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Best-kept travel secret: How to get the cheapest flights in Australia

Fat Mum Slim /

How to get the cheapest flights {within Austrlaia} on the internet

I’ve only just been bitten by the travel bug. Up until about two years ago I was one of those people that was happy exploring my own backyard, with an annual road trip thrown in and a few weekends away added to the mix as well. I guess that’s more than some people {Mum, I’m looking at you!}, but it wasn’t really until I ventured overseas that I realised that there is so much of this world that I want to see and explore, and some of that is in our very own backyard too, the lovely Australia.

But there’s something I don’t like about traveling, and that’s paying crazy prices for flights. I want to save as much money as I can on getting to the destination so I can indulge in a cocktail or two {once the baby is here, of course!}, or a little shopping here or there. You know what I’m talking about, right?

As well as getting the travel bug in the past few years, my family and I have also made a big change from the City to the Country. It means that we’re away from family, and friends, and all the good stuff that comes from living in the City {oh you know, the good food, the vibe, the fun stuff, and most of all, being in the middle of the action}. It also means that each year we’re spending a big bit  of our budget to get back down to Sydney to see the people we adore {and eat the food we just can’t get in our new home, and yes you just can’t know what I mean unless you’ve made the big move yourself. I’m not obsessed, I promise}. Depending on the time of year, and how disorganised we are, the flights can be almost affordable {around $120 per person return} to utter-nonsense {around $300+ per person return}.

But I’ve recently stumbled across a little secret. It’s one of those secrets that’s almost too good to share, in case the sharing of the secret puts a stop to the good stuff. And by good stuff I mean totally INSANE flight prices. So, if by sharing this it means that there are no more cheap prices and I have to go back to paying UTTERLY RIDICULOUS prices to fly back to my former-home, I’m sorry. Sorry to me, my budget and anyone else who used to do this sneaky business too.

It’s also too good NOT to share. So here goes. I found out through a friend of a friend that if you go to a foreign Expedia site to buy your flights you save money. And not just a little. Last month I flew to Sydney return from the Gold Coast for $65. I’ve seen them for $45 too. Crazy.

Here’s how you do it:

1. Go to {the Japanese Expedia site}.

2. Yes, it’s all in Japanese. So go up to the top right corner and click English {next to the Twitter icon}. Much better, right?

3. Choose your flights and dates.

4. Eeek. The prices are in Yen. That’s cool. Use a currency conversion tool to convert it into Australia dollars {or where ever you’re from}. This isn’t exact, but it was almost spot on for me.

5. Choose your flights and purchase them. Some credit cards won’t work. My Visa did. I incurred a $1 fee PLUS the flight costs. I also signed up to Expedia Japan so I could get my itinerary, I suggest doing the same although you will receive an email confirmation from Jetstar and Expedia.

→Buying flights this way worked for me, and I did so knowing that I was taking a risk. Of course, if you decided to do the same you would be taking your own risk too {i.e. when buying anything online it’s not like buying in person}. You should make your own decisions, as anyone should when buying products and services online.
→This is for Jetstar flights only.
→It appears that domestic flights, within Australia, are reduced but when I researched international flights they didn’t impress me as much. You might need to do a bit of exploring to find more.
→The price is for a starter fare only, which means no baggage – only carry-on. I don’t know if it’s possible to add baggage, so this is something you’d need to explore.
→For more tips and comments on this deal, you can read this post here.

Let’s talk bargains! Aside from this deal, the cheapest flight I’ve ever purchased was a $6 return flight to the Gold Coast and back from Sydney. What’s the best travel bargain you’ve ever snapped up?