2023 has been a year of high prices, inflation, and economic uncertainty.
The holidays are a busy time for traveling as people go on vacations to use their extra time off, visit family and friends, and take trips with their families.
They are a time to come together with loved ones, and who doesn’t like coming together in a scenic location or at their childhood home?
Traveling during the holidays can be hectic as the airports get crowded, money gets tight, and plans have to be made. Figuring out when and how to book airfare can be an added stress, as you want to get the best deal but also want to be able to plan your trip.
To get the best deal, flights should not be purchased within a month to a month and a half before your flight. Prices usually rise a lot for last-minute flights, so you are unlikely to get a better deal by waiting. There are a few airlines that will give you a good price a few weeks before your trip, and you’ll likely pay less if you book in advance
The reason airlines increase the price so much for last-minute flights is that they know that they have customers who need to be somewhere, such as people traveling for emergencies or business. These travelers will pay as much as they need to make it to their destination. If you are not in this group, there is no reason to pay high prices for the same flight just because you waited too long.
The best time to buy your flights for trips within your country is 45 days to 2 months in advance. This is when you will get the best deal. If you’re not a fan of economic seats, you can always try to get a first class upgrade without breaking your budget.
Is there a best day of the week to book airfare?
There were rumors that if you purchased a flight at 12:01 am on Tuesday, you would be saving big. However, this is not factual, and airfare prices remain fairly constant. Buying a flight on a Tuesday, Wednesday, or Thursday instead of a weekend will only be about 1.9% less on average.
During the week, airlines have both employees and algorithms working on pricing, which means that there is some more fluctuation in costs. You might check in the morning and see that the flight is slightly cheaper than it was the night before. However, there is no real way to tell when the flight will be the cheapest, and the shifts are generally minor.
With the greater changes in prices during the week, prices could go up or down, so it is still difficult to decide when the best time is to make your purchase.
The best day of the week to book flights is whenever you see the best deal. You cannot and should not constantly monitor every airline to see how the prices are changing. Check once or twice a day and when you see something you like, make the purchase.
Is there a best day to travel?
The day that you buy your tickets is far less important than the actual day that you plan to travel. Certain days are much busier than others, and with the greater demand, prices will rise as well.
With the holidays coming up, finding the right day to travel is extremely important. The top days when people fly are Monday, Thursday, Friday, and Sunday. These days, they will be more expensive because the demand is greater and they are more popular.
If you are flexible with your travel dates, you can save a lot of money by traveling on a Tuesday, Wednesday, or Saturday. There are even tons of cheap city breaks you can catch right now that won’t break your bank. . Additionally, traveling closer to a holiday may be busier than travelling further out, so this is also a factor to consider when making travel arrangements.
Outside of major holidays and summer, the cheapest times to travel are typically late April to early June and late August to early October. When planning a vacation for leisure, traveling during these periods will get you the most savings.
Picking your travel day is one of the best ways to save money when buying flights. Having flexible plans can help you find a great deal on airfare.
A fun way to be flexible with your travel plans is to be flexible about where you are going. Stasher’s city guides can give you some great inspiration for different places to go. Certain destinations will have much cheaper airfare and accommodations at various points in the year, so this is a great way to save money and go somewhere new and exciting!
When to book flights for international travel in 2023-2024
Booking flights for international travel can be tricky in a year with so much financial uncertainty. Airfare has risen in price significantly in 2023 and will likely stay high going into 2024.
If you see a good deal on an international flight, chances are that it will not last long, so it is smart to purchase it once you see it.
However, future prices are never guaranteed. If you book too early, you may end up spending more on a flight than if you waited longer. However, waiting too long might leave you with a worse deal. There is no sure way to tell when the price will be the lowest, so if you see a price you like and believe that it is the best you will find, you should book your tickets.
You should book international airfare 2 to 6 months in advance to get the best deal. You can start to look at flights 11 months in advance of your departure day, so you can look very early and purchase the flights once you see the best deal. This will generally fall within the 2 to 6-month range for international flights.
Do flight prices go down on Tuesday?
Many times, if you ask someone when the best day to purchase a flight is, they’ll tell you Tuesday. Tuesday is supposed to be the cheapest day to buy a flight, but that is not necessarily true. While flight prices may happen to go down on a Tuesday, it is not a rule of thumb that is consistent or reliable.
This rumor used to have some truth in it, but it no longer does. What that means is that you should check flight prices throughout the week. With the high flight prices in 2023, especially as the holidays get closer, if you see a good deal on a flight, it is wise to purchase it regardless of what day of the week it is.
The Tuesday myth is an interesting one because people often claim that it is true because they got a great deal on a Tuesday. Next time they get a great deal on a Wednesday, they often don’t think about it and continue to tell the story of that awesome Tuesday.
Flight prices can definitely go down on a Tuesday, so continue to check. However, don’t forget to check on Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday as well. Consistently checking the prices is one of the best ways to find a great deal.
What day of the week is the best time to book a flight?
The best day and time to book your flight vary. However, the best days to fly are Tuesday, Wednesday, or Saturday. Those days are less busy travel days, which means that you will have an easier time at the airport as well as pay a lower fare.
Rather than the day of booking, it is more important how far in advance you book your flight. The date and time of booking are only relevant in regards to how far away it is from your actual departure date.
When you see a deal that you like, it is smart to just book it. This is partially luck and partially following your gut instinct. Sometimes, you may have gotten a slightly better deal if you had bought it at a different point. However, you may have also gotten the best deal possible!
