As a student, the cost of travel can be a major barrier to exploring the world and gaining new experiences. However, there are ways to make travel more affordable, and one of the best ways is to take advantage of discounted flights for students. In this article, we will discuss the benefits of student travel discounts, how to find them, and what to keep in mind when booking a discounted flight as a student.
There are many ways to find discounted flights for students that can save you money and time. In this article, I’ll share with you some of the best tips and tricks to find the best deals on flights for students, based on my own experience and research. I’ll also compare and contrast some of the most popular student flight platforms and websites, and give you my honest opinion on which ones are worth using.
By the end of this article, you’ll have a better idea of how to find cheap flights for students, and hopefully, you’ll be ready to book your next trip!
What are discounted flights for students?
Discounted flights for students are special airfare offers that are exclusively available for students or young travelers. They are usually cheaper than regular fares and come with extra benefits, such as flexible dates, free baggage allowance, or rewards programs. Some airlines also offer student discounts on certain routes or destinations.
Why Students Should Travel
Before we dive into the details of how to find cheap flights for students, let’s talk about why students should travel in the first place. Traveling is not only fun and exciting, but it can also be very beneficial for your personal and professional development.
Here are some of the reasons why students should travel:
- Traveling can broaden your horizons and expose you to different cultures, languages, and perspectives. You can learn a lot from interacting with people from different backgrounds and lifestyles, and gain a deeper understanding of yourself and the world around you.
- Traveling can boost your confidence and independence. You can challenge yourself by stepping out of your comfort zone and trying new things, such as navigating a foreign city, ordering food in a different language, or making new friends. You can also learn how to cope with unexpected situations and solve problems on your own.
- Traveling can enhance your academic and career prospects. You can enrich your education by taking courses abroad, doing internships or volunteer work, or conducting research in your field of interest. You can also add valuable skills and experiences to your resume that can make you stand out in the job market.
- Traveling can improve your mental and physical health. You can reduce stress and anxiety by taking a break from your routine and enjoying life. You can also improve your fitness and well-being by engaging in physical activities, such as hiking, biking, or swimming.
As you can see, traveling can offer many benefits for students, but it can also be expensive. That’s why finding cheap flights for students is so important. It can help you save money that you can use for other expenses, such as accommodation, food, transportation, or entertainment.
The benefits of student travel discounts
- Lower airfare: The most obvious benefit of student travel discounts is that they can help you save money on your flight. With discounted airfare, you can stretch your budget further and afford to travel more.
- More flexibility: Many student travel discounts are available on a limited basis, which means that you may need to book your flight on short notice. This can actually be a good thing, as it can give you more flexibility and freedom to travel when you want.
- More opportunities: Discounted flights for students can open up new opportunities for travel, such as studying abroad or interning in another country. These experiences can be incredibly valuable and help you stand out in the job market.
How to find student travel discounts
- Check with your school: Many colleges and universities have partnerships with airlines and travel companies that offer discounted flights for students. Check with your school’s study abroad office or career center to see if they have any deals or discounts available.
- Search online: There are many websites and travel agencies that specialize in student travel discounts. Try searching for “student airfare discounts” or “student travel deals” to find a variety of options.
- Ask the airline: Some airlines offer student discounts, but they may not be advertised. If you are booking a flight, be sure to ask the airline if they have any student discounts available.
How to Find Cheap Flights for Students
Now that we’ve established why students should travel, let’s get into the nitty-gritty of how to find cheap flights for students. There are many factors that can affect the price of flights, such as demand, supply, seasonality, location, duration, time of booking, etc. However, there are also some strategies that can help you find the best deals on flights for students. Here are some of them:
Be flexible with your dates and destinations
One of the easiest ways to find cheap flights for students is to be flexible with your travel plans. If you don’t have a specific date or destination in mind, you can use tools like KAYAK Explore or Skyscanner Everywhere to see where you can go for the cheapest price. You can also use tools like Google Flights or Hopper to see when is the best time to fly to your desired destination. By being flexible with your dates and destinations, you can take advantage of low fares and discounts that may not be available otherwise.
Use student travel websites
One of the easiest ways to find discounted flights for students is to use student travel websites, such as StudentUniverse, KAYAK for Students, or STA Travel. These websites specialize in offering cheap student flights and other travel deals for students and young travelers. They also have partnerships with hundreds of airlines and travel providers, so you can compare prices and options from different sources.
