Flying domestic?

I have been travelling (and hence flying) since ages but I still make mistakes when it comes to buying air tickets. Being a traveler I don’t mind a different route but I generally try to stick to the airline which gives me an affordable ticket.
In the hustle & bustle of life, I start comparing tickets of different airlines, different combinations and after some time I give up. Not to mention, most of the times I end up paying much more than what should have been an ideal price.

Mumbai from above @lemonicks.com

That’s aerial view of Mumbai

Flying international is a different experience. One has to clear many hurdles such as Passport, visa, customs, immigration etc and it is a known fact that flying domestic is much easier.

Really?
Sometimes they become equally painful or expensive if you do not pay attention to a few pointers.
Here I give you some simple tips to remember for booking tickets for domestic flights in India.

1) Try to plan your journey in advance. When you plan to travel by train, don’t you book tickets months in advance for a reservation? Do the same for your air travel. There are many airlines which have started catering to tier-2 & tier 3 cities in India. So it is not necessary to break your head on getting train reservations. If possible, chalk out a complete itinerary. Booking the tickets for onward and/or return journey together will save you money since buying two separate tickets will always cost you more.
You’ll save huge amount in buying air tickets in the last minute deals.

2) Try a different combination. As I mentioned, I don’t mind a slightly longer route if I am able to save substantial amount on my tickets. Do a comprehensive analysis of the lowest air fares available on different routes and airlines and select the best.

3) Go for a little odd time. Air India, which, being an international airline has slightly odd time for domestic flyers but saves them around 25% on ticket fare. For this reason many times people including me opt for it. 🙂

4) Try international route. In continuation with the above point, explore international routes. Sometimes seats in domestic sector of an international flight are available at an discount. Also, you’ll find that Chennai-Dubai which goes via Delhi is often cheaper than Chennai-Delhi. 😛

5) Credit card. I am including a point suggested by a reader. Many times using a particular credit card can get you some cash back or EMI options.

Indigo and Spicejet are two more low cost airlines. There is another low-cost airline called Air India Express which is a subsidiary of Air India. This airline mainly operates from Kerala & Tamilnadu to many cities in India and abroad, mostly to Middle East countries. Its main objective is to provide budget travel services. As far as I know it has no other class than the economy class.
So, if you pay attention to these pointers, you are definitely going to save money.

Do you have any more tips? I’ll include them here if they are fresh & apt.

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14 thoughts on “Flying domestic?

  1. Also explore taking international route.. Chennai-Dubai is often cheaper than Chennai-Delhi…

    I am waiting for a day when Chennai-Dubai-Delhi will become cheaper than flying Chennai-Delhi direct,,,

  2. All your points are very valid 🙂

    One more point people can bear in mind is , many times using a particular credit card can get you some cash back or emi options.

  3. Thanks for all your points. The fourth one is very good. From the next time surely i’ll check for international route.

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