This year, approximately 3.8 billion passengers will use airlines as a means of transportation. Whether you’re traveling on vacation, flying for work, or any other reason you might board a plane, there are certain aspects of the experience that can be less pleasant than others. While events transpire that are out of our control, there are still some best practice steps that you can take to make sure that, on your end, everything runs smoothly. Here are a few insider airline tips that can help you best prepare for your next flight.

Know the difference between “nonstop” and “direct” flights.

  • On the surface, the two sound relatively synonymous, but there’s actually quite a large difference. Nonstop flights mean that when you step foot on the plane, the next stop will be your destination. Direct flights will take you to your destination without transferring to a new flight, but that doesn’t mean there won’t be stops along the way. Direct flights can stop at other airports along their route, and while these stops are planned and accounted for, any incurring delays won’t be. As a general rule of thumb, whenever able book nonstop flights.

Always look for deals on flights.

  • Flying is expensive, but you can reduce a lot of the costs and end up saving yourself some money by doing your homework before booking your ticket. There are many websites out there that will help you find the cheapest airfare for your trip and the cheapest airlines to use. Also, double check the cost of flying round-trip against the cost of purchasing two one-way tickets (to and from your destination); while some sites that book flights will do this for you, not all will, and it can save you some money.

Clear your browser history when ticket shopping.

  • Just like you’re trying to spend the least amount possible on tickets, airlines want you to spend the most. That’s why sites use “dynamic pricing” to determine ticket costs: essentially, if you keep refreshing a page hoping the ticket prices will drop, you’ll likely see the exact opposite happen as the airline raises ticket prices based on how often you’ve viewed their site. While you should definitely shop around to find the best deal, make sure you clear your browser cache before returning to any sites.