All of the major airlines offer last-minute weekend airfares
that are often hundreds of dollars cheaper than even advance
purchase restricted fares. The fares often go fast though,
so the key to getting in on the deal you want is to get the
info before everyone else then act fast. The only way to do
this is to get on the email lists for each airline or to visit
the web site of each airline as soon as possible after they
release fares. There are web pages that consolidate the weekend
fares and offer you a one-stop place to view fares from any
of several airlines. (See
Smarter Living's Deal Alert section for the latest travel
deals and weekend airfares.).
These pages might be convenient, but I find them mostly useful
There are two reasons why I think you
need to subscribe directly to each list if you really want
1) Snooze and loose: The consolidated
pages don't go online until Wednesday. Some airlines release
their fares Monday night, or through the course of the day
Tuesday. If you use the consolidated pages, people like me
knew about the fare a day or more earlier and already snapped
up the choice seats, so you're left with the crumbs (if anything).
2) Limited choice: The consolidated web
pages (flyaow in particular) have historically not listed
some of the deals. I've noticed this with regard to foreign
destinations, smaller airlines, and foreign flag carriers.
By subscribing directly, I can see ALL of the available destinations
that an airline offers that week and I'm empowered by more
complete info. In fairness, it looks like smarterliving.com
is fairly complete -- they even included rates for AirTran.
More info is better.