To estimate the cost of a plane ticket, users can visit a price comparison site such as Kayak.com or the booking agency Expedia.com and search for flights by date and airport. Alternatively, users can search for flights and prices by visiting the site of the chosen airline.
To view detailed information about a flight, including additional charges for items such as baggage, seat selections and in-flight meals, a user may need to proceed through an online booking process. Users are not committed to purchasing a flight until they make a payment. Some airlines allow customers to hold a reservation for a short time, and other sites, such as Expedia.com, allow customers to cancel their bookings within 24 hours.
If there is an additional charge for hold baggage, customers can normally save money by paying for baggage at the time of booking, as prices can more than double if paid at the airport check-in desk.
If a user's travel dates are flexible, she should compare the prices of flights on different days of the week, as these can vary considerably. Kayak.com offers a search option three days before and after the chosen date if Show Flexible Dates is selected before clicking Search. Alternatively, some airlines display a calendar showing the prices of all available flights in each month.