What is Skyscanner Flight?
Skyscanner is a metasearch engine and travel agency based in Edinburgh, Scotland. The site is available in over 30 languages and is used by 100 million people per month. The company lets people research and book travel options for their trips, including flights, hotels, and car hire.
Members of Going know there are a few flight search engines we routinely recommend, and Skyscanner is one of them. Founded in 2001, Skyscanner is one of the most popular and reliable flight search engines.
Like Google Flights and Momondo, Skyscanner is not an OTA (online travel agency), so generally, you don’t book through Skyscanner itself; the site scours hundreds of airlines to find the best flights for the cheapest prices, which you then book through the airline or an OTA.
What is Skyscanner Flight?
Skyscanner is an online booking website that allows you to easily find cheap flights anywhere in the world. Easily find great hotels to accommodate your gang and hire transport to get around once you are there.
Simply put, Skyscanner is like an online travel agent which searches hundreds of airlines and booking agencies across the world to rank the flights for you. The flights are then listed in the order of Best, Cheapest, and Fastest depending on your preference. Finding flights with Skyscanner is so easy because it stops you from checking out all the competitor’s websites one at a time, instead, seeing all the flights at a glance.
Below I will show you how to get the most out of using Skyscanner for flights. Whether you are just jumping on there for pure research, dreaming and searching for inspiration, or actually parting with cash and laying down a real booking.
Once you decide on the right flight for you, it is advisable to check the price against booking directly with the airline. Skyscanner is usually the winning price, meaning you should follow through. Occasionally you may find the cheapest flight through a 3rd party flight booking company such as Expedia. We have had nothing but great results using Skyscanner and have racked up heaps of miles using this fantastic research and booking system. It is definitely not a scam, and if anything can save you money, it’s a winner in my book.
How to book a flight with Skyscanner
Similar to Kayak, it is possible to book through Skyscanner with certain OTAs that they have partnerships with, however, these fares only appear if they are among the cheapest options.
In most cases, you won’t actually book your flight through Skyscanner; instead, Skyscanner will refer you to an OTA or the airline that offers your chosen flight and you’ll book with them. This means that sometimes, Skyscanner’s listed fee isn’t necessarily the fee you end up with. Let’s use an $818 direct flight from Chicago to Rome as an example.
As shown before, once you click the “Select” button you’re taken to a list of OTAs that are offering this route. This $818 fare is being offered by AirfareExperts.
However, if GotoGate were the best option, you’ll find they’re not as upfront with their fees. You’ll actually pay nearly $67 for one checked bag! For a return flight, that brings up the price quite a bit.
Basically, you won’t know what the extra fees are until you go to book your flight (unless you select Premium Economy or higher at the beginning of your search). If it’s Basic Economy, the fees could add hundreds to your final bill—including fees for checked luggage, hand luggage, seat selection, and meals.
How does Skyscanner work?
- Skyscanner uses sophisticated algorithms to gather and analyze data from various travel providers to provide the most up-to-date and accurate information to its users. Additionally, Skyscanner earns a commission from the travel providers for each booking made through their website, so the service is free for users.
How to use Skyscanner
To use Skyscanner, you can start your search on the open-ended side of things without needing exact dates or locations. This is one of the great things about Skyscanner. However, for the purposes of this exercise, we’ll do a specific search for flights from Dallas (any airport) to Lisbon, Portugal.
STEP 1: Start with the basics
Begin on Skyscanner by entering your desired dates and a destination option in the search bar. As mentioned above, you can select a specific airport, city, or country, or you can use the “Everywhere” option.
In addition to your dates, you’ll also select the desired cabin and the number of tickets. If you’re unsure of the dates, you can choose an entire month or the “Cheapest Month” option. All of these initial options give you a ton of flexibility in searching for the best and/or cheapest flights.
STEP 2: Review and sort your results by preference
From here, you will see all the available flight results. They’ll automatically be sorted initially by “Best”. However, you can choose to sort the results by other factors such as “Cheapest first” or “Fastest first.
You can also filter results further via the filter options on the left-hand side by factors such as the number of stops, departure times, specific airlines, and more.
STEP 3: Buying flights through Skyscanner
Once you see a flight that works for you, click “Select” and you will be taken to the checkout page, either on an OTA or the airline’s website, where the specific flight was found. Skyscanner will quickly check to make sure the deal is still available. From there, you can continue booking your cheap flight. Simple as that!
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