Going on a trip can be so relaxing but actually planning it? Stressful! Not to mention downright expensive.
We all want to get away while getting the most bang for our buck, so it’s important to know when it’s the best time to book a flight.
Daily Hive spoke with Chris Myden, founder and CEO of Ydeals Inc, for his expert advice on all things travel. Myden runs the popular site YYZ Deals, which helps millions of Canadians book the best travel deals. If anyone has the answers, it’s likely him.
- You might also like:
- Canada's newest low-cost airline pushes back launch date yet again
- Lost bags, delays, cancellations: Here's how to exercise your air passenger rights
- Canadian flight attendants share hot travel tips — and airports to avoid
What is the best day to book a flight?
A heavily debated topic when it comes to travel is the cheapest day to book a flight. A quick Google search will reveal it’s Tuesday but there’s more to it than that.
Booking a flight for Monday, Tuesday, or Wednesday is usually 10 to 15% cheaper than any other day of the week, Myden says.
“The supply (number of seats on the plane) remains the same throughout the week, but the demand for travel is higher around weekends, because, well, many people work Monday to Friday schedules,” he says.
Truth or false: Browsing for flights on a weekday will be cheaper than browsing on a weekend
Myden is quick to debunk this popular myth. He says the savings are “minimal at best (less than 2% on average).”
He reminds travellers that this is referring to the day of the week that you’re actually browsing for airfares, not the day you’re flying.
When is the best time to book a domestic flight?
According to Myden, it’s somewhere between 1.5 and 2.5 months before your intended travel date.
If you try to book something less than a month out, you’ll often find the flights are expensive, he warns. But don’t wait too long, either.
“Similarly, in years past, booking domestic flights that were more than 5 months away have often also been expensive,” he says. “Low-cost airlines like Flair have changed things up a bit. They will often drop their prices right through to the end of their seasonal schedule, which can be as far as eight months away.”
Larger airlines like WestJet and Air Canada will try to match these prices and offer cheaper prices further out, but Myden says it’s rare. He’s seen them go back to their old ways of only offering cheaper flights a few months out.
What’s cheaper: a nonstop or a layover flight?
On average, nonstop or direct flights, as they’re commonly called, will be 20% more expensive than a flight with a layover, Myden says.
Again, it’s just supply and demand. “Travellers are willing to pay a bit more for a flight that will get them there faster with less chance of the issues that can arise with a connecting flight,” he says.
Wherever you end up going on vacation, we hope it’s somewhere great. Safe travels!