Let’s say you’ve decided to go on a trip and it requires you to fly halfway around the world. Even if you have chosen a destination, perhaps what’s more important is that you book your flight at the right time. Airline tickets are notorious for being expensive especially when you book at the wrong, but when exactly is the wrong time? Should you be booking months in advance? What if something comes up and you need to reschedule your vacation? Here are some tips for you to consider when you start buying airplane tickets.
If you’re simply traveling within your country, booking a flight at least a month in advance is advisable. The prices won’t be much different than when you book up to 60 days in advance so you might as well book as close to the date as possible. At this point, you would be at least 80-90% sure of your travel dates and you would push through with the flights.
International Flights Should Be Prepared Months in Advance
If you are going abroad, then this is a different story. International flights will need more planning and even if you have a set date, you can’t book a flight just yet. Some countries require a visa upon entering their country so before hitting the “buy now” button, make sure you’ll have all your necessary documents all good to go. International flights can be booked as early as eight to 10 months in advance. While it may seem like it’s too far ahead of your trip, the reasons for buying a ticket this early are that they are generally more affordable and seats tend to sell out faster than domestic flights. This is because there are far fewer flights that leave the country compared to domestic flights. Avoid booking too early, such as a year in advance, because prices will be too expensive. Airlines aren’t sure if these seats will be filled hence the high price. If you missed the eight to 10 months window, don’t fret. Three to four months in advance is another ideal time to buy airline tickets. By this time the airline already has a general idea of the number of people who will travel during certain days, making some dates cheaper than others.
Last Minute Booking Are Expensive
Booking a flight always at the last minute is not advisable unless you must fly out suddenly and the trip is unplanned. Most of the time buying a ticket on the day of the flight or a day earlier can make the flight burn a hole in your pocket. If you have frequent flyer miles, then this is the only time to use them (technically you won’t be spending anything, except for some minimal fees) and even then seats aren’t guaranteed.
Be Wary of Deals
So many airlines offer deals and some of them sound too good to be true — and most likely they are. It’s very important to read the fine print of such deals before booking. Most of the time, these deals only affect one way of the flight. Return tickets are charged in full. There are also surcharges and taxes that are not yet included in the deal so when everything is added up, you’ll realize that you didn’t really save that much
Choose Dates Carefully
For seasoned travelers, they know that avoiding peak season is the best time to travel. Peak season means this is the time that people will most likely be on vacation, causing a rise in airfare prices. Avoid holidays such as Christmas and New Year if you can help it.