Here’s the Secret to Scoring Major Seat Deals on Flights

Bon voyage

Most of us are daydreaming about escaping the winter to a white sandy beach somewhere and let’s face it – traveling is f*&%ing expensive. We recently stumbled upon this industry secret that might be able to turn your dream into a reality. Check it!

While the times they are a-changing and travelers don’t need to go to travel agents and flight centres to book their tickets anymore, the airlines still work off of a dated system that once you know how it works, you’ll save tons. It all started when airlines had special promotions in newspapers and travel agencies, which were only open during business hours. When Monday would roll around, airlines would determine which flights that week had the most unsold seats and release sales in attempt to fill them out. But wait and hold out another day because on Tuesday is when the airlines begin to compete with each other, offering the best deals of the week in order to persuade travelers. If you really want to put this trick to good use, FareCompare determined that most optimal time to book a flight is Tuesday at 3PM EST.

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(Photo by Tommylege via Flickr)

Now that you know the best time of week to book your plane tickets, you need to figure out how far in advance to lock down those flights. CheapAir does a massive study each year where they look at their top 15,000 markets and compare almost 5 million trips to come up with some helpful numbers. Looking at flights booked a whole year out to the day before, CheapAir found that on average, the best time to purchase your flights one to four months before.

Gone are the days of last minute seat sales. If you book too early, airlines aren’t desperate enough to drop the price, and if you wait around, they’ll assume you’re desperate enough to spend. So if you’re looking to jet set in the next year, aim for the magic number of 47 days from the time you want to fly. Of course there are exceptions to this rule: during holiday and peak travel times, flights tend to book up quite early, so it’s best to check flights well in advanced to monitor availability and price.

Happy travels!

(Photo by Benson Kua via Flickr)