Thanksgiving is the best time of the year to share dinner, drinks, and happiness with friends and family. It's also the time when most people travel to different destinations not only across America but also across the globe. As always, when demands go high, prices tend to hike, including airline tickets. So, if you're planning on traveling this Thanksgiving and want to save big, you should book your flights well in advance. It's estimated that over 50 million Americans will be traveling during Thanksgiving 2019. While you can expect heavy traffic and long queues at the airport, this post prepares you with tips on how to save money on Thanksgiving flights.
Get Started Today
It's always wise to start planning for any event early and Thanksgiving is no exception. That said, you can get great deals on airfare when you book flights at least two months in advance before the holiday mood settles in. Moreover, apps like Google Flights tracking tool can help you keep tabs on when the tickets are cheapest. The app comes loaded with plenty of features, such as fare alerts, baggage fees, and the Tips section which offers more insight about how to save on travels. If you're traveling alone, things can be quite simple. However, if you have kids, remember that seats will fill up pretty fast during the most popular traveling days. According to AAA, prices are expected to start hiking from November. So, by the look of things, the time to book your flights is now.
Avoid Flying on Expensive Days
According to statistics, the most expensive days to fly are Tuesday and Wednesday before Thanksgiving and the Sunday after Thanksgiving. If you don’t have school kids to worry about, you can extend your stay and travel on Tuesday or a few days later when the airport hassle has dimmed out. According to Hipmunk, the average flight ticket before the end of October costs $385, after which prices start to soar dramatically. Prices are expected to hike by up to $10 per day during the last two weeks leading up to Thanksgiving, with prices averaging over $500. The cheapest and the best day to fly has always been on Thanksgiving, and this year the date is November 28 in the U.S.
Flexibility Will Save You Money
If you set a fixed time and date to travel, you might not get any savings. Being flexible means that you can choose to fly very early in the morning or late at night. This way, you can save on both time and money. Likewise, don’t stick to well-known websites and apps only when looking for better deals. Check out less popular sites and you might be surprised to find cheaper prices.
Choose Alternate Airports
Flexibility doesn’t stop with websites and apps but also with airports. Finding alternate airports can save you lots of money and time. The thing is, all major airports will be filled with long queues and heavy traffic. But, if you decide to travel a few miles, you can find less congested airports that offer better prices. For instance, instead of traveling into Miami when heading to South Florida, you can get a huge discount if you're willing to travel 25 miles north to Fort Lauderdale airport.
Besides airfare, your budget can be stripped thin by baggage fees. Weigh your luggage before leaving for the airport to know in advance how much it will cost you. Remember, you’ll have to pay baggage fees twice, both on departing and returning flight. If possible, pack light to avoid the hassle of baggage claim and save yourself some time and money. Use carry-on bags and avoid huge roller bags. But then again, this depends if you're traveling alone or with the whole family.
Bring Your Own Snacks
Everything in the airport is overly priced, and while it can be quite tempting to purchase snacks, you can easily use up all the savings you made on the cheaper flight. So, we recommend carrying your own snacks in your carry-on bags. Don’t forget to carry a bottle of water to stay hydrated.
To Consider Before Your Purchase
As usual, airline tickets get pricey when the holiday season draws nearer. If you want to save big, book at least 60 days prior. It's also wise to be flexible with your travel plans. The prices change dramatically depending on your departure and return date. So, choose wisely and you’ll grab great airfare deals.
- Get Started Today: Avoid the price hikes, the airport hassle, and the heavy traffic by planning your travels early.
- Avoid Flying on Expensive Days: Knowing the expensive days to travel will help you avoid them and instead travel on the cheaper days. There are numerous apps that you can use to scan the airports and get price comparisons.
- Flexibility Will Save You Money: If you're flexible with your travel arrangements, you can land great discounts. Choose the dates and times carefully and you’ll be surprised at how much time and money you can save up.
- Choose Alternate Airports: Major airports are always crowded and pricey. Use the Goggle Flights app or any other app to find alternate airports and you’ll save big.
- Travel Light: Baggage fees add to your travel expenses. If possible, pack light to avoid paying extra.
- Bring Your Own Snacks: Everything from water to simple snacks is often marked up in airports. So, carry your own favorite (even homemade) snacks to indulge in while waiting for your flight.
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