The age old question, when is the cheapest time to book a flight? You will hear and see all sorts of ideas on the internet now but the below is based on statistics only, aimed at giving you a more accurate representation of when the cheapest time is to book flights.
Overall, September is the cheapest month to book a flight and Friday is the cheapest day to book a flight. However, this is just an overall statistic. There are many variables which we need to explore.
Many people think that booking flights as far in advance as possible or alternatively, as late as possible will get you the best deal. I can tell you that this is false. There are specific times which are dependant on the location and season.
The most important thing to remember here is that we need to break down the term “flight” into sections, otherwise you will just end up finding out the best time as a whole across all the countries in the world, in every season from all airports. This is not going to help you! I’ve tried my best below to break this down so that it DOES help you!
1. When is the Cheapest Time to Book a Domestic Flight?
By far the most simple statistic to understand as there aren’t many airports to compare against in the UK compared to the rest of the world, plus the high and low seasons in different UK cities does not vary.
Answer: The Cheapest Time to Book UK Domestic Flights is April.
However, there is another variable to take into account; and that is how long before you travel should you book domestic flights? It’s no good booking in April if you want to fly in May for example.
The first reason for this is that flights may be sold out. The second reason is that the cheapest time in advance of your travel is 82 days (Around two months). Couple these two statistics together and I’d say your in the money for domestic travel in June if you book at the start of April.
2. When is the Cheapest Time to Book a Flight to Asia?
Now we start to get more complicated. There are several factors to take into account here, namely; departure airport, season (high or low in your destination) and how far in advance you are booking.
Next we need to take into account the amount of time leading up to travelling to Asia. Statistically booking your flight to Asia 90 Days in advance is the cheapest time.
So, in an ideal world you’d book at the start of November for a February trip. There are savings upwards of £200 to be made when booking flights to Asia at the right time.
Answer: The Cheapest time to Book Flights to Asia is in November.
3. When is Cheapest Time to a Book Flight to Africa?
When is the best time to book a flight to Africa? There are actually two different times. This is 5 months in advance for an average £46 per ticket saving or 2 months in advance for an average £60 per ticket saving.
Answer: Book your flight to Africa either 5 or 2 months ahead of flying for the best deals.
4. When is the Cheapest Time to Book a Flight to Europe?
The amount of time in advance that your flight to Europe requires booking for the biggest saving is 32 weeks. This will give you an average saving of £35 per ticket. For example, if you’re thinking of a trip to Europe next June, then the best time to buy would be the beginning of November.
Answer: The Cheapest Month to Book Flights to Europe is 32 weeks in advance.
5. When is the Cheapest Time to Book a Flight to America?
In line with flying to Asia, huge savings can be made on flights to America when booking at the right time. The prime time to book for savings is 1 month in advance, with average savings of £200 per ticket.
November is the cheapest month to book to travel to America. So for that Christmas shopping trip to New York, leave your bookings until the start of November.
6. When is the Cheapest Time to Book a Flight to Oceania?
Sydney anyone? Well the best time to buy would be 32 days in advance. Huge savings can be made upwards of £400. On such a long haul flight you also need to be careful when trying to save TOO much; as you can end up on a 48 hour long haul with 3 stops, or finding the tickets are sold out. Nobody wants that!
Check out the below infographic from Opodo.com for popular routes and the best times to travel. The months displayed below are when to travel and when to book.
In general, January and February are the cheapest times to travel and are not dependant on when you book. This time of year will be the low season for many spots around Europe but if your looking to explore and discover and not just sunshine, then why not!
Tip: When I am browsing to find out when is the cheapest time to book flights I use Kayaks explore tool. This allows you to select the departure airport and a date range. You have no need to select a destination; it will bring up a world map with the cheapest flights to every destination within that date range. Fantastic tool!