The biggest expense when it comes to travelling abroad is quite often the flight. However, everyone knows somebody who seems to be constantly landing those cheap airfares – you know the friend who never stops talking about those £1 flights they scored to Amsterdam or their half price win on their trip to Mexico. Why is it then, that whenever you feel ready to book a holiday, plane prices are sky high?
The world of the cut-price airfare is a tricky one due to constant changes in travel trends and airline priorities. What might work one year could easily change the next, according to the sudden rise or dip in popularity of a specific destination, weather issues or unforeseen international events. Therefore, predicting the cheapest time to get low-cost flights is not an exact science and sometimes, if you have a long-haul, pricey destination in mind, it could be a better option to call in a specialist travel agent who will be the well-versed in tracking down the deals.
There are, however, a few times of year when you might have a better chance of finding the holy grail of a low-cost flight to your dream destination. Here are a few to consider…
1. Low season
When do most people choose to travel? During public holidays when they feel they ought to make the most of their time off or tag their annual leave onto a public holiday weekend so they can enjoy a longer break. Additionally, families, students and those who work in education will also find they are tied to fixed holiday dates. As a result, expect airfares to be at their priciest during these times of the year. If it all possible, avoid bookings at peak times or, if it’s really necessary, sign up to flight alerts as early as possible so that you can grab a good deal if and when they arise.
Travellers naturally choose to book a flight towards the start or the beginning of the week – particularly business travellers, hurrying home after a week of working away, and those looking to make the most of their weekend but be back to work for Monday morning. Instead of competing, plan your flights to fly out or back mid-week. Of course, during peak season even mid-week can be busy, but off-peak and flying out on a Tuesday or Wednesday? You’re most likely to find the cheapest deals.
3. 54 days before take-off
If you’re of a scientific mindset, you might be in need of something a little more concrete to inform your booking efforts. Last year, CheapAir analysed data from approximately three million airline trips and revealed that, statistically speaking, the best time to grab a low-cost flight is 54 days before you fly. If it’s a bit too tricky to hit that figure, then stick to the ‘prime booking window’ of 21-112 days before your trip. This is when it appeared ticket prices hovered around the lowest price.
4. According to Google
Google Flights, the brand’s flight search engine, introduced a new feature to its app last year which notifies users when the flight deal they have been musing over will expire as well as revealing how much they could stand to lose out on if they don’t book now. The feature works using Google’s wealth of historical data so, although it isn’t infallible, it can hazard some pretty close guesses. Why not put yourself in their hands and take the pressure off?
Although buying travel insurance can feel like yet another expense when all you want to be doing is focusing on enjoying your next trip, it is an essential task to ensure peace of mind. If you fall ill, have an accident or lose any luggage whilst abroad, knowing that you will be reimbursed financially can take a weight off your mind and minimise the stress you could potentially face. NOW travel insurance has a wealth of policies to suit every budget. Get a quick and easy quote today.