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The Secret Sauce Behind Scott's Cheap Flights

When friends and family far removed from the travel hacking/cheap flights space ask me about a website, I know its mainstream. While there are many good deal websites out there (The Flight Deal, Secret Flying, and Holiday Pirates are three of my favorites), Scott’s Cheap Flights seems to have broken through where others have not. Over 1 million people get his daily flight deals email. I’m a big fan of the website and their ability to often break airfare deals (I used one of their alerts to fly to South Africa). It turns out Scott is a fan of my website too so we sat down for an interview where I got him to spill the secret behind his website:

Nomadic Matt: Tell everyone about yourself. How did you get into this?
Scott: When I graduated college in 2009, I knew two things: (1) I wanted to travel the world and (2) I was never going to be wealthy. So if I wasn’t going to let #2 prevent #1, I knew I would have to figure out some creative ways to travel without spending my life savings. I began reading up on flight pricing economics, spending hours on various flight search engines, and learning various airfare patterns. Before long, I found an online community of fellow travel hackers and cheap-flight aficionados who enjoy not just travel but also the thrill of getting a great deal on flights.

Where did the idea of this website come from? Scott’s Cheap Flights has a weird origin story. In 2013, I got the best deal of my life: nonstop from NYC to Milan for $130 round-trip. Milan hadn’t even been on my radar as a place to visit, but for $130 round-trip, there’s no way I wouldn’t go. And it turned out to be amazing! I went skiing in the Alps, caught an AC Milan match, hiked Cinque Terre, hung out on Lake Como. It was divine.

When I got back, word spread among friends and coworkers about the deal I got, and dozens of them began asking me to let them know next time I found a fare like that so they could get in on it, too. So rather than try to remember to tell George and Esther and Aviva when a great deal popped up, I decided to start a simple little email list instead so I could alert everyone at once. Scott’s Cheap Flights was born.

Scott founded Scott’s Cheap Flights in a Denver coffeeshop. Scott is the flight searcher-in-chief, spending 8-12 hours a day on Google Flights as well as overseeing daily operations. If you’re looking for flight deals, it’s one of the best.


  1. James Turner

    James Turner

    December 11, 2017

    Great interview. I love a success story, and even more so when the guy still has humility like that. Hadn’t heard of him, but now off to check out his site…I’d like to visit Slovakia (or Greece, Slovenia, ad infinitum) this summer!

    Thanks Matt and Scott!

    • Nomadic Matt


      December 14, 2017

      Those are great deals! Very cool!

  2. Ryan Biddulph

    James Turner

    December 11, 2017

    Scott’s is the best! We scored RT tickets to South Africa from DC for $375 recently and $450 tickets to Bangkok RT from DC a few months before.

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