With all the uncertainty that still surrounds international travel due to pandemic protocols that vary from country to country, staying within the United States can be the least stressful option for travelers. And if you can save some big money while traveling close to home, even better!
Our friends at Scott’s Cheap Flights keep doing what they do, digging up some dirt cheap fares. This time they’ve unearthed nonstop cross-country flights that will set you back as little as $137!
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Airline: Alaska Air, American, JetBlue and United
Routes: Multiple departure cities, including SEA/JFK/EWR/PDX/SFO/SLC
Cost: From $137 round-trip for select nonstop routes.
Dates: Book for travel between now and December 2021; Thanksgiving travel excluded
Pay with: The Platinum Card® from American Express for 5x on airfare booked directly with the airline or through American Express Travel (on up to $500,000 on these purchases per calendar year), the Citi Prestige® Card for 5x on airfare, the Citi Premier® Card or Chase Sapphire Reserve for 3x on air travel, the American Express® Gold Card for 3x on airfare when booked directly with the airline or through Amex Travel, or the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card for 2x on travel.
The information for the Citi Prestige Card has been collected independently by The Points Guy. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.
These fares include some incredible bargains for flying from the Pacific Northwest to the East Coast, or if you’re looking to go from NYC to someplace out west. Some of the ticket prices we’re seeing are about one-third of the usual cost of these routes.
The best deals we found going from one coast to another were from New York City (JFK) to Salt Lake City (SLC) and to/from Newark (EWR) – Seattle (SEA). Those routes could be booked for $137.
Because this is JetBlue’s basic economy rate, you don’t get to bring a carry-on bag. Since the first checked bag will cost you $60, if you do need to pack more than a backpack you can upgrade for $50 and get a free full-size carry-on bag.
We found plenty of options to book JFK-SLC seats for $137, especially in October.
(screenshot courtesy of Google Flights)
The Newark-Seattle corridor also offered plenty of options to save big on a fair that typically goes for around $320.
If you’re looking at that 7:00am return flight from Newark and dreading the idea of waking up somewhere in Manhattan at 4:30am to hop in an Uber to make your flight, you could book an afternoon return trip for just $25 more.
Another excellent deal we found was San Francisco to NYC via United for just $153 roundtrip. Again, it’s a basic economy fare so you don’t get the option of a free carry-on bag, but for just $47 you can upgrade one level and get the free carry-on. That’s $23 cheaper than it would cost you to check a bag at the lower fare rate.
Different cities, same low price. Newark to Portland, Oregon is available for $153 nonstop via Alaska Air.
Here’s one other rock-bottom fare we found in October – Los Angeles to Orlando for just $117 roundtrip via United. So if you if you want to head south to enjoy the 50th anniversary celebration of Walt Disney World, this would be a great time to book your trip.
How to book
There are no tricks or special codes needed to find these fares.
If you’re paying with cash, head to Google Flights and plug in your desired departure and destination cities. Then, use the calendar function to find dates and prices that work for you and then click through to book with the airline directly.
Maximize your purchase
Don’t forget to use a card that earns additional points on airfare purchases, such as The Platinum Card from American Express (5x on flights booked directly with airlines or Amex Travel on up to $500,000 on these purchases per calendar year), Chase Sapphire Reserve (3x on air travel), American Express Gold Card (3x on flights booked directly with airlines or Amex Travel), Citi Premier Card (3x on air travel) or the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card (2x on travel purchases). Check out this guide for more on maximizing airfare purchases.
Featured image by Andrew Thomas for Getty Images
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Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.Internet Explorer Channel Network