To use these websites, you usually need to register as a member and verify your student status. You can do this by providing your school email address, student ID card, or other proof of enrollment. Once you’re verified, you can search for flights by entering your origin, destination, dates, and number of travelers. You can also filter your results by price, duration, stops, airlines, or other criteria.
Some of these websites also offer promo codes or coupons that you can use to get extra discounts on your flights. You can find these codes on their websites, social media pages, newsletters, or blogs. Just make sure to read the terms and conditions before applying them.
Use student flight platforms and websites.
Another way to find cheap flights for students is to use platforms and websites that cater specifically to student travelers. These platforms and websites often have partnerships with airlines and travel agencies that allow them to offer exclusive discounts and deals for students. Some of the most popular student flight platforms and websites are:
- StudentUniverse: StudentUniverse is one of the largest student flight platforms in the world. It offers cheap student flights to over 200 destinations across 60 countries. It also offers discounts on hotels, tours, activities, insurance, etc. To use StudentUniverse, you need to create a free account and verify your student status with a valid ID or email address. You can also get promo codes on top of everyday discounts during peak booking times.
- KAYAK for Students: KAYAK for Students is a feature of KAYAK that allows you to find special airfare for students from several suppliers.
- STA Travel: STA Travel is another leading student flight platform that operates in over 60 countries. It offers cheap student flights to hundreds of destinations around the world. It also offers discounts on accommodation, tours, insurance, rail passes, etc. To use STA Travel, you need to create a free account and verify your student status with a valid ID or email address. You can also find special offers and deals on their website or social media pages.
Other student flight platforms and websites that you can check out are: ISIC, ITIC and IYTC cards, Student Beans, International Student Identity Card (ISIC), International Teacher Identity Card (ITIC), International Youth Travel Card (IYTC), etc.
Use flight comparison and booking websites
Another way to find cheap flights for students is to use flight comparison and booking websites that can help you find the best prices and options for your travel needs. These websites allow you to compare flights from different airlines and travel agencies, and book them directly or through a third-party provider.
Some of the most popular flight comparison and booking websites are:
- Skyscanner: Skyscanner is one of the most widely used flight comparison and booking websites in the world. It searches millions of flights from over 1,200 sources and shows you the best options for your chosen dates and destinations. You can also use Skyscanner to find cheap hotels, car rentals, and travel guides.
- Google Flights: Google Flights is another powerful flight comparison and booking website that uses Google’s technology and data to help you find the best flights for your travel plans. You can use Google Flights to see prices, schedules, routes, airlines, airports, etc. You can also use Google Flights to track prices, get alerts, see price trends, etc.
- Momondo: Momondo is another popular flight comparison and booking website that searches hundreds of travel sites and shows you the best deals for your travel needs. You can use Momondo to find cheap flights, hotels, car rentals, etc. You can also use Momondo to discover new destinations, get travel tips, see ratings, etc.
- Other flight comparison and booking websites that you can check out are: Kayak, Expedia, Travelocity, Orbitz, Priceline, CheapOair, etc.
Use flight search engines and aggregators
Another way to find cheap flights for students is to use flight search engines and aggregators that can help you find hidden deals and discounts that may not be available on other platforms or websites. These flight search engines and aggregators use algorithms and data to scour the web for the cheapest flights for your travel needs. Some of the most popular flight search engines and aggregators are:
- Kiwi.com: Kiwi.com is one of the most innovative flight search engines and aggregators in the world. It uses a unique technology called Virtual Interlining that allows you to combine flights from different airlines that may not normally cooperate with each other. This way, you can find cheaper and faster routes that may not be available elsewhere.
- Secret Flying: Secret Flying is another amazing flight search engine and aggregator that helps you find incredible deals and discounts on flights around the world. It uses a team of experts and enthusiasts who scour the web for error fares, fuel dumps, mistake prices, flash sales, etc. You can also use Secret Flying to get notified of new deals via email or social media.
- Scott’s Cheap Flights: Scott’s Cheap Flights is another awesome flight search engine and aggregator that helps you find cheap flights for students and other travelers. It uses a team of analysts who monitor airfare prices and alert you when they find amazing deals on flights to your favorite destinations. You can also use Scott’s Cheap Flights to get personalized recommendations based on your preferences.
