Ask Kurt: “What is the latest, greatest way to find the best airfare?”

I got a question from Debbie S., an adorable gal asking about new ways to save on shopping for airfare since she was mostly using Expedia and Orbitz to check for the best fares.

 The single best source for getting cheap airfares that I am using was purchased by Google and is called ITA Matrix Airfare Search.  It’s a complicated name for a site that won’t even sell you a ticket. What it will do, is show  the cheapest fares from every carrier better than any other site, and also the best flights that fit your life.

For example, I know that for me a quick trip to Hawaii even just for the weekend becomes irresistible when the fare drops really low for non-stop flights. But how would you ever find the price and time you are looking for. Right?

ITA Software Matrix Search has a feature that lets you search for a trip over the period of a month. You can define how many nights such as 2 to 3 and how many stops you are willing to make along the journey. I also make sure the “Allow airport changes” is unchecked since its not in my game plan to get in a car to continue flying from another airport just to save a few bucks.

Without fail, I always check this to make sure I’m getting the best price and options, then I whip out the credit card by using the airline’s website directly.

New-Ways-to-Land-Cheap-Airfares

GetFlyr is a mobile site and web app that have just gotten a transformation in the way their technology predicts whether you should wait or buy your ticket at the time you are poking around online for a trip.

The new predictive algorithm works for most city pairs and is shockingly accurate in forecasting whether an airline is likely to lower the fare before you travel or if you should grab the best deal sitting right in front of you.

The winning feature is the FareBeacon allowing you to get a notification when future flights you set start selling at a price within your wallet’s comfort zone. I’m impressed with the leadership at this San Francisco startup and think they’ve got something of great value for the traveler.

Correction:  In an earlier version of this story, GetFlyr was incorrectly described as being located in New York where instead it is correctly based in San Francisco.

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