Most travelers are conditioned to limit their searches to the nearest major, international airport. There are, however, smaller airports that may be a pretty short drive from home and a less-expensive starting point.
Airports charge airlines usage fees, and smaller airports often charge smaller fees [source: Hobica]. In many cases, that means smaller ticket prices, too. Most travel-booking sites have an option to include these other, nearby airports in your search, and they'll show you flights from both your main choice and any alternative ones.
Of course, even if it costs less to start and end at the "nearby" airport, driving time is key. You don't want to end up cancelling out any savings with the cost of gas, airport parking and your precious time.
Some other "alternates" can save you money, too.