Tips, tricks and coupons to stretch your dollars when travelling to Europe.
Europe is a must-see destination. There's no doubt about that. And great flight deals that will get you there is a hot topic.
After all, the cheaper the flight, the more money you have to spend sipping cocktails on a Mediterranean beach, shopping in Milan and cruising down the Seine, amirite?
Luckily for you, we’re sharing the tips to help you find the cheapest fares. Here are some of the best to get you to Europe for less.
Top Europe sales and coupons
Where to find cheap flights to Europe
Here, that’s where! The travel team here at finder.com.au trawls the Internet for the best airfares and brings them all to one place, so you hardly have to lift a finger to snap up a bargain. Above, we’ve included some of the hottest flights to Europe.
Alternatively, you can check direct with a few of the airlines. Here are some of the major carriers that fly to Europe:
When to go to Europe
- December-February (Winter): Expect Christmas markets, crisp days and cold nights, and snow in the north and alpine areas. This is the best time to go if you're hoping to experience snow or to go skiing. It's also one of the cheapest times to go.
- March to May (Spring): Coming out of winter, you might still get a bit of snow in northern Europe, but countries along the Mediterranean should be warm and comfortable during the day. If you're looking for a bargain, this is one of the best times to go as prices are still low and the weather is fair.
- June to August (Summer): Peak season in Europe usually comes with peak season prices. This is generally the most expensive time to go. If you're willing to fork out for fares on premium dates, you'll be treated to long days and beach-worthy weather.
- September to November (Autumn): Like Spring, Autumn tends to be a more affordable time to go to Europe. Temperatures will start to drop, but if you're in southern parts like Italy, Spain and Greece, you'll still find days with temperatures in the low to mid-20s.
How to find cheap last-minute flights to Europe
A general rule of thumb for overseas flights is the earlier you book, the cheaper the airfare. While this may be true in most cases, it doesn’t mean you can’t still grab a cheap last-minute flight to Europe.
When airlines need to sell seats they drop their prices; and as soon as we find out that prices have dropped, we’ll be sharing them here with you. Airlines like Etihad fly to various locations in Europe and are notorious for offering last-minute flights for less, while travel agents like STA Travel are also known to offer deals on flights less than a month away.
Another good way to get to Europe quickly and cheaply is by tacking a flight onto a tour booking. Contiki, Intrepid Travel and G Adventures all have last-minute departure deals to fill up unbooked spaces on their European tours and may offer flight discounts as an incentive.
Tips and tricks to finding cheap flights
- Be flexible. Once you see a heavily discounted fare to Europe, jump on it, no matter where in Europe the flight might take you. Thanks to budget carriers like Ryanair and Easyjet, once you’re in Europe, travel is cheap. It might just cost you $50 with a budget carrier to get you to the city you’d like to visit from where the sale fare takes you, while booking a ticket from Australia to your final destination could easily cost hundreds more. Plus, you might just fall in love with your bonus city!
- Consider the pros of a longer stopover. If you’re just after a cheap fare, an overnight or hours-long layover along the way could be worth saving a few hundred dollars on your fare. Longer stopovers in destinations where you can leave the airport may also be welcome. A wander around a new city for a few hours could be a nice break between two very long flights.
- Shop around: Sounds obvious, but it pays to shop around. One of the easiest ways to find cheap flights is to use a comparison booking engine like I Want That Flight, BYOJet, Wotif or CheapOAir. They compare flight prices across various airlines and travel agents and hook you up with the lowest price.
- Book a package: Package holidays can sometimes be cheaper than purchasing flights and accommodation separately. They can also save you heaps of browsing time. Flight Centre has one of the widest selection of European tours and packages online.
- Watch out for credit card fees: Many payment systems charge extra for you to pay with a credit card. Check carefully before you buy to see what fee-free options are available, such as direct debit and PayPal.
- Use those price match guarantees: Travel agents such as Flight Centre, Expedia, Helloworld and CheapOAir offer price match guarantees. If you find the same flight cheaper elsewhere, contact them to see what they can do.