Travel Tips Tuesday: Best Time To Book Flights & Hotels
This week Travel Tips Tuesday is best time to book fights and hotels
What is the Best Day of the Week to Book Airfare?
Tuesday (and sometimes Wednesday). Most airlines release sales early in the week, often on Mondays, which leaves other airlines scrambling to match prices. By Tuesday afternoon, most competing airlines have engaged in an all-out fare war. These sales usually last through Thursday, but since they tend to have very limited availability, you want to check fares on Tuesday (early Wednesday at the latest), and book immediately.
How Far in Advance Should You Book?
Flight prices can fluctuate much like the stock market. Often, people will advise you to buy your plane tickets early to snag deals, but that’s not always the best practice. Knowing when to buy and when to travel are key for grabbing great deals to exotic (and even not-so-exotic) locales.
Book off-season, if possible. If traveling abroad, September and October serve as great months to plan a vacation, as the winter weather hasn’t kicked up yet, and you avoid the heat and long lines of summer. Late winter, such as February and March, can also make for a great time to travel if you like cooler temperatures. Airfares generally cost less in the off-season months.
Book midweek flights. You’ll often find much cheaper fares flying out on a Tuesday than you will on a heavy travel day such as Friday or Sunday. Changing your dates could save hundreds of dollars on international flights, so keep your dates flexible if you can.
Book flights at off-peak Internet-use hours. The Times Online identifies weekday evenings and lunch times as bad times to book, as that’s when most people make their travel plans. The article suggests trying to book a flight on late weekday evenings or early mornings, when prices likely have dropped.
Book hotels as soon as you know of your travel plans, as hotel rates are steadier than flight prices. For low prices, consider a bidding site, such as Priceline, or a low-cost provider, such as Hotwire. Often times, you will not know which hotel you’ll get, but some forums will document the kinds of hotels they secure when booking through those sites.