Dwelling on airfare costs for too long will lead to you not even being excited about your trip anymore. Once you get a deal that you are happy with, even if it isn’t the best deal possible, you can relax! No more constant checking, constant stressing, and waking up at odd hours to see if the price dropped by a couple of dollars.
Do flight prices go down in the evening?
Flight prices do not go down in the evening any more than they go down in the morning. Flight prices can fluctuate throughout the day, and there is no set rule on how the prices change throughout the day.
If you see a great deal and do not have time to consult with your travel buddy or work before you purchase it, do not worry. In the United States, any flight that you book directly through the airline can be canceled within 24 hours for a full refund, which means that you have 24 hours after purchase to finalize your plans.
In 2022, many airlines will allow you to cancel or change flights for free, so oftentimes, you will have the right to change your plans later on without losing your money. You may be given a voucher or a full refund in exchange.
In the worst case, if you buy a flight and later discover that it is far cheaper now, you can change your flight. You may be given a voucher worth the value of the difference between the costs for each flight. This might be something to consider if you have no future trips planned, as you might lose this money if you do not use the voucher. However, some airlines provide a full refund, in which case you lose nothing from booking early.
When should I book a flight to get the best price?
Unfortunately, there is no set rule to get the best price on a flight. You should book the flight when you see a price that you are happy with.
To get the best price that is reasonable, you should consistently check various airlines to get a general idea of how much flights to your destination will cost. If you see a price that is lower than usual, you should definitely purchase it!
Once you book your flight, you no longer have to stress about finding the best deal and saving the most money. Instead, you can focus on planning your trip and making sure that everyone has tons of fun.
Booking flights can be stressful, and in 2023 it has been more difficult than usual. While there are many guesses and theories about how to get the best deal possible, the only real way is to book your flight when you see a price that works for you.
After COVID-19, many airlines became a lot more flexible with rescheduling and cancelling flights. These policies are still largely in place today, which means that you have a higher degree of flexibility when you plan your trips. If something goes wrong with your plans, you will likely be able to get your money back in the form of a refund or voucher.
Flexibility will allow for a great sense of relief when making a large purchase, such as buying plane tickets. This can be a large, daunting expense that is made easier when you know that if things go differently from how you planned them, everything will be okay.
How to Find Good Deals on Flights
There are many websites out there whose entire purpose is to find you great deals on flights. These are called online travel agencies, and some popular examples are Expedia, Priceline, Sky Scanner, and Kayak. While these websites may be convenient, they aren’t necessarily the way to get the cheapest flights.
Each of these websites purchases flights from the airlines that they then resell on their websites. Sometimes they are cheaper than they would be direct from the airline, but other times the price is higher.
Google Flights is a great tool to compare many different airlines at once. It allows you to book directly with the airline, which often gives you additional savings and perks such as points that can later be redeemed for plane tickets.
Every airline has different offers, and they may not all go to your destination. They will all have different prices, so it is important to compare various airlines instead of sticking with the same one every time you travel. However, certain airlines offer loyalty rewards, so if that is important to you, it is worth consideration.
Buying straight from the airline may not seem like the best deal, especially when online travel agencies market themselves as having the cheapest flights and best prices. These websites do occasionally have truly excellent deals, but most of the time you will save more money by purchasing directly from the airline on strategic dates.
When to Book Flights During the Holidays
While airfare tends to be more expensive during the holidays, this is also the time when you most likely want to travel. There are many great reasons to travel during the holidays, and during this time when your budget is tight, finding a good deal can be more important than ever.
If possible, traveling early in December or late in January can save you a lot. However, when this is impossible, you can use some tips to find the cheapest tickets.
The lowest airfare around the Thanksgiving holiday tends to be 36-74 days before the departure date, with an average of 52 days before. You should search in this range and purchase once you see the best deal that makes sense for you.
For Christmas, domestic flights have the lowest prices between 20-88 days before the holiday. Searching in this range will help you find the best deal. While it will still be more expensive than less popular times of the year, you can still save big by finding the cheapest flights possible. More savings means more money in your pocket to celebrate the holiday!
If possible, your departure and return dates should fall on a Tuesday, Wednesday, or Saturday for the cheapest prices. These days are when it is cheapest to travel, and you could find yourself making some significant savings if you book on these days. Even if you just depart or return on one of these days as opposed to another day of the week, you should notice some savings.
If you have miles or reward points, you can use those in advance to get a decent deal on your flight. You may even pay the same amount as you would during the less busy parts of the year. Miles and reward points can come in handy when the price tag seems too high on a flight.
The holidays are meant to be a happy time, and sometimes, seeing the price points on flights can dampen that. Once you purchase your flights, you can focus on having fun and planning your trip. Setting aside a budget to purchase flights can ease the burden once you are purchasing them, and it is a great financial strategy to use.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
1) When is the best time to book a flight for the cheapest prices?
This question is about finding the optimal time to make flight reservations to secure the most affordable fares.
2) Is it true that booking flights on a certain day of the week is cheaper?
Many people believe that certain days of the week offer better deals for booking flights. This question seeks to clarify if there’s any truth to that notion.
3) How far in advance should I book my flight to get the best price?
Travelers often wonder how early they should plan their flights to obtain the most cost-effective options. This question addresses the ideal booking window.
4) Are last-minute flight deals really a good way to save money?
Some travelers think that booking flights at the last minute can lead to significant cost savings. This question explores whether that’s a viable strategy.
5) Do flight prices change based on the time of day I book my ticket?
This question delves into the idea that flight prices may fluctuate depending on the time of day a ticket is purchased, and whether there’s an ideal time for booking.