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Cheaper air tickets for summer travel: some tips

Summer travel season is right around the corner, but for a lot of travelers, one of the biggest headaches can be finding the best deals and cheapest tickets for flights.

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To avoid hefty airline prices, technology expert Kurt Knutsson suggests using the website donotpay.com/travel, which allows users to register flight tickets that have already been purchased. If the ticket prices drop, the website – which is free – will try to find a loophole to negotiate a cheaper price or rebook you without penalties.

While airlines themselves allow customers to change their tickets after purchasing them, Knutsson said doing so almost never adds up financially.

“They never like it when we circumvent the rules,” Knutsson told Dagen McDowell during an interview on FOX Business. “They’ll just make it tougher and tougher as we go along. But what critics have said about this one is that this site, if it really did catch on, would cause fares to go up.”

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Another option for travelers looking to make financially savvy purchases is to build up their points by flying frequently and then hire the Miles Guy, a travel booking expert who helps fliers use credit card points and frequent-flier miles to book the best flights.

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There is a onetime fee of $325, with a $75 surcharge per additional customer. If the Miles Guy is unable to find a flight that meets the customer’s needs, there’s no charge.

“We put him to the test,” Knutsson said. “We had a couple going on their honeymoon to Bali, booked through Delta, a coach ticket for two at a higher threshold than he ended up finding in business class [and] better routing. They were happy to pay the amount and use a lower amount of miles. They saved in the long run.”

Alternatives include Hopper, an app that provides information on when it’s cheapest to book flights, and Scott’s Cheap Flights, which searches for low-cost, international flight deals and notifies you of good deals. Use the free version instead of the paid one for the latter, Knutsson suggested.

“I think the average booking now is about 60 days out for the best deal on flights,” he said. “But it depends. The game is up in the air with that.”