Airfare costs expected to rise, expert shares what travelers need to know to save


(NEW YORK) — Aviation industry executives gathered in Dubai for the annual International Air Transport Association meeting this week, where they revealed that despite record high profit projections, airfare will continue to climb in the coming months.

The group says its pricing prediction is partly due to global inflation and long-term recovery from massive groundings during the pandemic, paired with additional expenses and overhead — including high fuel prices — that will push passenger ticket prices higher.

Brian Kelly, founder of The Points Guy, joined ABC News’ Good Morning America on Tuesday to break down the top takeaways American travelers need to know, plus ways to keep saving where possible.

“There’s good news and bad news today. The good news is in the U.S., our airfare has come down 9%. And we’re looking at pre-pandemic levels,” Kelly said of the current prices. “The bad news is the airlines are still making record profits and they’re doing that because they’re sneaky. They’re finding ways to charge more for what we already pay for. Most of the major airlines are now charging more for checked bags.”

Expert tips to save on airfare as prices continue to rise

“I highly recommend to consumers, if you fly the same airline and check bags once a year, getting that airline co-branded [credit] card could save you hundreds, even thousands of dollars,” Kelly said. “Do not pay the hundreds in bag fees when a credit card that’s $95 can save you money for you and all your companions.”

Flexibility is key when it comes to finding deals, and Kelly reiterated the Goldilocks method that people should use to find the best booking window — not too far in advance and not too last minute.

“There’s a sweet spot … everyone who wants to find a cheap fare, you need to learn to use Google Flights,” Kelly said, adding that it helps people easily compare and shop, set alerts and reverse engineer flight booking plans.

He recommended another site,, which he described as “kind of like Google Flights but for award tickets” to be able to use miles instead of cash.

“So if you’ve got Amex points or Chase points, it will tell you how to transfer the points. The foreign frequent flyer programs are where the best deals are,” he said.

More tips to find the best fares:

  • Fly in the morning
  • Book in advance
  • Fly midweek

Kelly also noted that timing is slightly different for domestic and international travel.

“For international airfare, you’re looking two to three months [out] minimum,” he said. “When you start booking last-minute international, that’s when the prices sky rocket.”

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