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6 ways to fly cheap during spring or summer break

Places like Miami, Cancun and Punta Cana and their beaches are the ideal spots if you are planning for some sun-soaked revelry. Source: Shutterstock

Spring break season is here. This is the time of the year where millions of college students avenge all the hours spent in the library – by partying all-day long, all-week long.

Places like Miami, Cancun and Punta Cana and their beaches are the ideal spots if you are planning for some sun-soaked revelry.  For those who want a more chill vibe, heading home (that’s you, international students) or the great outdoors sound really appealing.

A giant inflatable pool in the middle of the sea wouldn’t hurt either.

Basically, you just want to get out of your dorm, and leave college and your assignments behind for a bit.

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But how do you get out there without dipping into your savings, taking out a mini loan from the bank or (if applicable) extremely benevolent parents?

With a little help from Sun Sentinel, here are six tips to help you score the cheapest airfares for that spring/summer break you want and need:

1. Book much, much earlier

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“We normally see airfares rise during spring break, slip lower in April and May, then shoot back up in the summer,” said Vicky Evans, of Travel Sales Development for the Tampa-based auto club group, AAA, in a news release.

While it may be too late to book that ticket for spring break, start planning for summer break now and book them right after spring break. Prices are lower in between peak travel periods, such as spring (February-April) and summer (Memorial Day and Labour Day).

2. Go incognito in the wee hours 

Get in front of airlines’ websites in incognito mode between midnight and 5 am on Mondays and Tuesdays. According to AAA, airlines release unpaid bookings after midnight which increases your chance to find seats. You can also clear your cache instead of going incognito so that your previous browsing history do not work against you in securing cheap seats. This tip is not fool-proof, but it won’t hurt to try!

3. Fly early and mid-week

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Book flights that depart early in the morning or late at night on Tuesdays and Wednesdays to save the most. These are the times and days most travelers shun, so airlines drop prices on these slots to fill up their planes.

4. Cross-check multiple search engines and websites

Bookmark and use these pages – Google.com/Flights, JetRadar.com, SkyScanner.com and AirFareWatchdog.com – to help you narrow down your search.

5. Sign up for price alerts

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Capitalise on the email alerts and newsletters airlines love to blast out to be the first to nab those promotional seats. Even better, budget carriers such as Spirit.com, JetBlue.com, Allegiantair.com, FlyFrontier.com and Southwest.com have deals they will gladly send to your inbox, too.

6. Don’t stop believing

If you think the fare you scored was the lowest, think again. There is always the possibility it can get even lower than that. So reserve that flight you think is the cheapest and just cancel it within 24 hours after making a payment without a penalty. Keep searching in the meantime!

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