What's the best way these days to set an alert for cheap Japan flights?
January 16, 2020 9:24 PM   Subscribe

My 18 year old nephews want to visit Japan. It's their first trip abroad and I don't want to put them on a dice roll like China Eastern Air. Looks like I just missed a deal - NY to Tokyo on Air Canada - for $491. How can I set a very specific airfare alert (ex: only these airlines, or NOT X airlines and only under X amount of money) for the future?
posted by rileyray3000 to Travel & Transportation around Japan (10 answers total) 13 users marked this as a favorite
You can always set up a basic Kayak search, I’ve had good luck with that in and out of Japan. It’s going to easier to set it up and then manually look for what works. I live about an hour out of Tokyo and I’ve found following The Flight Deal FB page tells me about some really nice deals.
posted by stormygrey at 11:12 PM on January 16, 2020

Not quite sure why you consider China Eastern Air to be a dice roll. Generally the Asian carriers have better service in economy. Also, China doesn't require visa for less than 24 transits. That can allow a overnight quick sta in Beijing Shanghai for the same ticket price.
posted by zeikka at 11:27 PM on January 16, 2020 [6 favorites]

Google "Scotts Cheap Flights" Worth subscribing if you fly a lot.
posted by Patapsco Mike at 5:14 AM on January 17, 2020 [5 favorites]

Seconding Scott's Cheap Flights. One of my friends was able to get to Japan fairly cheaply from Pittsburgh (which is not always easy as it's not actually a major hub) using it. It's $49/year for the Premium version, but that cost is basically recouped in savings on the first super-cheap flight reservation.
posted by helloimjennsco at 6:20 AM on January 17, 2020

Just a heads-up, Scott's does not let you choose destination airports, just departure airports.
posted by underthehat at 6:41 AM on January 17, 2020

Scott's Cheap Flights is a must. I also look at the Flight Deal pretty regularly - you can pick your starting airport, and it shows the deals for that airport. Its hard to set an alert for a specific destination, but with the Olympics coming up, I am sure there will be lots of deals to Japan. Keep in mind that with many of these deals, your nephew should be ready to purchase quickly, as the deals will only last a few days.

I actually set a flight alert for tickets to Tokyo through Google Flights, and was able to get a RT NY to NRT on United for under $700, which I thought was a great deal.
posted by something_witty at 6:56 AM on January 17, 2020 [1 favorite]

I use Momondo and like it. Got a flight from Philadelphia to Haneda for $650.
posted by Automocar at 6:57 AM on January 17, 2020

Google Flights lets you de-select airlines in their search function and has a "track this flight" feature, which will send you an alert if the price goes up or down.

I also pay for Thrifty Traveler Premium which will send you alerts for good deals, but it wouldn't be specific to Japan. You could subscribe and set up a filter in your inbox to make sure you see those deals.
posted by mcgsa at 7:19 AM on January 17, 2020 [1 favorite]

I have AirfareWatchdog.com sending me notices when exceptionally cheap flights to Tokyo pop up for the two closest departure cities. You can't set what it considers to be an unusually cheap flight, but its definition matches mine. The airlines I've seen have generally been US, Canadian, or Japanese carriers (though that might be because of limited flights by other carriers to the locations I have set).
posted by past unusual at 11:44 AM on January 17, 2020

I'm going to Japan in a few months with my son, and I got a good deal on these tickets after subscribing to Scott's Cheap Flights for a few months. Deals come up pretty regularly, but you need to be ready to move when you see them.
posted by bluedaisy at 4:01 PM on January 17, 2020

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