Several airline and trip planning sites will allow you to check "I am flexible with my dates" or a similar option. Is there any way to also search more broadly for location?

For example, if you wanted to leave from YYZ or YKF and arrive at any airport in California, can a search for such flights be done somehow?

I ask because when I plan plane trips, I want the lowest price. I'm OK with leaving a day or two later if I save $200 (same with the return trip). There are 3 airports within 80 km of me, I'll leave from the one with the cheapest flight. And I'm also OK with changing the trip to spend time exploring San Francisco instead of lying on the beach near San Diego, and that sort of thing.

Normally this would take dozens of searches, but I'd like to see it all at once.

  • Are you only interested in US domestic flights or in international sites? You should mention this in your question title. Commented Jul 3, 2011 at 10:59
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    I have found that many such sites are not as "broad" as they would have their users believe. (I was investigating international fares from Australia) I tried the big sites for my current trip and they all gave higher best prices than I had found on my own with Korean Air and did not offer this airline at all! I did a more thorough check later and found two sites that did offer this airline and even beat the price I already paid! So it's best to shop around even for "shopping around" sites! Commented Jul 3, 2011 at 13:04
  • @hippietrail Any good site will be intermational, and my example involved Canada to the US. I had problems with Amadeus below not checking all sites/airlines (even the ones it said it would) but Kayak worked properly, fortunately. Commented Jul 3, 2011 at 14:52
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    Try rome2rio.com Commented May 30, 2014 at 13:44
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    Rome2Rio is a great way to get options. Unfortunately, when it tells you can get from Chicago to Istanbul for $310, it won't tell it you the date. You have to choose a specific date to get a new price.
    – WGroleau
    Commented Jun 9, 2014 at 2:12

11 Answers 11


As a developer of some search engine for the Amadeus (one of the major companies who provides the air-tickets search), I can say:
Yes, you can, but you should find the site working with Amadeus and provides such option to the search. This option is not as popular as flexible-dates-feature, but you still can try to search such sites. I'll do my best to find them:

  • 5
    Hmm, Kayak seems to work much better, oddly enough! It's also very fast, and while it doesn't show +/- 3 days lumped into one search the dropdown is neat. (The remembered prices from previous searches in the drop down are incorrect though ... hmm.) So not perfect, but very good! +1, I'll hold on acceptance to see if there are any other answers. Commented Jun 30, 2011 at 21:06
  • Amadeus sells the search engine, but their search itself is not very usable, unfortunately. It is much easier to sell engine than upgrade usability :)
    – VMAtm
    Commented Jun 30, 2011 at 21:30
  • Hmm, just discovered the option to lump +/- 3 days and other dates into one search. Awesome. This and ITA seem to be equally good. For my next trip I'll attempt to plan with both and see what's more helpful. Commented Jul 3, 2011 at 19:42
  • @VMAtm I'm just curious, is Momondo using Amadeus' services?
    – Adriano
    Commented Jun 25, 2015 at 13:55
  • @AdrienBe Can't say for sure, but I think no, search results are slightly different for them.
    – VMAtm
    Commented Jul 8, 2015 at 15:04

Yes, you can use http://matrix.itasoftware.com - just enter a destination, say LAX, click "Nearby" and pick airports (up to 300mi away I think). However, that's not super interesting as most of those airports are small regional/county airports that don't get mainline carrier service, so you can just enter destination airports (there aren't that many in CA). You can also do this with your departure airport, too.

You can limit by carrier, # of segments, etc.

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    Bing Travel licenses the search technology from ITA, if I remember correctly. Commented Jul 1, 2011 at 16:05
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    ITA Matrix is the most flexible search I found: • Search nearby airports within a given radius & pick specific ones. • View prices for all departures within a 1-month period in a calendar format. • Flexible duration of the trip (within 7 days). • Advanced routing (e.g. connect through or avoid a specific airport). Useful since some airlines allow a free long (say, 1-2 day) stopover on the way back. Matrix user interface is far better than Kayout/Expedia/Orbitz and similar, especially when exploring flexible options (almost like Google Maps vs. Mapquest).
    – dbkk
    Commented Jul 3, 2011 at 8:39
  • Not bad. Seems to have multi-airline combinations for cheaper than Kayak, but you can't purchase directly so I'm assuming that it's not counting some fees. This and Kayak seem to be equally good. For my next trip I'll attempt to plan with both and see what's more helpful. Commented Jul 3, 2011 at 19:40
  • Yeah, unfortunately you cannot book using ITA. You have to go to the airline website or, for multi-airline bookings, something like Expedia, etc. Commented Jul 5, 2011 at 0:24
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    Also ITA Matrix is quite incomplete. There are many flights missing in Europe.
    – feklee
    Commented Apr 4, 2013 at 12:21

I suggest using SkyScanner. On the home page, you will find a link titled 'Calendar' that gives prices between the destinations you want over the time range you choose, giving you a better picture than +/-x days that most other flight search websites have. To broaden area searches, choose a city name and opt for 'any' in the suggestions presented; e.g., in your case enter Toronto (Any).

