Europe is a premium destination for millions of travelers. You could visit the cradle of democracy in Athens or admire the Eiffel Tower from Charles De Gaulle Airport in Paris. There is no shortage of adventure, but for many, there is also no shortage of overpriced travel arrangements.
While it’s a common assumption that a trip to Europe costs a fortune, the reality isn’t so bleak. Of course, a lack of adequate planning and rushed reservations are good ways to waste your life savings.
Rather than blow your 401(k) on an adventure, use these tips and tricks to find the cheapest and best flights to Europe. And when you partner with Business Class Experts, you can take that affordable trip in comfort, flying in first or business class cabins.
Preparing for Your European Adventure
A trip to Europe has many moving parts, and you want to be as ready for anything as possible. So, before you take off, review some tips to ensure you have the best trip possible. These tips include:
- Create your itinerary and travel checklists – Checklists are an excellent way to stay organized. You can use them for pack lists, sightseeing stops, work documents, and more. Combined with an itinerary of expected events, you’ll never be in the wrong place at the wrong time.
- Coordinate your finances – If you plan on using cash, stop by a bank branch to make a currency exchange to avoid fees at the airport. However, most debit and credit cards will work internationally, but be sure to update your financial institution. Otherwise, you could have your card frozen while abroad.
- Compile documentation – Make sure your passport, hotel reservations, and other essential documents are current and somewhere easily accessible. Nothing is worse than fumbling for your ID while a line of angry travelers forms behind you.
- Pack the essentials – The pack list will obviously be different if your trip is to Reykjavik versus the south of France. But what about the differences between Milan and Rome? Research essential clothing items so you stay comfortable, and don’t forget the international phone charger!
Skipping any of these tips won’t end your trip in disaster, but it invites the possibility. Instead, the more you prepare ahead of time, the smoother your adventure to Europe will be.
How To Get the Cheapest Flights to Europe
Traveling to European destinations has the feeling of luxurious opulence. While it’s true that many destinations have a certain charm you won’t find anywhere else, the thought they are out of reach is mere fantasy. Using these five strategies will have you finding affordable international flights to destinations across the continent.
Avoid Peak Season
Travel during peak season is sometimes unavoidable, with time-sensitive deals, strict timelines, and fleeting family moments happening constantly. Yet, for most travelers, avoiding peak season is easier than expected and comes with additional benefits.
Peak travel season is typically during March for Spring Break, over the summer months of June, July, and August, and around the holidays. Let’s take a look at what a booking from New York City’s JFK Airport to London would look like during peak season.
- Average round-trip ticket from NYC (JFK) to London Heathrow, June 21 – June 25: $2,968 for business class.
Now let’s check out what the costs look like if we fly during October or outside of peak season.
- Average round-trip ticket from NYC (JFK) to London Heathrow, October 23 – October 27: $1,845 for business class.
Right off the bat, you can save more than $1,000 by traveling during the off-season. And as we mentioned, there are some additional benefits, such as the flight during peak season occurring aboard different airlines, whereas the October trip was only with Icelandair.
In addition to lower airfare, various attractions also see lower tourist volume during the off-season, allowing you to enjoy fewer crowds. Plus, if you book flights to weather-sensitive destinations, you might also receive penalty-free cancellations or re-bookings.
Browse Online Search Engines
In our example above, we found comparable flights on our favorite flight search engine—Google Flights. Google Flights is a powerful tool that allows you to browse flight prices from your home airport to destinations across Europe.
For example, let’s say you’re planning a flight from Boston but want to explore the cheapest destinations in Europe. Start by heading over to Google.com/flights and click on the map display.
This map view will give you a snapshot of flight prices to various cities, allowing you to easily see that a trip to Paris costs about the same as one to Amsterdam. But you’ll also notice that a trip to Dublin, Ireland, will cost nearly $200 more.
Google Flights is also our favorite because you can filter between round-trip and one-way flights, flights aboard specific airlines, nonstop versus direct flights, and even when our flights depart and arrive.
While Google Flights can’t help you book hotels or rental cars like other travel sites, it’s an invaluable tool to compare what it costs to fly to different European cities.
It’s important to remember you will need to search some budget airlines directly, as low-cost carriers like Southwest don’t list their prices on Google Flights.
Book Sooner Rather Than Later
It may seem obvious, but it always helps to reinforce the idea that booking in advance will save you money more times than booking last minute. But, like avoiding peak season, sometimes booking in advance is impossible.
For those moments, turn to a travel professional, like Business Class Experts, to help you find the best flight deals last minute and in business or first-class cabins. Call us today to see how much you can save on your next trip.
Let’s use another example to drive home how much you can save by booking in advance. Take a flight from Miami to Barcelona.
- Miami to Barcelona, June 12 – June 16: $3,272
- Miami to Barcelona, July 9 – July 13: $2,370
As you can see, booking this round-trip flight a month in advance can save you nearly $900. When you search for flights early in the travel planning process, you get more opportunities to fine-tune your results for the best flight available.
Consider Traveling to Cheaper Destinations
While it seems unconventional, you could save big by flying to a cheaper destination within Europe and taking a separate flight or utilizing rail travel to make it to your final destination. This method works very well for countries like Germany.
For example, let’s say you are flying from Los Angeles. You’ll notice that flights to Frankfurt or Berlin are more affordable than Munich or Dresden. The nearly $800 difference between flying to a low-cost city more than makes up for the cost of a train ride to your final destination.
Likewise, a layover can make for a more affordable trip. Using Google Flights, you can choose which hubs you want your layover in, adding to your comfort. Or, you can opt to fly from a different airport nearby to save some extra cash.
It’s not uncommon for flights to be more affordable when you choose to fly from Newark instead of NYC.
Contact a Travel Agency
Planning a trip to Europe can be stressful. That’s why it’s nice to have an expert in your corner to help you find the best Europe flight deals. Although you can use a travel website like Expedia, their deals consist of economy-class seats with limited carry-on allowances.
Instead, upgrade your trip by calling Business Class Experts. Our expert team of agents can help you find affordable airfare aboard popular carriers like British Airways, Delta, and Lufthansa in business and first class seats.
Fly to popular European destinations, like Lisbon, Portugal, Madrid, Spain, or Milan, Italy, in style. Enjoy expedited security, check-in, boarding, and in-flight amenities like larger seats, elevated menu options, and dedicated flight attendants.
And when you book with Business Class Experts, you can land seats in premium cabins at up to 50% off. Contact us today with your flight details and see how much you can save on a European adventure.
Experience Every Corner of Europe with Business Class Experts
Europe is a dream destination for millions, and for millions more, it’s a work destination with important clients and meetings. With so much happening on the continent, finding cheap flights to Europe shouldn’t be a headache.
And luckily, with a few travel tips and tricks, your next adventure could be your most affordable one yet. It can be even more comfortable, too, when you book with Business Class Experts. Call us today to book first and business-class tickets at a fraction of face value!