Best Time to Book Airlines tickets
Travel Tips

When is the Best Time to Book Airlines tickets

March 27, 2019 Nency Willims 0Comment

Whiling on a plan doesn’t help, budget traveling requires thoughtful advance planning to make big savings. Flying an international vacation spot doesn’t come cheap and people save for it for long and then the hunt begins for searching deals, banging head and dozens of searches only to find out that the ticket prices have surged upwards.

Americans travel a record number of times to a variety of places throughout Europe, Africa, and Asia. Booking a ticket at a bargain price needs skill and timing to unearth the best bargain deal.

There are extensive surveys done on what’s the best time to buy an airline ticket. Some have covered hundreds of millions airfare prices and thousands of destinations before arriving at the conclusion below.

Here’s our comprehensive guide on how to book your ticket right, and make sure you never go wrong with the timings.

1.) Early bird doesn’t get the worm when it comes to airline ticket booking

A lot of people have this notion that they will get the prices cheaper if they book at the earliest which is not necessarily the case. Winning passengers are not those who book too early, or those who book at the last minute.

A lot of people have this notion that they will get the prices cheaper if they book at the earliest which is not necessarily the case. Winning passengers are not those who book too early, or those who book at the last minute.

  • Taking the first dib 6 – 11 months in advance

Here you may end up paying a slightly premium price whereas the subsequent buyers may find lower prices in the due course during fare sales. The only advantage I can see is that there are more options and better chances of securing a desired flight.

  • Wider options between 4-6 months

There’s a broad choice of seats and flights available during this window, however, you may still not get any discounts.

  • Shoppers delight prime booking window: 4 months – 3 weeks

The window will see border fare range and the prices also start plummeting. Airlines are in a dash to expend seats as the time close in and won’t mind throwing in occasional discounts.

  • Stretching your luck during 2-3 weeks

This is getting close now and the first choice seats may no longer be available, however it’s the best window after the prime window above

  • Off the deep end during 1-2 weeks in advance

Of course, prices will be steep and there will be lesser choices but with your chances of grabbing a seat are not altogether doomed.

  • This is as far as it gets: 0 – 1 week in advance

As luck would have it, you may find a flight and a seat but options are far too constricted and the prices shoot up around 35 percent.

Here’s a season wise time frame for the best time to buy an airlines ticket skimmed from millions of flights covering more than 3000+ destinations.

2.) Prime booking window for U.S. Domestic Flights:

According to a study, the prime time window for booking a domestic US flight is anywhere between 3rd week to 3 months in advance.

Best time to buy air tickets within the US continent as per seasons:

Winter: 60 – 65 days in advance

Christmas and New Year’s are among the most expensive travel periods in winter.

Spring: 75 – 90 days in advance

There are no major holidays during spring, however, the industry warms up to the spring break during March and April.

Summer: 40 – 50 days in advance

This is the most popular season and July tops the month chart for travel. But there’s a leaner period towards August and September and it begins to ease out then.

Fall: 60 – 70 days in advance

There are great bargains during the fall period with exception to Thanksgiving.

3.) Booking an international ticket

International flights from the US are less expensive at least 2 months in advance before the travel dates.

There seems to be a drastic change in this route in terms of the optimal booking window which earlier used to be 7-9 months in advance that has shrunk to just 3 months this year.

There seems to be a major development in the trans-Pacific routes which has seen abundance in the seats and therefore more seats are up for grab for longer and a price dip is in favor of the customers. This has shrunken the best date booking window even closer.

Here’s a continent-wise list of the right time to book flights from the US.

  •    Central America: 60 days
  •    South America: 80 days
  •    Canada: 60 days
  •    Mexico: 60 days
  •    Caribbean: 75 days
  •    Asia: 90 days
  •    Europe:100 days
  •    Africa: 120 days
  •    Middle East: 120 days

4.) Dead Zones are the Cheapest time of the year to fly from the US

Dead Zone is the time frame when the traveler influx is low at the airport which works in favor of the passengers.

4 Biggest Dead Zones of the year in the US-

Early December & After January: Thanks Giving, Christmas and the new year is the time when the world is busy getting ready for big festivities.  First two weeks of December and the first week of January is when the festive storm subsides and the tickets are cheaper.

Spring is the second cheapest season after January and fall season till late August and it goes all the way up to October. Similarly, flying on off-peak days like Tuesday and Wednesday can also cost cheaper.

Nency Willims

Nency Willims is a writer whose words are fueled by the inspiration she gains from her surroundings. She also loves cooking, dancing and most of all traveling. She is a regular contributor to many acclaimed travel magazines and blogs. When she is not writing or traveling, you can often find her meddling with her guitar.

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