For booking flights from or within the US, Bing Travel has a 'price prediction' feature that that uses current and historical data to give suggestions on pricing trends. While this is not a 'broad' search per se, it does accomplish the same goal, i.e., help you find cheaper flights.


As of now SkyScanner offers ability to search for fares as broad as country -> destination. For example you can search for tickets from Germany to US based on your dates and other preferences.


As of now one of the options on Skyscanner's destination is "Everywhere" so from a single source point, to basically anywhere in the world.

  • 5
    Was coming in to say the same. You can also just choose 'from London' and dates, and it'll show you the cheapest flights to anywhere, great for planning a long weekend :)
    – Mark Mayo
    Commented Jul 2, 2011 at 14:32
  • Being able to search only airports in a particular city isn't quite broad enough for me. Especially since in the case of Toronto there are very few flights, and even fewer cheap flights, out of the smaller airport. Commented Jul 3, 2011 at 19:17
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    @Matthew: SkyScanner does provide an option similar to that. Choose 'Select from list', select a country, and then leave airport to all. An even better option IMO, that others don't have is, set origin airport to one you want and then destination to 'Anywhere' - great for when you have no fixed plans of travel. Commented Jul 3, 2011 at 22:26
  • Too broad :P I'm sure it would be useful for smaller countries though. Commented Jul 3, 2011 at 23:38
  • When you say "Toronto" does it just check YYZ and the island? Or does it include Hamilton? Or even Buffalo, many folks who live west of the GTA say it's way cheaper through Buffalo. My guess is only the two with Toronto in the name, which won't help much. Commented Apr 6, 2012 at 13:46

Since this thread has become the universal flight search engine thread I want to give a breakdown of all the options mentioned in the other answers:

  • http://matrix.itasoftware.com/ (answer) is the most powerful search tool I know of: multiple departure and destination airports (including nearby functionality), +/- 2 days or departure window with length of stay, multi-leg trips and fare class is shown. No low-cost airlines though and it only constructs itineraries, you need to buy your ticket (hopefully at the same price) at a (online) travel agency.
  • http://www.google.com/flights (answer) is somewhat more usable, also features multiple departure cities, a fare matrix by days and many more filtering options. They link to diverse booking websites, including low-cost airlines
  • http://adioso.com/ (answer) has very broad search options both geographically (continent, country, state, ...) and in time (e.g. date range, month)
  • https://www.kayak.com/flights (answer) shows flexible dates (based on previous and stored searches, i.e. redo the price for another date as it might not be accurate) and allows for multiple departure/destination airports as well as to include nearby cities
  • https://www.hipmunk.com/ (answer) similar allows search over up to three days and multiple departure/destination airports
  • www.skyscanner.com (answer) instead allows for e.g. countries but no overview over different days

The following two sites use mainly low-cost carriers including non-guaranteed connections but have great play in location and departure:

  • http://www.azair.com/ (answer) has the most powerful search options I have ever seen: multiple departure/destination airports (but no multi-leg search), departure period, length of stay and preferred weekdays!
  • https://kiwi.com/ circle departure/destination in on a map, date range and has some kind of "promise" to help you if you miss a non-guaranteed connection (formerly "Skypicker")

I could not make out a search option of multiple departure/destinations or at the following sites that have been proposed:


  • 2
    Kayak absolutely does have geographic flexibility, and I don't see the use in duplicating the information in less detail. Commented Feb 11, 2016 at 20:58
  • @MatthewRead thanks for commenting and pointing out my mistake on Kayak, I edited. I found the load of other answers too-much-info to navigate and an overview, at least for me, extremely helpful. I see your point about duplicate information though so and will ask on Meta.
    – mts
    Commented Feb 12, 2016 at 9:31
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    – mts
    Commented Feb 12, 2016 at 9:47

This site seems no longer available.

