So you’ve reached a point in life where you can afford to buy a plane ticket (YOLO) to your dream destination, or maybe you finally have the time to take a break from work or school and travel—do you know where to start? Whether you plan to travel domestically or internationally, it is possible to save some money on your flight. Here are some tips to help you determine the best time to buy a plane ticket, and the best time to plan that next adventure.
Are Tuesdays the Best Day to Buy?
For years now, people have considered Tuesday to be the best day to buy a flight ticket (and to eat Tacos,) but is this true?
Photo by Marc Chouinard
Some sources still believe that purchasing airfare Tuesday is the cheapest day to book a flight and it will score you the best deal since Tuesday mornings are when most airlines release their weekly sales. Tuesday afternoons are said to be the best day to book a flight because by then, most other airlines have dropped their prices to match the competition. So while you might not get the best deal possible Tuesday, you’ll likely have access to a greater variety of discounted tickets, making it possible to find a really good deal. Bonus points if you can eat your tacos WHILE you hunt for flights.
When to Buy Your Ticket
Photo by Avi Richards
The truth is, if you’re serious about finding a great deal on airfare, you should be checking ticket prices multiple times a day to have the best chance of finding a killer deal. Some evidence suggests weekends are in fact the best time to purchase a plane ticket, preferably on a Saturday or Sunday. Purchasing a last-minute ticket might in fact be your best chance to score a deal, but if you’re a planner and want to lock in your ticket ahead of time, it’s a good idea to purchase tickets anywhere from 47 to 76 days before your trip when traveling domestically, and 99 days prior to your international trip.
When’s the Cheapest Time of Year to Fly?
For most destinations, the colder months are the best time to travel since that tends to be the offseason. When flying domestically, you’ll likely find the cheapest time of year to fly is between the second week in January and the first of April. Do some research on your desired destination to be sure you plan around local holidays and storm seasons to avoid delays and other problems. Traveling during the offseason also usually means fewer crowds as an additional benefit to cheaper flights. You don't want any crazy tourists in the way while you're snapping all your "Instagram worthy" shots!
Pack Your Bags
While really any time is the best time to travel the country or the world with the help of these tips, you can likely do it for less by finding the cheapest time to travel. So, no more excuses, get out there and wander!