Everyone appreciates saving money on airfare. Here are the 3 tips on airfare savings to keep in mind when you’re thinking about traveling, or when you’re booking your travel based on a little calendar knowledge, a little patience, and a little luck.
1. Book airline travel on Tuesdays and (early) Wednesday.
According to writer Mark di Vincenzo, and as detailed in his book Buy Ketchup in May and Fly at Noon, the peak days to save money on a flight are Tuesdays and Wednesdays. And according to Lifehacker, if you can stay awake until 1:00 AM Wednesday, you may find even hotter deals. The rationale is that airlines update their inventory (flight seats) pricing early Wednesday morning, in the home timezone of the airline. For such a substantial discount, it might be worth it to practice your redeye technique when you book your next trip.
2. Travel on a Tuesday, a Wednesday or a Saturday.
According to the US Travel Association https://www.ustravel.org/answersheet, 26% of all US air travelers are business travelers, and airlines frequently sell these tickets for the most money. Since airlines know that inflexible dates and times are a requirement for many business trips and travelers, whenever you can book travel for a Tuesday, a Wednesday or a Saturday, the days least likely to have business travelers, you might get a good discount. According to USA Today, the savings are definitely worth looking for, up to 35%.
3. Trade your guaranteed flight seat on busy travel days for another guaranteed seat on a later flight.
This one is a bit more complicated, but you can do it – here’s how: Book travel to your destination on the last day of a holiday weekend, if you can be at the airport early. Arrive at the departure gate 90 minutes before boarding and start listening for the airline agents calling for guaranteed seat holders willing to be bumped. In most cases, the airline will improve the offers only if they haven’t found enough passengers willing to take a later flight, so be prepared to say yes early or late, depending on demand.
To use a personal example: we surrendered our return flight seats from Charles de Gaulle in Paris over Memorial Day Weekend a few years ago and were compensated €1900 for the pair of us to take the next day’s flight. The compensation was worth nearly 50% of the cost of the flight.
And that’s our 2-cents on the 3 tips on airfare savings to consider based on calenders. If you’re consistent, you’ll see how much money you can save for your next trip!
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