Adioso allows you to search for flights with natural language queries like "Australia to Europe in early June" .

This is the only service that I know that can do this. Their prices are from a combination of their own data + Priceline + Cheapoair.

  • 3
    Adioso allows you to be vague about your destination and dates, but insists on a specific city for the origin. Skyscanner, as already mentioned, is another. And there's Rome2Rio, which will also show you bus and train and ferry options. One flaw with Rome2Rio is that if they show you a good price, you have to pick a specific date to get the details. And you can't enter "whatever date that price is on." :-)
    – WGroleau
    Commented Jun 22, 2014 at 1:30
  • Adioso seems to be dead now. Sad.
    – Suncatcher
    Commented Aug 19, 2022 at 22:44

Beyond the options already listed, azair has very powerful search options (see the advanced options), including choice of return and departure day, length of stay, period within which the trip should happen and a range of departure and arrival airports.

enter image description here

A similarly powerful search option is kiwi.com, which also offers "to anywhere" as a search option, and has options for specific dates, date range or time-to-stay.

enter image description here



Select the "See calendar of lowest fares" option, and select the start of your range.

You'll have to do a month at a time, but it's easy to change the date once you've look at each month.

It's possible to specify options like which airline(s), how many stops, etc, but it's a little complex. If you click on the ? next to the "Enter Routing Codes" box you'll find the details on how to you need to specify what you're after.

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    There's already an answer to this question which mentions the matrix airfare search, but yours have some extra info. Care to edit that answer and include that, and remove your answer? Commented Apr 3, 2013 at 15:26
  • out of curiosity, was it always that ITA didn't allow to specify many countries in origing or this limitation came recently imgur.com/a/AQGXGne
    – Suncatcher
    Commented Aug 20, 2022 at 15:51

The Swedish company Svenska Resenätverket AB has a very handy website that searches for flights offered by its partner travel agencies:



More often than not, prices are cheaper than what you'd be able to find using other search tools like the ITA matrix, or what the airlines offer for the same fare at their websites.

The results are sorted by price, and you can see available flight times between destinations to adjust to your needs. As per EU consumer protection rules, the fare that you see is the fare that you pay (unless the airline charges extra for optional services like checked baggage, for example).

You can be quickly redirected to the travel agency that sells the particular ticket, and for most sites, the travel reservation will be prepared for you with your search data, waiting for you to fill in the remaining details before payment.

I travel mainly in Europe, and the results are consistently very good. I can't comment how well it works when both destinations are outside Europe, though.

Sadly, currently it's not possible to search for +/- days within the specified date.

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    +/- days or at least nearby locations is the whole point of my question, so I have to downvote this. The prices do seem very slightly better, though with currency conversion not so much. Commented Apr 4, 2012 at 22:12
  • @mindcorrosive The UK link doesnt seem to be active anymore
    – Simon
    Commented Apr 3, 2013 at 16:38
  • how can you switch that site to English, and to another currency? Commented Apr 3, 2013 at 17:04
  • @KateGregory: Sadly, that's no longer possible. It's mostly suitable for travellers from or currently living in Scandinavian countries. Commented Apr 3, 2013 at 17:55

Google started the ticket selling for air-travel, and you can search the nearby airports (works currently only for US):enter image description here

  • @Roflcoptr Video player site.
    – VMAtm
    Commented Sep 14, 2011 at 18:24
  • 1
    @Roflcoptr They bought it, didn't implement it.
    – VMAtm
    Commented Sep 14, 2011 at 18:30
  • They probably bought this too. They acquire tons of small companies as well as a few big ones. By the way it seems to only support the US for now. Even "London" comes up as "unavailable". Commented Sep 14, 2011 at 18:50
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    Google didn't do this flight search either, they just straight out bought ITA Software. Commented Sep 14, 2011 at 19:45
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    What about Google Video, wasn't that their own creation? Anyways, I'll be sure to check this out :P Commented Sep 15, 2011 at 15:06

Hipmunk now allows for multiple origin/destination searching for airports located in the same country and timezone.

Simply input: SFO, LAX, SAN for San Francisco, Los Angeles, and San Diego.

  • Hipmunk was shut down on January 23, 2020.
    – user4188
    Commented Oct 6, 2022 at 18:48

Another option with +/- 3 days is Cheap-O Air. I'm not sure if it uses one of the other engines underneath but the results seem to be a bit different from others I've tried and the prices are pretty good.

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