How to Book a Flight Using Skyscanner
Booking a flight has never been easier. With one simple search, travelers can compare thousands of flights to instantly find the cheapest, fastest, and best value flights using Skyscanner. In this guide, we’ll show you how to book a flight in just a few simple steps.
What is Skyscanner?
Skyscanner is a flight search engine. To be more general, they are an online travel search engine since they also let you book a hotel and rent a car, but I’ll focus on Skyscanner flights only here.
The website (and the Skyscanner app) are completely free to use. There are neither hidden fees nor additional expenses: the prices you see are the ones you will pay. That transparency is the result of a few years of work and improved consumer protection laws, for the better!
Think of it as Google, but dedicated to finding the cheapest airfare only, among the multitude of airlines and online travel agents (OTAs). Do you know that Google scraps thousands of websites in a few seconds (even less) to present you with the most relevant results for your query? Skyscanner does exactly the same by searching airlines and online travel agents’ websites, by displaying the cheapest flight deals in under 30 seconds.
You don’t actually book Skyscanner’s cheap flights on the website or the app: after selecting your trip, you are redirected to the platform of the airline or OTA, where you complete your booking and pay.
How to Book a Flight Using Skyscanner
Download the Skyscanner App
The Skyscanner App lets you search for flights, store flight information, and set up price alerts that will send you a notification whenever a flight price changes. Once your flight is booked, the app will let you know essential travel information as your departure time nears.
Search for a flight on Skyscanner
Let’s say you’re trying to book a flight from Chicago to Rome. You’d like to go in late spring, before peak season hits, and you have about two weeks of vacation time.
First, select your dates and your location. To get wider results, make sure you leave the “From” and “To” fields open to any airport in the area. You can select your cabin class and the number of travelers here, too. If you want to do some city hopping, select the “Multi-city” option.
Select a flight and review the details
Once you see a flight you like, click on it to review the trip details. Scroll down to see any information that might be important to your flight. We’ll notify you of long layovers, late arrivals, airport changes, and more.
Setting price alerts for Skyscanner flights
If you don’t plan on booking immediately, you can set up an alert by clicking “Get Price Alerts” above your search results. You’ll be asked to log in and then will receive emails for any fluctuations in price. This is useful if your trip is still a long while away or you’re unfamiliar with normal prices for the route and want to be sure you’re getting a good deal.
Type in your personal information
After you select your flight, you’ll be redirected to book with an online travel agent or airline. There, you can type in your passenger details and discover the total cost of the flight.
Set flexible departure locations on Skyscanner flights
If you’re extra flexible with your departure city, then you can search from a country rather than a city e.g. the United Kingdom rather than London. The process for searching is identical to searching from one city, but with an extra step showing you the cheapest price from each departure city within the country prior to the calendar view. The cheapest departure airport might not always be the one you expect.
Set flexible dates on Skyscanner
If you’re more flexible with your dates, you can view prices for the whole month.
There are two ways to do this: you can select the full month before you search, or you can see the full month view in your search results.
To search for a full month, just choose the “Whole month” option in the drop-down menu when you’re selecting dates. You can select a specific month or choose the “Cheapest month” option if you’re extra flexible with dates.
If you’re already browsing your flight results, you can still see what’s available in a month. In the top left corner of your search results, you’ll see a text link that says “Show whole month.”
Click it and suddenly you have many more options. If you’re only interested in direct flights, click the button at the top left for “Non-stop flights only.” Note, the prices shown in this calendar are per leg, not roundtrip. And, unlike on Google Flights, these prices are not live updating and may show some gaps or blank dates. This does not mean there are no flights on these dates, but a user has not searched them recently so Skyscanner has no data for those dates.
Before you complete your booking, you’ll be prompted to add any extras like luggage, meals, lounge passes, seat selection, travel insurance, and more.
Pay close attention to the luggage allowance and meal options as not all flights offer them for free. If you think you’ll need extra baggage, it’s almost always cheaper to add it during the initial booking process rather than adding it later.
Check your email for your flight confirmation
Your flight confirmation should arrive within 24 hours of booking your flight. Always read through your flight confirmation immediately just in case there are any errors. Once you’ve confirmed your flight, put it into the Skyscanner App so that you can stay updated with any flight changes.
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