Probably won't help their likeability that the airlines have raised their rates for the second time this week. According to the Associated Press, unpopular Delta was the first to increase fares by between $4 and $10 for domestic routes. United and Continental quickly matched. If Southwest matches, the increases will likely stick.
After another quarter in the red, these increases show investors that the airlines are trying to become profitable. What they show consumers is that they'd better book soon, especially for holiday flights, or they could be paying much, much more to get home to see Grandma.
- Domestic sales tend to pop late on Mondays, so book travel on Tuesday or Wednesday when the other airlines match. Try not to book on a weekend as that's when fares increase (the airlines know consumers use their time away from work to research and book fares.They see an uptick in the number of bookings and respond with upticks in pricing).
- Don't assume two one-way tickets will be more expensive than a round-trip. That's not always the case nowadays (so search for those, too)
- Alas, non-stops are often pricier these days. If you need to save, consider spending some time along the way in an airport
- Be flexible on dates and airports, as it could pay off bigtime.
- Get the broadest search possible with such sites as Kayak.com, DoHop.com and Hipmunk.com