Finding Cheap Flights with Google

My boyfriend is going back to LA in November, so I’m looking for flights out there in November or December. I’ve never had to look for a flight myself before, so I’m not really sure the best way to go about it. Luckily, Google exists.

Google has a flight search feature that’s super convenient. I put in that I want to leave from Minneapolis-St. Paul (MSP) and fly to LAX round-trip. Then I picked a random date at the end of November and clicked on the Flexible Dates tab.

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The cheapest option is $81 for a round-trip flight, so I picked that I want to leave Minneapolis on November 30 and return on December 7.

Once I’ve picked my dates, Google shows me the list of flights available starting with the cheapest. In this case, the $81 flight is on Spirit.

I’ve never heard anything good about Spirit, so I definitely want to avoid it. Below the date selection boxes are a row of drop-down menus to refine my search. I picked the Airline menu and clicked that I don’t want flights from Spirit shown.

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You can also choose if you want to only see flights from specific airlines by clicking the checkmark next to them.

Excluding Spirit makes the cheapest flight $178 on Sun Country and the next cheapest $187 on Delta. Google also notifies me that there is a $145 flight on December 2, so I can save $33 if I leave two days later.

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Since I’m leaving from Minneapolis, my mom and I want to stop at the Mall of America to shop before I go, so I want an evening flight. I also want a non-stop flight, which all of the cheapest options are. I will pick either the 8:15pm flight on Sun Country or the 7:55pm flight on Delta.

I’ve never heard of Sun Country, so I googled it to find reviews. Nearly all of the negative reviews are about delays, so I am willing to try flying with Sun Country. However, since it’s a small budget airline, the $178 only covers the flight and there are extra fees involved. From the reviews I read, I’ve gathered that there are free beverages on the flight, but snacks cost extra. I usually bring my own snacks anyway and the flight is four hours, so this will not be a problem for me. I checked the Sun Country website to find their baggage fees. I don’t expect to have more than one piece of luggage for a week-long trip, so that one suitcase will cost me $25 each way, totaling $50 on top of the $178 for the flight.

Delta has the same baggage fees as Sun Country, so the Sun Country flight is still about $10 cheaper. That isn’t much of a difference, but I will probably fly with Sun Country for this trip to find out if they are worth flying with in the future when there is more of a price difference between flights.

What are your tips and tricks for finding the cheapest flight? Have you ever flown with Sun Country and had a good or bad experience? Comment below with your travel advice!

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