by Joe Jamieson

All Disciplines, All Destinations, Guides

Once you've booked your elective overseas, one of the first things you’ll do is look at flights.

But you'll quickly realise that the cost of air travel is all over the place in the wake of the pandemic.

Even budget airlines are having a hard time keeping prices down.

But if you know where to look you can still find surprisingly good deals. In this post you'll find out all the tips and tricks that will help you dig up the best flight deals out there.

Flight comparison sites

Your first and most obvious port of call is the flight comparison sites. Chances are you’ve used one before, but one mistake a lot of people make is not using multiple sites.

Most sites will show you the same or similar prices. But if you’re willing to put in the time to keep digging, more often than not you’ll find a price on one site that none of the other sites has.

— Someone from Work the World will meet you when your plane lands —

You can try the better-known sites like Skyscanner, Kayak, Momondo, Cheapflights.co.uk, Google Flights… And holiday package sites like Expedia, Booking.com and Hotels.com sell flights individually too, so they’re worth checking out.

Your best bet is to hop onto Google, type “flight comparison sites” and start clicking.

Change your travel dates

Flights blogYour elective will start on Sunday. But that doesn't mean you have to arrive on a Sunday.

If you’re thinking about doing some travelling before you start your placement (or after it ends), you have flexibility when it comes to dates. Sometimes you can save yourself a significant amount of money simply by moving your arrival date back or forward by a day or two.

A lot of the flight booking websites and apps will let you add in your dates, then tick a ‘+/- 1 day’ box to give you a broader range of prices.

Take advantage of your student status

If you’re a student, you’re probably an expert at finding places that offer student discounts.

It’s no different when you’re looking for flights. You won’t find the words ‘student discount’ labelled on websites, but if you know where to look and what to ask you can still find exclusive deals for students.

ORIENTATION

— Some airlines will offer a discount on group bookings too —

First up — try the student travel agencies (a quick Google search will give you a good list). Student Universe is a good first port of call and they have a reputation for being able to deliver better prices in a lot of cases. The only caveat is that you have to be under 25 to benefit from the deals.

It's also worth heading over to StudentBeans. Their website isn't travel-specific, but they have a great flights page that's regularly updated with deals.

And if all else fails, just ask. You can contact airlines and travel agencies directly to see if they offer student discounts that they’re not advertising.

Timing is key

Flight prices move up and down all the time throughout the year. So don't worry if flights seem expensive at the time you're researching — there's a good chance the price will change.

Flights blog

— You'll be on your once-in-a-lifetime healthcare placement before you know it —

One of the best ways to get a preview of how flight prices might fluctuate, is through an app called Hopper. You enter your destination and where you’re flying from, and it will display when it thinks flight prices will move up and down based on historical data.

Just remember to get your elective placement booked in first to make sure your space is secured.

Don’t be afraid of stopover flights

A direct flight from A to B is ideal, especially when it’s long-haul. But booking a stopover flight is a lot easier than you might think. And it’s a whole lot cheaper.

This might be one of the first times you’ve travelled alone, so you might feel apprehensive about the idea. But the majority of people who travel with us find that a stopover flight saves them enough money that the extra few hours in transit are totally worth it.

Flights blog

It’s as simple as unticking the 'direct flights only' box on flight comparison sites and watching the price come down.

Remember that flights can be delayed, and if your first flight comes in late, that might mean missing the second flight. But your airline will take care of this and make sure you’re on the next flight out. Whatever happens, we know your flight details before you depart and will monitor delays. You can feel confident knowing that a member of our team will be there at the airport to meet you whenever you arrive.

Do some fundraising

We’re cheating a bit here as this isn’t about finding cheap flights. But doing some fundraising before your trip can help enormously. Some people who have travelled with us have managed to raise money for their flights and placement.

Clark, Lisa

— You'd be surprised how far a couple of bake sales will get you —

Discover money-making tips and tricks to help you raise funds for your placement.

Get help from our experts

Once you start looking for flights after you have booked your Work the World placement, you'll get all the advice you could possibly need from our experts. We'll give you specific details about which airports are best to fly to, and answer any questions you might have about the pickup process.

As an aside, it's also a good idea to get a travel insurance policy to make sure you're covered for every eventuality. The best time to do this is as soon as possible after you've booked your placement with us.

Explore Destinations

Browse all of our destinations to see what kind of once-in-a-lifetime travel opportunities are in store for you.

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