There are “mistake deals” where the fare is too cheap to “be real” (but are sometimes honored). And then there are really good deals that are intended. That’s what’s going on right now.
There are some good deals to Europe right now for around $400.
For example,United – $493: Washington D.C. – Paris, France. Roundtrip, including all Taxes
United – $461: Newark – Amsterdam, Netherlands. Roundtrip, including all Taxes
I subscribe to the Flight Deals tweets and check them pretty often. I may have booked deals during work meetings. (If my boss is reading this, disregard the last sentence).
I can jump on fares when there’s still lots of availability and I don’t miss out on the deals I want to take advantage of.
I’ve shared my process of “subscribing” to great fares.
This process involves signing up for twitter. Even if you won’t be an active user of twitter, it’s a good idea to have an account to take advantage of deals on contests in general.
I recommend following them even if you aren’t in those areas because they are gateway cities. There’s a lot of good international deals–worth the effort flying out to the gateway.