How to Get Cheap Airfare to Cabo
By: Cara Gourley
Want to get that airfare to Cabo for less?
There's nothing like knowing you've made the best decision and use of your money. Saving $200 on airfare can mean an upgrade on a room, a scuba diving trip or a really nice dinner at a Cabo San Lucas restaurant.
Here's a few tips to getting that cheap airfare I've learned from spending plenty of time on flight websites.
Buy at the Right Time - This is a two edged sword. If you buy too early, the flights are usually high because the airlines don't know the demand for flights to Cabo yet. If you hold out and wait to about 20-25 days before your trip, the prices will usually drop. But if you buy too late, the prices usually go up.
Pay Attention to Other Buyers' Patterns - A little thinking about what everyone else might be doing comes in handy - especially if you are flying into Cabo from the West Coast. Cabo is a popular vacation spot for most people from California and Arizona. So if you are trying to travel to Cabo San Lucas during a holiday from some of these locations, you will come across high prices. Spend some time thinking about who else might be taking a flight to Cabo San Lucas when you are. If you anticipate a huge demand, you probably want to be one of the earlier bookers.
Or go when everyone else is not headed over to Cabo. The weather is sunny 360 days a year so you won't be missing too much if you decide to visit off season - and you will have a cheaper airfare.
Use Kayak - That's not to say you shouldn't use Orbitz, Travelocity, your airline's website or even a travel agent as well. Kayak is simply great tool to find cheap airfare to Cabo San Lucas because you can see what you are up against. It tells you what you should expect to pay for your airfare on the dates you are looking at, gathering information from most of the major flight search engines as well as airlines.
Kayak lets you be flexible with your dates and set up price alerts for your flight. You can input your flight dates and set the price alert to email you when that price drops significantly. If you have a lot of time before your trip and there's not a rush to book your airfare to Cabo today - set one of these.
Be Flexible with Your Dates - The price can vary by something like $200 depending on the day- especially if you are buying around a holiday. Changing your trip by just one day can save you a ton of money on your airfare to Cabo San Lucas. The dates I've checked below are a sample trip from Houston to Cabo San Lucas (SJD) around Thanksgiving. You can see how the dates jump around and how if you are willing to change by a day or two you can save a bunch.
Travel on Off Days - If you can, try to travel on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Saturdays. Airfare to Cabo San Lucas is usually cheaper on these days because not as many people can travel on them. Also, stay away from flying on the weekends around holidays. Fly in a little before them or a little after to save money.
Check out Auctions- I know plenty of people that have gotten tickets with no blackout dates at auctions. Whether it be the auction at your kid's school, the neighborhood carnival or a fancy sit down charity dinner, you might be able to bid on getting tickets for less than you would if you bought them the regular way. And you can use the tickets or gift cards towards your airfare to Cabo.
Join Frequent Flier Programs - A lot of airlines have specials that they send out to their members. These specials include last minute deals, member only prices and more. Not to mention the obvious benefit to getting miles towards your next trip to Cabo San Lucas when you book using your frequent flier number.
With some airlines, you can even get bonus miles by staying at select Cabo San Lucas hotels - meaning you are even closer to a free trip to Cabo.
Check the Airline's Website for Deals - A lot of times airlines post deals on their websites to specific locations. If you book during the time of the promotion you can save a lot. Sometimes the promotions are saving money on the airfare (I've seen deals like $200 off) and other times on the hotel in the form of a vacation package.
Alaska Airlines and Continental offer plenty of deals for passengers traveling to the Cabo area and sometimes they have really good promo codes.
Buy a Vacation Package - A lot of times booking your hotel, rental car and airfare to Cabo at the same time will save you more money than if you booked it all separately. A lot of the tips above apply to looking for vacation packages on sites like Travelocity and Expedia.
Check the Prices on Wednesday Mornings- This one is more superstition than fact, but it's always worked for me. There's a rumor that the airlines update their fares on late on Tuesday nights. I have no idea if that's true, but I've checked flights on all different days and always found them to be the cheapest on Wednesday mornings. Also, when ever I set a price alert on Kayak, I always get them late Tuesday/early Wednesday.
Saving money on your airfare to Cabo requires work on your part. If you are not willing to spend the time to monitor the prices, you probably will not get the cheapest fare. But the good news is that it only takes a little bit of time and it feels great when you know exactly how much you saved. And it can be a lot of fun.
I hope these tips help you find a cheap airfare to Cabo. Please let me and the other readers know if you have any other tips that work for you.
Cara Gourley is the Director of Web Strategy for All About Mexico as well as an All About Girl. She's a certified Los Cabos Expert and has been to Cabo many times.
If you have any questions on restaurants, hotels or activities, Cara would love to help you! You can head to the forum to ask a question or you can email her directly.