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Airfare deals are typically only available on limited dates. We recommend you use Google Flights to find dates to fly, then book through an online travel agency such as Orbitz or Expedia, which allows you to cancel flights without penalty by 11pm Eastern Time within one day of booking. However, if you’re using The Platinum Card® from American Express, you’ll need to book directly with the airline or through the Amex Travel portal to get 5x MR points. Remember: Fares may disappear quickly, so book right away and take advantage of Orbitz or Expedia’s courtesy cancellation if you’re unable to get the time away from work or family.
This has been a particularly great season for flight deals. This week alone, we’ve published a number of amazing fares to Spain, Hawaii and other exotic locations for much less than the usual going rate. But sometimes, you just need to get from one coastline to another, whether it’s to visit family back home, to position yourself for a longer international trip or just to get away and explore all this great country has to offer.
Right now, the airlines and their fare competition are conspiring in your favor. A number of nonstop and one-stop routes between the East and West Coasts are going for less than a Benjamin Franklin in each direction. Even better, these prices are widely available from April all the way through mid-February 2020, including around major holidays such as Labor Day, Thanksgiving and Christmas.
While we highly suggest planning out your travel calendar and booking these cheap fares ahead of time, be sure to check the fine print on the flights you purchase to ensure you know all the fare restrictions, as many are in basic economy. If you need to change your plans down the road, it could be costly to since most basic economy tickets don’t allow changes, even for a fee.
A co-brand credit card can help get around some of basic economy’s restrictions, including better boarding groups and a free checked bag.
Airlines: American, Delta, JetBlue, Alaska
Routes: LGA/BOS/JFK/PHL/BWI/MCO/MIA/RDU to/from SFO/SJC/PHX/LAX/SEA
Cost: $93+ one-way, $187+ round-trip
Travel Dates: Most dates between April 2019 and February 2020
Pay With: The Platinum Card® from American Express (5x on airfare booked directly with the airline), Citi Prestige Card (5x on airfare plus excellent trip delay insurance), Citi Premier Card, Chase Sapphire Reserve Card, American Express® Gold Card (3x on airfare) or Chase Sapphire Preferred Card (2x on travel)
Here are a few examples of what you can book:
San Francisco (SFO) to Boston (BOS) for $98 nonstop one-way in basic economy on Delta:
San Francisco (SFO) to Orlando (MCO) from $117 one-way in basic economy on American:
Los Angeles (LAX) to Orlando (MCO) from $187 nonstop round-trip in basic economy on Delta:
Los Angeles (LAX) to Baltimore (BWI) from $199 nonstop round-trip on Alaska:
Maximize Your Purchase
Don’t forget to use a credit card that earns additional points on airfare purchases, such as The Platinum Card® from American Express (5x on flights booked directly with airlines or American Express Travel), Citi Prestige Card (5x on airfare on plus excellent trip delay insurance), Chase Sapphire Reserve Card, American Express® Gold Card, Citi Premier Card (3x on airfare) or the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card (2x on all travel purchases). Check out this post for more on maximizing airfare purchases.
Featured image by Teresa Barajas via Unsplash.
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CARD HIGHLIGHTS: Delta Sky Club and Centurion lounge access, $200 annual airline fee credit and up to $200 in Uber credits annually
- Earn 60,000 Membership Rewards® points after you use your new Card to make $5,000 in purchases in your first 3 months.
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