Vacations no doubt can be costly affairs. It is not uncommon to see that we exceed our budget by a huge margin, when we go on a vacation. Therefore, it makes sense that we try to save as much as we can, where avenues present themselves. One of the areas, where one can save is on airline tickets. If one is planning a vacation in advance, then it makes sense to buy airline tickets in advance. That leads to the question, how many days in advance should one buy airline tickets? It is often seen that airlines hike their prices, closer to the departure date. Therefore, the days just prior to departure date are not the safest bet.
How Far in Advance to Buy Airline Tickets to Get the Best Price
The answer to when to buy airline tickets is anywhere between 60 to 21 days prior to the departure. Often, approximately 60 days before the scheduled departure the cost of the tickets is slashed. Therefore, it is best to buy around the said time. Till 21 days before the departure the tickets are on the cheaper side. The cost starts increasing, as the travel date approaches.
At this point, I would like to bring it to your notice that there are some sectors, which always have full flights as they are the highest commercial sectors. Therefore, if you are flying on such a sector, then it is best to be really quick in grabbing tickets. On the other hand, there are certain sectors, where the flights never run full. On such sectors, you may be able to bargain, and get real cheap tickets.
The other side to the answer of the question how long in advance to buy airline tickets is, not to buy tickets, around the holidays. These are the days, when flight tickets will inherently be expensive. Therefore, you will have to schedule your vacation such that your flying days do not coincide with holidays. This is the time, when most people choose to travel, and the flight rates tend to be expensive on these days. At the same time, it is 'not' recommended that you fly over the weekend. Those are the days, when everyone wants to travel from one place to another, which often leads to increase in the airfare. There is manifold advantage of traveling on weekdays. Not only are the tickets cheaper, but often you may get pick up and drop service as well, along with cheaper hotel bookings.
Along with the tips mentioned above, there is one more tip, which you should remember. Before you book your tickets, it is best to compare the airfare. The airfare can be compared with different websites, and also with different travel agents. It also makes sense to compare the fare of different airlines. If you are flying to a particular country, then it makes sense to opt for their national carrier. The cost of tickets is often lower on those airlines.
There are certain days of the week, when most airlines slash their fares. If you book on those days, the chances of you bagging cheaper tickets are many. Also you should be looking at a particular time as well. In most cases, Tuesdays and Wednesdays are the days to look out for. Also tickets are often slashed post-midnight. Therefore, you will have to burn the midnight oil to be able to book some cheap airline tickets.
To sum up to get the best price, tickets should be bought anywhere between 21 to 60 days prior to the departure date. Looking up the different airline websites is also recommended to land some cheaper tickets. These tickets are cheaper, as the airlines do not have to pay commission to different travel agents, or to different travel portals. Some part of the commission is passed onto the traveler.