- Other flight search engines and aggregators that you can check out are: Airfarewatchdog, Airfarewatchdog, Skiplagged, Jetradar, etc.
Follow student travel blogs and social media pages
A third way to find discounted flights for students is to follow student travel blogs and social media pages. These are online platforms where you can find useful information, tips, advice, and inspiration for your travel plans. You can also learn from other students’ experiences and stories, and discover new destinations and opportunities.
Some of the best student travel blogs and social media pages are:
- The Abroad Guide: The Abroad Guide is a blog that helps you make the most of your study abroad experience. It covers topics such as how to choose a program, how to prepare for departure, how to budget and save money, how to travel around your host country and beyond, how to deal with culture shock and homesickness, how to make friends and network, and more. You can also find destination guides, packing lists, reviews, and recommendations.
- The Blonde Abroad: The Blonde Abroad is a blog that features travel tips, guides, resources, and inspiration for female travelers. It covers topics such as solo travel, adventure travel, luxury travel, budget travel, sustainable travel, wellness travel, and more. You can also find destination guides, itineraries, packing lists, reviews, and recommendations.
- Nomadic Matt: Nomadic Matt is a blog that helps you travel the world on a budget. It covers topics such as how to plan your trip, how to find cheap flights and accommodation, how to find cheap food and activities, how to travel safely and responsibly, and more. You can also find destination guides, itineraries, travel tips, resources, and recommendations.
- The Broke Backpacker: The Broke Backpacker is a blog that helps you travel the world on a shoestring budget. It covers topics such as how to backpack around the world, how to find cheap accommodation and transportation, how to make money online or on the road, how to travel with a purpose, and more. You can also find destination guides, itineraries, travel tips, resources, and recommendations.
You can follow these blogs and social media pages by subscribing to their newsletters, liking their Facebook pages, following their Instagram accounts, or joining their communities. You can also interact with them by leaving comments, asking questions, or sharing your feedback.
Sign up for flight alerts and newsletters
A fourth way to find discounted flights for students is to sign up for flight alerts and newsletters from airlines or travel websites. These are email notifications that inform you of the latest deals and offers on flights and other travel services. They can help you find cheap flights for students before they sell out or increase in price.
Some of the best flight alerts and newsletters are:
- Scott’s Cheap Flights: Scott’s Cheap Flights is a service that sends you email alerts when there are amazing deals on flights from your preferred airports. You can choose between a free plan or a premium plan. The free plan gives you access to some of the deals, while the premium plan gives you access to all of the deals, plus perks such as mistake fares, rare deals, peak season and holiday flights, and more.
- Skyscanner: Skyscanner is a website that helps you find and compare prices on flights, hotels, car rentals, and more. You can sign up for their newsletter to get updates on the best travel deals and tips. You can also set up price alerts for specific routes or destinations, and get notified when the prices change.
- Airfarewatchdog: Airfarewatchdog is a website that helps you find the best fares on flights from your favorite airlines and airports. You can sign up for their newsletter to get daily or weekly updates on the best deals and offers. You can also set up fare alerts for specific routes or destinations, and get notified when the prices drop.
To sign up for these flight alerts and newsletters, you need to provide your email address and some preferences, such as your departure airport, destination, travel dates, budget, etc. You can also customize your settings to receive more or less emails, or unsubscribe at any time.
Use flight hacks and tricks
Another way to find cheap flights for students is to use flight hacks and tricks that can help you save money and time on your flights. These flight hacks and tricks are based on some loopholes, glitches, or tips that can help you find cheaper or better flights than the ones advertised. Some of the most popular flight hacks and tricks are:
- Hidden city ticketing: Hidden city ticketing is a flight hack that involves booking a flight with a layover in your desired destination, and then skipping the final leg of the flight. For example, if you want to fly from New York to Los Angeles, you can book a flight from New York to San Francisco with a layover in Los Angeles, and then get off the plane in Los Angeles and skip the flight to San Francisco. This way, you can save money by paying for a cheaper flight than a direct one. However, hidden city ticketing has some risks and drawbacks, such as losing your checked baggage, voiding your frequent flyer miles, or getting penalized by the airline.
