You have been dreaming of a lovely time out in a beautiful destination for months, and you’re finally able to book your tickets and a hotel. But vacations can be expensive, so is there a way to save some money? Fortunately, yes. Find out how to use a simple and affordable tool to get cheaper airline tickets and more.
Airline companies have been known to employ a pricing strategy that makes prices vary depending on where you book from. That’s why spoofing your virtual location with a VPN can save you some money, which you can then spend on your vacation.
But a VPN is not just a tool meant to mask your location. It can do much more: encrypt your data or even block shady websites, preventing you from needing later malware removal.
What is a VPN, and how does it work?
A VPN is an easy-to-use tool that will help you browse the internet safely and privately. It is simple only from the user’s perspective – technically, it does many complicated things to secure your connection using the wonders of modern technology.
When you normally connect to a web service, your device sends a request containing information such as its IP address. This request is necessary to establish a connection between your device and the server, and the IP address is used to tell the service where to send a response.
Simply put, a VPN acts as a mediator between you and your web service. When you connect to the internet through a VPN, your device does not contact the service directly. Instead, it contacts the VPN server. This server then redirects the data to your destination, encrypting it in the process.
This may sound a bit redundant – after all, data packages must travel further to reach their destination. But using a VPN has its advantages. These are just a few of them:
- Strong encryption. Good VPNs use modern and strong encryption techniques to protect the data that passes through their servers. This creates an extra security layer and reduces the data theft risk.
- IP masking. Redirecting your connection through a VPN server means that the service you are accessing “sees” the VPN server’s IP address and not yours. This is great for private browsing and hiding your location.
- One VPN server is used by multiple users. This makes your experience even more private, as there is no way to connect a single person to an activity.
Why do airplane ticket prices vary?
If you have bought flight tickets online, you may have noticed that their prices vary – even daily. This happens for several reasons, and here are the most important ones:
- Country wealth. High-income countries have wealthier citizens who can spend more money on vacations. This is why flight tickets are more expensive in the US than in India.
- Holiday season. More people travel when they have some free time. They also want to visit their loved ones during important holidays. Airplane tickets can be more expensive when a significant date is approaching.
- The popularity of a particular destination. Residents of certain countries and cities like to visit certain places. For example, UK citizens like to visit Spain, Portugal, or France when they travel abroad. Flights to these countries can get quite expensive when booked from London or Manchester, especially during the holiday season.
How does a flight booking service know where you are from?
The user’s location is one of the main factors in determining the price of a flight. But how does a site know you are located in the US or Canada? The most significant tell-tale sign is your IP address. Your IP address reveals your location – not your full home address, of course, but your country, state, or even city.
How to use a VPN to book cheaper flights?
Your IP reveals your location, but luckily, there is a way to bypass this. You can use a VPN and connect to a server that is placed in another country – this will replace your IP with the server’s IP (and location). How to do it step by step?
- There are many VPN providers to choose from, so do your research and pick the best one for you. Remember that a good provider should offer numerous, stable servers in multiple countries and care about your privacy.
- Install the VPN application provided by the chosen service. Apps can be installed on desktop computers, mobile devices, and even routers.
- Clear your website cookies.
- Connect to a VPN server by selecting one located in another country.
- Visit a flight booking service and search for the flight you are interested in. Write down the price and location you used.
- Clear your cookies and change the VPN location.
- Repeat the process with different locations to find the best price.
This method may be a bit time-consuming, as you have to try different locations. There is no way to predict which country will work best, as flight prices constantly fluctuate depending on their popularity, currency values, and other factors. It is, however, worth it – you can save up to $100 on a single flight!
What else can a VPN do?
The process described above works not only for airplane tickets but also for other purchases. If you plan to travel abroad, here’s the good news: you can find cheaper hotel rooms and car rentals using the same method.
Just repeat the process, but this time search on hotel or car rental booking websites and play around with different server locations. Write down the prices, and remember to clear your cookies after every search so they don’t affect the results.