Okay, I think I am in a good position here.
From January 2008 - June 2008 I can travel anywhere I want at any time. And I don't really care where I go as long as it isn't North America (I live in Toronto).
So, would skimming through last minute plane tickets every once in a while during those few months be a cheap way to travel? How low do you think these last minute plane tickets can go?
Or would it be better if I flew normally to a cheap part of Europe, and backpacked my way across it?
Cheap air tickets dont really exist anymore as a last minute thing so to speak (does that make sense?). If you want a cheap late deal then its best to book a package deal. to get the best airfares it is nowadays best to book as early as you can and to be flexible with the day, time, etc.
Blooming plane tickets cost a fortune...
I'm flying to Bardon Bardon airport with some friends on a school inset day not to far in the future and the tickets are costing me squat, I think it was something like £30 with Ryanair.
However, I want to go to the St. Andrews University open day, and flying from London (don't care which airport) to Dundee the tickets are £139, with Air France (someone want to tell me why the flight is with Air France?!), flying to other nearby Scottish airports isn't much cheaper...
Thomas Cook Travel in London had great deals on last minute package holidays. This was in the 90's. Not sure they still do this. The UK members can chime in. One week on Tenerife, air & room for $150. It is always double occupancy on package deals. You will need a companion to get a great deal. I was really last minute. In a Thomas Cook office at noon, left at 6:00pm that night for the Canaries. That is last minute!
Another option is to try 'priceline.com'. Decide where you want to go and make on offer. Make it really low, say $100. They will turn it down, but will make a counter offer. Go from there. Last idea is to join 'skyauction.com'. Free to join, then look at package deals and make a bid. Make sure you read all the way down to see what taxes and extras are added. That can make a good deal average when you add the extras.
Good luck on your low cost quest.