- Alternate airports: Alternate airports are flight hacks that involve flying to or from a different airport than the one you originally planned. For example, if you want to fly from New York to London, you can check the prices of flights to or from other nearby airports, such as Newark, Philadelphia, Boston, etc. This way, you can find cheaper or more convenient flights than the ones from your main airport. However, alternate airports also have some disadvantages, such as extra transportation costs, longer travel times, or less frequent flights.
- Multi-city flights: Multi-city flights are flight hacks that involve booking multiple flights in one itinerary instead of a round-trip or one-way flight. For example, if you want to fly from New York to Paris and then to Rome and back to New York, you can book a multi-city flight that includes all these flights in one ticket. This way, you can save money by taking advantage of lower fares or special deals on certain routes or airlines. However, multi-city flights also have some limitations, such as higher taxes and fees, stricter cancellation policies, or more complicated booking processes.
- Other flight hacks and tricks that you can check out are: VPNs (virtual private networks), incognito mode, fare alerts, newsletters, coupons, coupons for flights, etc.
How to book discounted flights for students?
Once you find a discounted flight for students that suits your needs and budget, you need to book it as soon as possible. Here are some steps to follow when booking a student flight:
Check the eligibility criteria
Before you book a discounted flight for students, you need to check the eligibility criteria of the airline or travel agency. These criteria may vary depending on the provider, but they usually include:
- Age: You need to be within a certain age range, usually between 16 and 31 years old.
- Student status: You need to be a full-time or part-time student at an accredited institution, such as a school, college, or university. You may also need to provide a valid student ID card, school email address, or proof of enrollment.
- Destination: You need to be traveling to or from a specific destination or region that is eligible for the student discount. Some providers may have restrictions on certain countries or areas.
- Travel period: You need to be traveling within a certain time frame that is eligible for the student discount. Some providers may have blackout dates or seasons when the discount is not available.
- Booking period: You need to book your flight within a certain time frame that is eligible for the student discount. Some providers may have limited availability or expiration dates for the discount.
Make sure you read and understand the terms and conditions of the student discount before you book your flight. If you fail to meet the eligibility criteria, you may not be able to use the discount or you may face penalties or fees.
Compare prices and options
After you check the eligibility criteria, you need to compare prices and options from different airlines or travel agencies. You can use websites like Skyscanner, Kayak, or Google Flights to find and compare flights from various sources. You can also filter your results by price, duration, stops, airlines, or other criteria.
When comparing prices and options, you need to consider several factors, such as:
- Total cost: You need to look at the total cost of your flight, including taxes, fees, baggage charges, seat selection fees, etc. Sometimes a flight may seem cheaper at first glance, but it may have hidden costs that make it more expensive than another option.
- Flight duration: You need to look at the flight duration of your flight, including layovers and transit times. Sometimes a flight may seem faster at first glance, but it may have long layovers or multiple stops that make it more inconvenient than another option.
- Flight schedule: You need to look at the flight schedule of your flight, including departure and arrival times. Sometimes a flight may seem more convenient at first glance, but it may have early morning or late night flights that make it more difficult than another option.
- Flight quality: You need to look at the flight quality of your flight, including comfort, service, entertainment, food, etc. Sometimes a flight may seem more attractive at first glance but it may have poor comfort, service, entertainment, food, etc. that make it less enjoyable than another option.
You should compare prices and options from different sources and weigh the pros and cons of each option. You should also check the reviews and ratings of other travelers who have used the same flight or provider. This can help you get a better idea of what to expect and avoid any unpleasant surprises.
Book your flight and confirm your details
After you compare prices and options, you need to book your flight and confirm your details. You can book your flight directly with the airline or travel agency, or through a third-party website or app. You should always check the booking confirmation email or page to make sure everything is correct, such as your name, date, time, destination, etc. You should also check the cancellation and refund policy in case you need to change or cancel your flight.
When booking your flight, you may need to provide some additional information or documents to verify your student status and eligibility for the discount. These may include:
- Your student ID card or school email address
- Your ISIC card or IYTC card number
- Your UNiDAYS or Student Beans account details
- Your passport or visa details
You should always keep a copy of these information or documents with you when you travel, as you may need to show them at check-in or boarding. If you fail to provide them, you may not be able to use the discount or you may face penalties or fees.
