Suggestions for cheap last minute NYC to Europe flights?
January 22, 2016 7:55 AM   Subscribe

Short of Priceline, are there any ways to regularly get cheap last-minute airfares to Western/ Central Europe for a single traveler? I have a job that sometimes allows me to work remotely, and I'd love to leverage that by hopping off to Europe every so often. I'd be happy to fly on last-minute notice, without a lot of luggage. I have relatively easy access to EWR and JFK.

My only limitation is that the flight take less than 12 hours, so I can get off work one day, get on a flight, and be ready for work the next. Europe is east of NYC, so I lose some hours in the time zones as well, but I can afford to spend more time in the air coming home because I gain time going west.

I'm reluctant to use Priceline because their low fares often involve layovers, which means I could get on a flight in NYC, and not be online in time for work when I arrive.

I'm particularly interested in Paris, London, Berlin and Frankfurt as I have friends there that I'd like to see more regularly. Right now, I've been paying roughly $600 to $900 for tickets to travel.

There used to be courier services that offered tickets in this manner, but I don't see much about them anymore. Does anyone have any ideas? Do they still exist? Thanks!
posted by Borborygmus to Travel & Transportation (11 answers total) 37 users marked this as a favorite
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posted by zeikka at 7:57 AM on January 22, 2016

WOWAir out of Iceland has pretty cheap flights, although they're a no-frills airline. They have frequent sales of $159 each way. They don't seem to fly out of New York, but they fly out of both Boston and BWI, so you could take the train.
posted by kevinbelt at 7:59 AM on January 22, 2016 [3 favorites]

Kayak Explore will show you flights to anywhere from NYC that are under 11 hours. Drag the viewing area over to Europe and pick a month. I see a $511 trip Shannon and $610 to Belfast in February.
posted by soelo at 8:15 AM on January 22, 2016 [2 favorites]

I'm a big fan of Momondo for flights in general. Not sure how they are with last-minute deals but you may find something!
posted by smorgasbord at 8:20 AM on January 22, 2016

Seconding WOWAir.

Also Norwegian Airlines and Aer Lingus.
posted by vacapinta at 8:39 AM on January 22, 2016

TravelZoo's Last Minute Travel Deals might be what you're looking for.
posted by jillithd at 8:46 AM on January 22, 2016

Iceland air has a super cheap ($300ish) to London via Reykjavik. While you are in Reykjavik, you can take a layover for no extra charge to explore this wonderland
posted by radsqd at 8:54 AM on January 22, 2016 [2 favorites]

Turkish Airlines has a lot of cheap flights to Central Europe from New York.
posted by blob at 8:58 AM on January 22, 2016

Also I just booked flight to Vienna for $550 rt from EWR. Vienna is a pretty central destination to explore Europe through trains.
posted by radsqd at 9:01 AM on January 22, 2016

I am a fan of old school Itamatrix. They are now owned by Google so theoretically you get the same info from Google flights. Note that this is just a starting point and you need to go somewhere else to purchase. You can go to the airline indicated or use your favorite online travel agency.
There is a lot behind this simple page.
I entered NYC as departure (and All Airports popped up as an option) and Berlin (as an example) as destination. I clicked on “Nearby” and set it to search all airports within 300 miles.
I set “Dates” to “See calendar of lowest fares” (March 1 and one month later). I set “Length of stay” for 13- 15 days.
I set “Stops” option to Nonstop only.
They currently show something on March 16 for $510.
Let’s look at that… It says that Norwegian Air Shuttle is flying JFK to CPH nonstop for $510.
I do a search for Norwegian Air Shuttle… When I look on their website I find that when I click through most of the way using the dates I found, it looks like the price is actually $410.60. Round trip and non-stop and they claim it is the total price including taxes.
I check this daily when I want to dream, and just yesterday booked Amsterdam to Chicago for €442 later in March.
Good luck!
posted by Tunierikson at 11:08 AM on January 22, 2016 [3 favorites]

Hipmunk is pretty good, lets you set requirements and get fare alerts.
posted by the man of twists and turns at 3:33 PM on January 22, 2016

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