe I’d be looking at around £80 and if I plan to visit another continent I’d be looking at around £1,000. I’ve never heard of google flights so I will definitely be checking that out next time 🙂

    1. I’m a teacher as well! I love having holidays to travel. In the states flights to another state roundtrip tend to begin at $300! It’s awful.

  11. What I also do when buying tickets for destinations in Europe – I never buy a return ticket, if I have set dates. I check regularly and I buy the tickets at their cheapest. For example, I might end up first buying the return ticket and a week later the outbound one. Makes a huge difference.

    1. I never do roundtrip either; usually because I’m flying to different countries.

  12. I must start using Google Flights more often. I’m a huge fan of skyscanner, cheapflights and Momondo. However, GF sounds even more accurate with options! Thanks for the great tips!

  13. I just loved your google flights idea! Thanks for sharing such useful hacks, they all are so amazing👍🏻Keep sharing your great experiences 😊

  14. I feel like flights have got more expensive since I moved in Europe, so I’d definitely agree with booking anything cheap right away! I love using Skyscanner and Kayak to help me find the cheap flights 😀

  15. Great advice – I never even knew Google Flights existed!! I always used skyscanner or hopper, will have to check it out!

  16. Brilliant advice – I had never even heard about this one. I always tend to use Skyscanner, but I find that it’s very hyped up. I don’t really think Skyscanner is that good, so I’ll definitely try this next time 🙂

  17. I’m looking to move abroad later this year and Ryanair is a BIGGGG draw of Europe for me!

    1. SAME!!! If I lived in Europe I would be taking weekend trips frequently.

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