Booking flights can sometimes be extremely stressful, especially when you have no idea when a good time to book your flight is. There are a couple tricks to booking flights if you are looking to find the best prices. I have done my fair share of searching airlines, comparing prices, and using different apps to see what days, times, and months are the best times to travel. Although there is no real science to this, I have made notes on things to look for when I do decide to purchase a plane ticket. I am always keeping my eyes peeled for different deals, and I get notifications all of the time for different low fares (which is great to do as well!). Here are a few tips for finding the cheapest days to fly and getting the best deals on your airfare.
1. Shop on Tuesday
Best day to shop: The best time to book a U.S. flight is usually Tuesday at about 3 p.m. This is mainly due to the fact that a lot of different airlines will release their weekly sales early on Tuesdays. Once the different airlines release their weekly sales, competing airlines tend to price match their competitors. If you are looking to find a great deal, Tuesdays are usually the best days to book in my personal opinion.
2. Compare Airlines
This is always an important rule of thumb when it comes down to researching the best deals and times to fly. Although rumors have been around for years that prices raise once you begin searching on different sites simultaneously– I highly suggest checking on one site first and then clearing the cookies on your computer. I am also large on certain apps on my phone that update me when prices drop below normal for flights to certain destinations I have my eye on. One major thing to always keep in mind as well is that a lot of cities have more than one airport you can fly into, it may not always be the most convenient (check how far it is from where you are staying first!) but it could be the cheaper option.
3. Wait for the Right Moment
Take your time and always do your research before buying your plane tickets. Just like anything that is an investment, you always want to make sure you are getting the best bang for your buck. Purchasing your airline tickets too prematurely or too close to the date of departure have proven to be some of the most expensive times to buy. A lot of the time you may end up paying twice as much or maybe even more.
U.S. Plane Ticket Sweet Spot: The best deals for purchasing tickets within the United States has been proven to be approximately 3 weeks to 4 months prior to your departure.
International Flights Sweet Spot: If this is your first time purchasing an international plane ticket do not be alarmed, these tickets are typically more expensive than your domestic tickets. Try to start checking for prices about 5 months out and 1 month prior to your departure. I also suggest signing up for price drops on different sights so that you can also be alerted immediately when sales are occurring.
Holiday/Summer/Spring Break Travel Buy Hack: Holidays are and will always be peak travel times. During these times airlines love to raise their prices because they know regardless people will be purchasing tickets. There is however a better time to purchase during these peak travel times, that time being 2 months in advance. Another good thing to look into if you are just trying to get a cheaper flight is to take a flight with a layover. Please be sure if you do choose a flight with a layover option that you have time to make it to your connecting flight!
4. Discount Days
You may notice that if you go and look at a flight calendar random days like Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Saturdays will always be cheaper regardless if you are leaving or returning. Although no one wants to return on a Saturday if you are going somewhere like Las Vegas, these 3 days have proven time and time again to be the cheapest flight days. The same goes for international flights, weekdays have proven to be much cheaper days to fly on.
5. Seasonal Savings
This is similar to holiday booking, however each season has a sweet spot as well.
Winter: 60-65 days in advance.
Spring: 80-95 days in advance.
Summer: 40-50 days in advance.
Fall: 60-75 days in advance.
Safe travels my friends!