There is a great debate on what steps need to be taken to bring down the cost of airfare to and from Europe.
First rule of saving money is flexability. Traditionally, if you travel plan on traveling sometime between the second week of May through September, you can always expect to pay more. Be flexible with your travel dates and you just might get a better deal. February, March and November are the cheapest months of the year to travel.
Secondly, start pricing airfare sometime between 8 to 10 weeks before you actually want to depart. Departing on either a Tuesday or Wednesday and returning on a Tuesday also usually help with lowering your total price.
Your destination will also play a significant role in the total cost. Paris and Rome equals higher rates. Always keep track of airport taxes and other hidden fees.
Lastly, low cost carrier such as Air Berlin, Air Europa and Aer Lingus might have better pricing. Don't rule these out when looking for airfare to Europe.
Recently, Travel and Leisure Magazine reported that low cost carrier, Norwegian Air will be having specials from Ft. Lauderdale, Los Angeles, and New York, that are incredibly cheap. You might want to look into those flights as well.