Our huge family has two primary bases: New York and Florida. As a result, those tend to be our go-to road trip vacation spots.
We’re now trying to coordinate trips with various relatives to fly in and vacation together in other states.
Fortunately, CheapAir.com’s Annual Airfare Study sheds some light on finding the best domestic flight deals in the U.S.
Surprisingly, there’s no difference in airfare whether buying a ticket on a Sunday, Tuesday or any other day of the week.
The cheapest fares are found when you book about 70 days before departure.
Bargain shopping? Try to monitor airfares for travel routes during the Prime Booking Window (4 months to 3 weeks before leaving). Destination discount fare alerts can be set up on such sites as Hipmunk.com, Airfarewatchdog.com, GoogleFlights.com or an app like Hopper.
The one factor that plays a significant role in price is the time of year.
Here are some tips on when to buy flights for each season:
The best summer deals are in August and September, with late summer offering the lowest prices overall.
- The average best time to buy is 47 days (about 1.5 months) in advance.
- Prime Booking Window is 14 – 160 days (2 weeks – 5 months) from travel.
If you’re traveling in the fall (excluding Thanksgiving), you can usually wait a bit longer to book air tickets and still not miss out on the good prices.
- The best time to buy is 69 days out
- Prime Booking Window is 21 – 100 days from travel.
Here are tips for general (non-holiday) winter travel.
- 62 days from your expected travel date is the best time to buy an affordable airline ticket in the winter months.
- Prime Booking Window is 21 – 110 days from travel.
With Spring Break dates spanning March through April, finding a good deal in the spring can be challenging.
- Exactly 3 months (90 days) from your travel date on average is the window to buy best airfare for spring air travel.
- Prime Booking Window is 46 – 122 days from travel.