2020 Guide to Using Kayak Explore
Before we dive into Kayak Explore, I will say that in my line of work I fly a lot! These days I average about 55 flights a year. Like many of you, I am obsessed with finding insanely cheap flights.
When searching for a flight I spend hours sitting in front of a brightly lit screen, tearing into a bag of popcorn, and watching flight prices as if I were watching a blood pumping movie at the cinema. Finding cheap flights in a passion which is why I want to talk about a useful tool that will help you find some awesome flight deals.
Of course, I mean Kayak Explore and Kayak’s other tools to learn how to find cheap flights.
Last year, one of my most popular posts was how to find insanely cheap flights. While this article is perfect, well written, and incredibly engaging (*Cough*) it mainly uses Skyscanner, and budget airlines in Europe.
This post we are going to switch it up and use nothing but Kayak Explore, Kayak Price Alerts, and Price Forecast (Kayak’s Flight Price Predictor)
The reason for this is because not everyone wants to use Skyscanner, and certainly, not everyone wishes to use budget airlines.
How to Find the Cheapest Ticket with Kayak Explore
Even when using Kayak Explore it is important to note that the easiest way to find cheap flights is if you don’t have your heart set on a particular destination, and you don’t have specific dates you need to travel. Instead, we will look at a few destinations based on the lowest prices we can find.
To properly appreciate and use these tips you need to the have carefree a mindset open to going wherever the wind (Or in this case, the cheapest flight) takes you.
If you are on the other side of the coin and you have specific dates and destination don’t worry. Kayak Explore and Kayak’s other tools to your advantage.
What is Kayak Explore?
Kayak Explore is a search option on the website. What Kayak Explore does is shows you low flight prices from around the world.
Say you have two weeks off and you want a beach holiday. You don’t care what beach you visit, all you need is the speedos, sun, sand, and booze.
Well, Kayak Explore is the perfect option for you. When we open Kayak Explore, a massive world map pops up showing us cheap flights all over the globe. Now we can easily find a beach that suits your needs.
Opening Kayak Explore
You won’t find Kayak Explore as a tab on the menu which I find funny because it is such a useful option. Here are two quick options to open Kayak Explore.
1- Google “Kayak Explore.”
2- On Kayak menu, you will see a little box in the corner. Scroll over to the box and click the explore.
Using Kayak Explore to Find Awesome Flight Deals
Once we click Kayak Explore the world opens up to us.
Isn’t it glorious?
Looking at all the places it is possible to go always kicks my wanderlust into overdrive!
Now we have some options that allow us to play around with the map to find the cheapest flights.
Understanding the Kayak Explore Options
One the left side of Kayak Explore we see the options panel.
The options are pretty self-explanatory, but we will go over them briefly because there a few things we should note. Specifically the date section.
Airport – The first Kayak Explore option lets us change our departure airport. Fares differ drastically depending on what airport you are using for a departure.
One tip I always use when looking for cheap flights (Especially international ones) is to fly out of a major travel hub like New York, Chicago, Boston, or LA. International fares are usually cheaper when flying out of these airports.
You can also find super cheap tickets to these destinations. Breaking up the ticket like this can save you hundreds, and it is a technique I use often.
However, it doesn’t work 100% of the time, and it can add hours to planning out a flight, so it is something you need to decide if you want to play around with it yourself.
Date – You can search by season and also by month. Kayak Explore works best if you don’t have dates in mind. If you try to search specific dates on a location, it will take you to a regular Kayak search.
However, even if you do you can use Kayak Explore to get a good idea of where it will be cheap to fly.
Price – Kayak Explore lets you change the search based on price
Flight Time – Search Kayak Explore based on the length of the flight.
How to Use Kayak Explore When You Don’t Have Exact Dates
Finding Kayak Flights with Kayak Explore
So let’s try it out with the mindset we are looking for that perfect beach holiday.
