How to Save Money on Holiday Airfares
Not as far as you'd think! For Thanksgiving travel, Kayak recommends booking at least 2 to 4 weeks ahead of your travel dates for the best deal. Once you get within that two-week time frame, flight prices significantly increase. The same holds true for New Year's Eve, but it's worth noting that median flight prices around the NYE holiday are historically more expensive than Christmas and Thanksgiving, hovering in the mid-$400 range. If you're traveling for the Christmas holiday, Kayak experts suggest planning a bit more in advance—about 4 to 6 weeks out is the sweet spot, with prices starting to surge at the beginning of December.
2. Is it true that flights are cheaper on certain days of the week?
Believe it or not, the cheap flight day is a myth! There's sadly no magical day (or time of day) to book the best deal. Kayak recommends booking right away if you see a ticket that works with your budget, though—fluctuations are unpredictable, and you don't want to risk a sudden price spike.
3. What are some of the most affordable destinations in December?
For international flights, consider Martinique, the #2 trending beach destination in Kayak's 2017 Travel Hacker Guide—median airfare from the U.S. and Canada dips below $500 during the month of December, whereas traveling during peak summer months can cost you upwards of $750. Another great and affordable destination if you're looking to escape the cold is Guadeloupe. Coming in at the #3 trending beach destination in Kayak's guide, the Carribean island sees warm and dry temperatures in December, which is also when median airfare from the U.S. and Canada is at its lowest.
4. And what if you don't mind the cold?
Beautiful Reykjavik tops Kayak's budget-friendly list for December, when flight prices dip and temperatures are slightly warmer. Not only does the Scandinavian city look like the backdrop of a winter fairytale, but you'll have VIP access to one of the best Northern Light displays in the world! It's worth noting, however, that meals and accommodations in Scandinavia tend to be pricey, so make sure to budget accordingly.
5. What about New Year's Eve specifically?
Canada is a smart choice—Toronto, in particular, tends to be an affordable destination for Americans. And if you're looking for somewhere a bit warmer to ring in the New Year, consider staying stateside and making a trip to Atlanta or Dallas, cities with median airfares under $300 around New Year's. Colombia is a great option, too, as the cities of Medellin, Bogotá, and Cartagena are all affordable NYE destinations. If you go, kick off 2018 in style: book a chiva (party bus) to get a taste of the city, its nightlife, and Colombia's anise-flavored "official" liquor: aguardiente. Other affordable destinations for New Year's Eve include Copenhagen, Dublin, Barcelona, Madrid, Paris, and Oslo.