Best Travel Tip of 2015

Once upon a time, I needed to buy a one-way ticket from Auckland to Los Angeles.

I looked high and low throughout the airfare kingdom, searching Delta, United, JetBlue, Expedia, Travelocity and on and on. I tried my preferred dates, alternate dates and worst-case-scenario dates.

After searching near and far, I was finally ready to settle for a $600 ticket.

Then, like a long-awaited fairy godmother, Stephanie Rosenbloom appeared with her magic wand — her travel column for The New York Times — and changed my vagabond life.

Her go-to farecasting tool? Google Flights.

It was love at first sight.

Just like everything Google, the interface it remarkably straightforward.  You can see an entire month of pricing in one glance:

You can also see the prices displayed as a bar graph:

No more testing different dates to find the best price. One glance shows that leaving a day early saves cash.  If you miss these nuances, the tool gives price-saving tips:

You can also explore prices at surrounding airports.  Perhaps you wonder if San Diego is a cheaper destination than LA?  Your prince charming, Google Flights, will tell you:

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Finally, you can also filter your search by number of stops, airlines, flight duration, connecting airports and more.

It's basically a fairytale come true.

The happy ending to my search for the NZ to LA ticket?

When I wished upon a star (plugged my search into Google Flights)  the lowest price glowed in a soothing green.  $275.