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Tips For Saving Money On Airfare

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Tips For Saving Money On Airfare
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Tips For Saving Money On Airfare (ABC News)

ABC News' Paula Faris reports:

Looking for a deal on airfare?

A lot of people are wondering what the potential merger between American and US Airways would mean for their pocketbook. With this in mind, here are some tips on booking airfare you can follow that could save you money.

1. Book in pairs. When booking for a family or group, booking in pairs can help you avoid higher prices that many airlines charge for the convenience of sitting together.

2. Buy your tickets on Tuesday afternoon. It turns out that airlines typically release their sale fares on Tuesdays at 3 p.m., making it a good time to secure those deals before they expire or are gobbled up by other sale-searching travelers.

3. Shop around on websites. When searching for the best prices on airfare, it is a good idea to look at multiple websites. Hipmunk.com has an "agony tab" that combines price, duration and number of stops so you can determine how painful your upcoming trip will be. Sign up at Yapta.com and it will send you alerts if the rate falls before you book.

4. Book directly with the airline. Airlines often pay a $10 to $15 commission on flights that are booked through a discount site. Because of this, airlines often encourage customers to book through their official websites by offering incentives like promo codes and deals posted on their Twitter and Facebook accounts. Most airlines don't publicize this, but many will give you a refund if the price of your flight goes down after booking. You just have to call them.

5. Be flexible with your dates. Being flexible with your travel dates and searching nearby airports could save you lots of money. Choosing a flight out of an airport near your first choice for a day earlier or later could help keep more money in your wallet.

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