How to Use Google Flights to Find Cheap Flights

Google Flights

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We often refer to one of our favorite tools, Google Flights, when we highlight flight deals on ThriftyTraveler.com and on Thrifty Traveler Premium. In our opinion, it is the best tool for finding cheap airfare and booking the cheapest flight possible.

Google Flights is a pretty robust tool. In this post, we will highlight some of the best tips & tricks to book your next cheap flight.

 

How to Find Google Flights?

Start your flight search by visiting: google.com/flights/.

 

Google Flights

Visit Google Flights at www.google.com/flights

 

How to Navigate the Google Flights Homepage

The Google Flights homepage is user-friendly and provides immediate updates based on selections you may make in regards to your departure location, travel destination, dates & more.

  • The Menu: on the top left corner (three dashes), gives you shortcuts to Search Flights, Explore Map (also known as Explore Destinations) and Tracked Prices (where you can monitor flight pricing).
  • Flight Search: this is where you can enter information to start your flight search. You can provide any of the following:
    • Departure Location: You can choose up to five locations
    • Destination Location: You can choose up to five locations
    • Dates of Travel
    • Type of Trip: Roundtrip, One Way, Multi-City
    • Numbers of Passengers:  Adults, children, infants in seats and infants in laps
    • Airline Class:  Economy, Premium Economy, Business Class & First Class. Note that there is not a “Basic Economy” filter at this time. However, you can use this hack to remove most Basic Economy fares from your Google Flights search.
    • If you see a fare in the color green throughout Google Flights, know that this is showing you the lowest airfare for the dates or duration you are seeking.
  • Popular Destinations: on the bottom left, Google recommends some top destinations based on the location you are departing from.
  • Explore Destinations: (one of our favorite features) on the bottom right, gives you the ability to find other travel destinations on your travel dates. It will give you a map view with pricing to each destination.

 

Google Flights

Navigating the Google Flights Home Page

 

Filter Down to Fit Your Travel Needs

Sometimes we have preferences on our travel. Looking to take a first-class flight for your honeymoon? Only want to depart out after a certain time? Only want to fly a specific airline? Don’t worry, Google Flights has taken these things into consideration with their search functionality. Here are all of the things you are filter when searching for flights on Google Flights:

  • Overhead Bin Access: This new feature is a way to filter out most Basic Economy Fares. Basic Economy fares that allow free carry-on bags (like Delta) will still be included.
  • Stops: You can select how many stops you’re willing to make during your trip or note if you only want nonstop flights.
  • Price: You can filter the maximum price you want to pay for a flight.
  • Times: Only want to depart in the morning? Or know you must arrive by a certain time? Use this filter to identify flights that fit the range you are seeing.
  • Airlines: Whether you have airline loyalty or are looking to finally take a flight on a five-star premier airline, you can use the Airline filter to only see flights for specific airlines or alliances that you seek.
  • Flight Duration:  Have a maximum length you’re willing to be a plane? This is an important feature that will filter out fares with longer layovers.
  • Separate Tickets:  You can determine whether or not you are open to flying on separately booked tickets (for instance fly out to a destination on one airline and return on another) or note that you only want to see tickets booked on the same itinerary.

 

Google Flights

 

Let Google Flights Suggest Destinations For You

Not sure where you want to go? Know you want to travel somewhere in June but need ideas? The “Explore Destinations” feature in Google Flights is a great way to find flight deals during your dates of travel. Here are some tips on how to use “Explore Destinations” on Google Flights:

  • Enter your departure city.
  • Select the dates you’d like to travel or select flexible date guidelines. Play around with dates as pricing can greatly fluctuate.
  • Move the map around to see new destinations and prices.
  • Once you find a destination that you’d like to explore further, click the name of the city, then “View Flights” and it will populate the Google Flights search information with flight options and additional details.
  • If you see a fare in the color green throughout Google Flights, know that this is showing you the lowest airfare for the dates or duration you are seeking.

 

Google Flights

Here is a preview of how to use Google Flights’ “Explore Destinations” Feature to Find a Flight Deal

 

Use Google Flights to Book a Flight Featured on Thrifty Traveler Premium

Here is a preview of how you can you Google Flights when taking advantage of a Thrifty Traveler Premium deal.

Thrifty Tip: Don’t have Premium yet? Learn more about How Thrifty Traveler Premium Works.

 

Google Flights

Using Thrifty Traveler Premium with Google Flights

 

Bottom Line

Google Flights is a free tool that you should be taking advantage of when booking your next trip. We search thousands of flights every day and Google Flights is our most robust tool to find amazingly cheap fares. It’s leaps and bounds better than any other flight searching tool and it’s the key ingredient in what makes Thrifty Traveler Premium such a powerful and easy to use service.

 

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