Right now, the travel search world is experiencing both the best of times and the worst of times! Search options are endless and with so much choice, there surely is a great deal just waiting for you to find. Unfortunately, finding that deal can take many hours and the options presented are often biased depending which search site you choose and how they make their profit. The time you invest in the search can offset the dollar savings you find. So we decided to cut through the travel search maze to both simplify the flight search and to find the best flight deals – in just six steps.
Travel Search Background
First, it’s key to understand the travel search landscape and who owns who. Knowing this helps reduce the number of sites you search. Through research, we’ve learned that many travel sites and apps are owned by two mega companies – Expedia Group and Booking Holdings – so the common searches we use, often quote prices from their mega search owner.
It’s also important to know that search providers earn their revenue from referral fees and advertising. The results you see when searching on any one site can be biased with advertised “hot deals” displayed at the top. To find the best choices and best flight deals, it’s essential to check multiple sites.
Enter Opptee Travel Search
The fastest and most complete way to search a wide variety of aggregators and airlines is Opptee(TM) Travel Search. Opptee is an impartial app that includes access to all the top mega searches and direct suppliers. Opptee accesses sites that YOU choose based on YOUR preferences.
Six Steps to Best Flight Deals
Following these six steps will help ensure a thorough AND fast flight search
1. Download Opptee Travel Search onto your phone, tablet or computer
2. Start by searching several aggregators so you get an overview of your options and which airlines fly to your destination.
From Opptee, select the Flights icon and input your departure/arrival airports and travel dates. Choose a variety of aggregator sites preferably one from each of the mega-search owners, so Expedia and Skyscanner are good options. Then choose Google Flights and maybe FlightHub. After you select a provider, click “+ Add Site” to add another search option. Be sure to check the date/price calendars offered on some sites. Sometimes altering the date by a day or two, can help with pricing, and traveling on a Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday helps too.
Notes: Opptee remembers your search criteria so you only input it once and the information cascades down to all providers you choose. Opptee also remembers your most recently selected airlines, showing them at the top of the list for next time you search (see side image). And, don’t search only aggregators you know; the best flight deals may be with search providers you haven’t tried before.
3. Once you have an idea of the prices and schedules, search the airline sites directly. Also, search Southwest Air as it does not show up in aggregator listings. Neither do most of the budget airlines like Allegiant, Jet Blue, Air Transat, Ryan Air, and Iceland Air. However, budget airlines ARE listed in Opptee so seeing them in the list, reminds you to search them too.
4. Decide on a few (two or three) favorite flight options; maybe ones where you’re a loyalty member.
5. Set Price Alerts on your shortlist of flights. Some sites offer price alerts, but even if they don’t, Opptee does. Just Click on the price notification (bell) icon in the upper right corner, select ‘+’ sign and ‘ok’.
Be patient and wait a few days/weeks to receive updates from the price alerts. The further out your flight dates, the better chance you’ll see a price drop.
6. You can book when you’re ready, knowing you’ve found the deal and itinerary best for you. Using Opptee, your reservation is made directly with the provider you chose. No need to set up another account. If you collect loyalty points with the provider you booked with, you will also receive those points.
Notes: Opptee saves your search history so you can return to it later. To use the History feature, select the circle icon in the upper left corner. Previous searches are shown as a list.
It’s also this easy to complete the same steps for your hotel, car rental, and cruise searches.
Congratulations, you’ve done it! Found the best itinerary and price for you – and accomplished it all from within one app.