How to make the most of your discounted flights for students?
Once you book your discounted flight for students, you need to make the most of it. Here are some tips and tricks to make your travel experience easier and more enjoyable:
Packing smartly can help you save space, weight, and money when you travel. Here are some packing tips for students:
- Check the baggage allowance of your flight and pack accordingly. You don’t want to pay extra fees for excess baggage or overweight baggage.
- Use a backpack or a carry-on suitcase that fits the size and weight limits of your flight. You don’t want to check in your luggage if you can avoid it, as it may get lost, damaged, or delayed.
- Pack light and only bring the essentials. You don’t need to pack your entire wardrobe or every gadget you own. You can always buy or borrow things at your destination if you need them.
- Pack versatile and comfortable clothes that can be mixed and matched for different occasions and weather conditions. You don’t need to pack a different outfit for every day or every activity.
- Pack travel-sized toiletries and cosmetics that comply with the liquid restrictions of your flight. You don’t need to pack full-sized bottles or jars that take up space and weight.
- Pack some snacks and drinks that can keep you hydrated and energized during your flight. You don’t want to rely on the airline food or pay extra for onboard purchases.
Planning ahead can help you avoid stress, hassle, and waste when you travel. Here are some planning tips for students:
- Research your destination and learn about its culture, history, attractions, transportation, safety, etc. You don’t want to miss out on anything important or offend anyone unintentionally.
- Book your accommodation and transportation in advance and compare prices and options from different sources. You don’t want to waste time and money looking for a place to stay or a way to get around when you arrive.
- Check the visa and vaccination requirements of your destination and apply for them if needed. You don’t want to be denied entry or face health risks when you travel.
- Check the weather forecast of your destination and pack accordingly. You don’t want to be caught off guard by rain, snow, heat, or cold when you travel.
- Make a list of things you want to see and do at your destination and prioritize them according to your interests, budget, and time. You don’t want to miss out on anything exciting or regret anything later.
Being flexible can help you enjoy more opportunities, experiences, and surprises when you travel. Here are some flexibility tips for students:
- Be open-minded and curious about new places, people, cultures, cuisines, etc. You don’t want to be judgmental or closed-minded when you travel.
- Be adaptable and willing to change your plans if needed. You don’t want to be rigid or stubborn when you travel.
- Be spontaneous and ready to try new things if they come up. You don’t want to be boring or afraid when you travel.
Being safe can help you avoid trouble, danger, and harm when you travel. Here are some safety tips for students:
- Be aware of any travel alerts and warnings for your destination and follow the advice of the local authorities. You don’t want to be caught in a political unrest, natural disaster, or health emergency when you travel.
- Familiarize yourself with the customs and local laws of your destination and respect them. You don’t want to offend anyone or break any rules when you travel.
- Protect your passport and other important documents and keep them in a safe place. You don’t want to lose them or have them stolen when you travel.
- Use only authorized taxis or public transportation and avoid hitchhiking or taking rides from strangers. You don’t want to be scammed or kidnapped when you travel.
- Do not carry large amounts of cash or unnecessary identification or credit cards and keep them in a secure place. You don’t want to be robbed or pickpocketed when you travel.
- Do not accept food, drinks, or gifts from strangers or leave your belongings unattended. You don’t want to be drugged, assaulted, or robbed when you travel.
- Make copies of your necessary documentation and leave them with someone you trust at home or online. You don’t want to be stranded without any proof of identity or travel when you travel.
- Register with the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) if you are a U.S. citizen or national traveling abroad. This will help the U.S. Embassy or Consulate contact you in case of an emergency. You can also receive important information about safety conditions in your destination country.
- Stay in touch with your family and friends and let them know your itinerary and contact details. You don’t want to worry them or make them unable to reach you when you travel.
- Be careful with alcohol and drugs and avoid binge drinking or using illegal substances. You don’t want to impair your judgment, health, or safety when you travel.
Traveling as a student can be a rewarding and enriching experience that can broaden your horizons and enhance your education. However, it can also pose some challenges and risks that require careful planning and preparation. By following these tips and advice, you can find the best discounted flights for students and make the most of your travel experience while staying safe and healthy.