According to legend, Tuesday mornings are the best time to buy plane tickets. In reality, it’s not so simple to game the system. But there are ways to become a savvier consumer.
1. Airlines are constantly comparing prices against their competitors and making adjustments; there is no set best time of day or week to buy.
2. Book tickets in advance.
3. Monitor prices.
4. Be aware of cancellation policies, so you can take advantage of a cheaper fare that might come along.
5. Pay attention to changes in frequent flier programs. Many airlines are decreasing the value of airline points, so it’s generally better to use points sooner rather than later.
6. Try using a site like Award Wallet to track your frequent flier points and store your account information in one place.
7. The service Skiplagged tacks on an extra leg to your flight for an overall cheaper fare price. It takes advantage of so-called hidden city pricing, guiding users to cheaper tickets if they exit an airport in their desired city during a layover, rather than taking a direct flight to that city. Skiplagged has seen its share of controversy in recent years. One tip: Use this only if you don’t plan on checking bags.
8. Look up the best seats for legroom and luggage space on a site like Seat Guru, which provides information on different Boeing and Airbus model planes.
Click the media player above to hear more.
We’re here to help you navigate this changed world and economy.
Our mission at Marketplace is to raise the economic intelligence of the country. It’s a tough task, but it’s never been more important.
In the past year, we’ve seen record unemployment, stimulus bills, and reddit users influencing the stock market. Marketplace helps you understand it all, will fact-based, approachable, and unbiased reporting.
Generous support from listeners and readers is what powers our nonprofit news—and your donation today will help provide this essential service. For just $5/month, you can sustain independent journalism that keeps you and thousands of others informed.