My options for the search are going to be from CMH. (Closest Major Airport from where I grew up)
Options I used in Kayak Explore for this search
Flight Time: Any
Right away a couple of options stick out to me. At a glance, the cheapest option is Orlando at $168. That’s great if I want to visit Harry Potter World, but we are on a quest for a beach. The closest beaches to Orlando are an hour or two hours away.
While it is the cheapest flight on Kayak Explore, it is not our ideal option for the beach.
But I see a few other useful options.
I can get to Burbank, San Diego, San Salvador, and the Provincials for all under $400 round trip.I feel my wanderlust tingling.
I’ve never been to San Salvador so let’s go.
Clicking on San Salvador, I see the departure and return dates for this price. In this case, I would leave early April and be gone for 25 days.
If you don’t have 25 days, you can play around with the dates, but the price will change.
If you do have that much time well then we just an international flight to a beach destination for under $400. How insane is that!
Using Kayak Explore to Find A Cheap Flight With Specific Dates
I know what your thinking, “That last example was great Stephen but I only have time to travel in May, not April, and only 14 days of vacation, not 25”.
Fret not dear reader. We just have to do a new search and find a different destination.
My options this Kayak Explore search,
Price: under $400 ( We want the same price as the last example)
Flight time: Any
Ok, I see I can get to Puerto Rico for under $400, however, clicking on it we see that the trip is only 4 days. Not worth it!
So we have to play with the options.
We change the times and search again. In this example, I changed the dates from May 10th – May 23rd.
Searching I see that a flight those days the price jumps to almost $450.
That’s the cheapest we can find it unless you want to keep playing around with the dates and airports to see if we can find a better price.
Now we have a couple of options.
1- Pony up and pay the $450
2- Use Kayak’s other tools to see if the price will drop.
For this example, which lets us save time we are going to use Kayak Alerts and Price Forecast which makes Kayak do the work for us.
Related Post: Do you need a passport to go to Puerto Rico
Combining Both Kayak Explore and Kayak Alerts for A Potent Combo.
What are Kayak Alerts
1- Kayak Alert emails you when the fare changes.
2- It also sends you emails about fats to your favorite destinations
3- Informs you of great deals
4- In the last example, we couldn’t find a flight to Puerto Rico for under $400.
5- The smart thing is to play the waiting game.
Personally, I think Kayak Alerts work best when we have anywhere from 1 to 3 months before a flight. If you are flying in a couple of weeks, then your best there is a good chance the price will rise so your best option is to suck it up and pay the extra or use the flight forecast to see the chances of getting a lower fare.
What is Kayak Price Forecast (Flight Price Predictor)
Kayak Price Forecast is a tool that analyzes the latest trends and lets us know if the price of the flight is likely to fall or rise.
Predicting airfare is a tricky business but the tool is pretty accurate gives you the probability of what the flight is likely to do.
In this example, we see that they are telling us that we should buy. It says that plane ticket has a good chance of getting more expensive in the next week.
Kayak Forecast is a helpful tool that gives us more information to let us make an informed decision about whether or not it is the right time to buy a flight.
More Kayak Explore Tips to Find Cheap Flights
1– Open Dates often mean finding the lowest price
2– January tends to be the cheapest month to buy flight
3– Clear Browser Cookies when you search for a flight
4– While not only true many times Sundays are the cheapest day to buy flights and it is usually cheaper to fly out on Tuesdays
5– Using a VPN to change your location can sometimes change the price of tickets.
Another thing to pay attention to in the ever-changing rules. For example the laptop ban in flights likely to expand to Europe.
Take some time and toy around with the options, and it is possible to find some insane deals. One crucial part of finding a cheap flight in Kayak Explore is patience using price alerts and forecast to make the best decision possible.
When looking for a flight, I have the mindset of it being a money saving game. Say it takes me two hours to find the trip I want, but I saved $200. Well in my mind I just made $100 an hour.
Take that extra money and spend it traveling around Europe, backpacking Italy, or traveling around Europe
View it as a game, and you will be surprised at how addicting and fun it is finding the cheapest flight with Kayak Explore.