Must-know airfare hacks to find top summer vacation deals

ABC News' consumer correspondent Becky Worley breaks down some of the best strategies for booking low-cost summer airline tickets.
2:33 | 04/19/19

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Transcript for Must-know airfare hacks to find top summer vacation deals
think about summer vacation and that means getting the best bank for flights and Becky Worley has the details. Reporter: If you're like a working mom of a 7 week old, getting your summer travel planned is a major feat. We'll fly to the west coast to visit both sets of grandparents. Reporter: Vanessa, her husband and three kids are traveling from San Francisco to New York to visit family, then a quick stop in Boston before heading home to California. Like all of us, she wants to find a good deal. Normally I look at somewhere around 500 per ticket. Reporter: Luckily, Elaine of the "New York Times" is out with a guide to airfare hacks and she'll show Vanessa some of the strategies. That's a great way to start to play with different airfares. Reporter: Elaine has Vanessa search for the city, not the specific airport. It looks like you're traveling to New York, Boston, San Francisco, all have alternative airports and those can really save you money. Reporter: Don't be afraid to go out on one airline and back on another carrier, what experts call a hacker fair. Does the day you search for and buy the ticket matter? It's not the day that you actually do the search. It's the day that you travel. It's the Tuesday departure and the Saturday return. That's what matters. Reporter: Because fewer people are traveling these days, you're able to get a better deal. Also, how far out to purchase? Elaine says generally the rule is to buy around 60 days in advance. So if you look three months out, you're probably going to see a pretty high fare. Reporter: Back to Vanessa. With some of the Elaine's tricks -- I basically got your round trip down to 380 on two different airlines. Reporter: A total of $480 saved with a few smart hacks. Now, some of these tips are a tradeoff of time and money so you have to weigh what's best for your family. But I was surprised to learn it's not all about taking flights with layovers. Those are only on average 5% cheaper than nonstops. Now, another thing to add, if 60 days out is the optimal time to book a flight, that means today would be a good time to book for that mid June vacation. Of course, there's an exception, George, holidays. A study of fares by cheap air says their cheapest is 90 days in advance. Got to think ahead. Becky, thanks very much. When we come back, we have

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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