Google Flights is a great tool for checking airfare prices. The interface is easy to use and allows for a number of ways to search. Google's site doesn't have a “sales” feel that other airfare search sites do, but I'm sure it's coming. Last I checked they did link out to sites where you could buy tickets, but that's just the tip of the iceberg for Google Flights. One of my favorite features of Google Flights is the ability to track the price of airfare over time.
Earlier in the year I booked a round trip flight to Maui for my wife and I with Alaska Airlines using my companion certificate from Bank of America’s Alaska Credit Card. I'll write about that in another post, but it's a unique benefit for an Airline. I booked at a reasonable rate of $450 round trip. I knew it wasn’t the best price, but because Alaska has one of the cancellation/change polices in the business, I felt comfortable booking knowing that I could re-book if the price went down. With Alaska, if you buy a ticket directly from alaskaair.com and find a lower price at alaskaair.com any time before your flight, simply submit a claim and they will either refund you or give you travel credit.
Now I could go to Alaska’s website or Google Flights each day to track the price… or I could track the price with Google Flights and be notified of any change in price! Google will send you can email each time the price increases or decreases.
Here’s how you do it:
Visit: https://www.google.com/flights and enter the details of the trip you would like to track. Make sure you’re logged into your Google account prior to this step.
At the bottom you’ll see track prices. By default, this off. To track the price of you flight, simply switch that on. After you switch this you’ll begin receiving emails each time there is a change in price.
Approximately three weeks after I began tracking our trip to Maui, I received an email stating that the price of our flight had decreased by $140! I quickly went to Alaska’s site and re-booked my flight and now have $140 credit towards another flight on Alaska. Google’s Flight tracker made the process so much easier than manually checking prices each day and I probably wouldn’t have caught this if it wasn’t for the notification.
This works great for flights that you haven’t booked yet also. You can begin tracking prices months in advance and wait for the right time to book. Google will even keep record of how prices have trended since you began tracking. You can access that after you’ve tracked a flight and it will show up on Google’s main flight page where you would search for a price.
Simply click view all and you’ll see all your tracked trips.
Google’s price history looks like this:
I love tricks like these as they save me both time and money. Hope you find value too!