In the face soaring inflation, many of us still plan to travel at one point during the holidays this year. NPR reports that airlines are already reporting high demand and rising prices, so the time to book is now. But before you actually select your travel dates, it could pay to chat with you family about a longer visit home than usual. Here’s how being flexible with your travel dates could be the easiest way to save on travel this holiday season.
Be flexible with your travel dates
You can take advantage of better deals if you avoid flights during peak travel times. This rule already applies to weekdays during any time of year, like choosing to fly home on a Monday over a Sunday.
The Wall Street Journal reports that the busiest travel days ahead of Thanksgiving are, predictably, the Tuesday and Wednesday before the holiday. The next peak times to avoid are the Thursday and Friday before the week of Thanksgiving, and then the Sunday after Thanksgiving. If possible, plan ahead now to book your travel around these busy (read: expensive) days.
Another risky hack to save money is flying on the day of the holiday. These numbers from NerdWallet back this up: A nonstop one-way flight from New York to Paris during Christmas week costs $868 on Dec. 22 or $910 on Dec. 23 this year. Those flights drop down to $482 or $563 if you risk flying on Dec. 24 or Dec. 25.
Speaking of Christmas, Forbes reports that flying some time ahead of the Thursday and Friday right before the holiday can lead to decent savings—an average of 15%, depending on your destination.
If possible, plan ahead to now to either arrive early or stay late with your family this holiday season. The savings could be well worth a little extra time back home.
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