When it comes to scoring flight deals, you might think you have to buy them way in advance, but you might be able to score a deal closer to your travel date. When it comes to booking flights for the holidays, I have always assumed the best time to book is with at least two or three months advance. However, it seems that this information may not be true, according to some recent data analysis reports.
If you haven't booked your flight for the holidays yet, you actually might end up paying less than people who have already booked. According to data gathered by Adobe and sent to Elite Daily, "holding off until December to book Christmas flights" may mean savings for you. Adobe Digital Insights (ADI) uses Adobe Analytics to "analyze over 1 trillion visits to websites, including many of the world's leading travel sites from 2018 to 2019."
ADI projects that flights for Christmas, Dec. 25, will end up going down in cost by as much as 13% the first week of December. But Vivek Pandya, managing analyst of ADI, also warns you not to wait too long. "Prices will jump back up [8%] the week prior to the holiday." So, make sure you have your tickets before Dec. 18.
Adobe isn't the only company that has verified the best time of year to travel for Christmas. Expedia also analyzed thousands of holiday bookings to help travelers out during the stressful time of year. According to Expedia's press release, the cheapest time to buy flight tickets for Christmas travel is between Nov. 23 through Dec. 9. In fact, the company states that "booking during this window saved travelers around 15%." Expedia's advice is to book at least "two weeks to a month in advance of travel."
To further support that this window is a better time to purchase airline tickets, Expedia says it's estimated that people who book their flights "91-plus days out" ended up paying 15% more than what they could have saved if they booked during that end of November through early December time slot.
If you're planning on traveling for Thanksgiving, you will most likely be paying more at Christmas. ADI confirms that "ticket prices for the week leading up to Christmas are nearly 17% more expensive than the week leading up to Thanksgiving." Yikes. In that case, it's probably best to follow the time frame window that both of these companies suggest. Basically, as long as you don't wait to buy until right before the holiday, you should hopefully be able to find some kind of deal.
Of course, it's always a good idea to grab a cheap flight whenever you see it, especially if you know it's a good deal for the area you're heading to.