When is the cheapest time to fly?
I have flown more than 50 times over the last 2 years and have noticed similar pattern over the time. Please note that this article is mostly going to apply to low cost airlines because that is what I have flown with and UK and Ireland and most of Europe since at other parts of the world holidays and seasons will be at different times. All what you see in this article is based on my person experience and your actual results may vary depending on market demand etc.
Without any doubt the cheapest time to fly is in winter – November, December and January, that is when demand is at its lowest so airlines reduce their prices to keep planes full. Over the winter of 2016/2017 Ryanair operated very aggressive pricing strategy in order to fill up their planes and gain market share. This was particularly noticeable from the UK where you could fly each way to Canaries for just 9.99. Complete opposite happens in summer, this is when most people take their holidays and therefore demand peaks with most expensive months being July and August. So if you want to fly cheaply, consider flying between period of October and May.
What about day of the week? Well.. without any doubt weekends are usually more expensive except Saturdays usually a bit cheaper and cheapest days to fly either way will be on Tuesday and Wednesday.So if you plan a weekend break then you will probably still have to book 2 days of leave to save more money. Book outbound Wed/Thu and return on Saturday or fly out on Sat and then come back on Tue/Wed.
When is the cheapest time to fly during the year?
February (average price increasing but still relatively cheap)
March (average price increasing but still relatively cheap)
April (usually more expensive than previous 3 months)
May (getting expensive)
July (most expensive)
August (most expensive)
September (generally cheaper than previous two months from mid month onwards)
When is the cheapest time to fly during the week?
Monday (usually cheaper than Fri or Sun)
Thursday (price increasing)
Friday (most expensive)
Sunday (most expensive)
Periods when flying is expensive due to holidays and school breaks – dates are approximate
1 week before, during and after Easter
May bank holidays
Periods when flying is cheaper?
Anything outside expensive periods. I have noticed that end of November and first two weeks of December is the cheapest time of the year to fly. It is generally cheaper to fly anytime from October until May except public and major holidays during this period
How far in advance can you book flights?
This varies from airline to airline. With Ryanair I noticed that at very low season low demand dates you can book as soon as 2-3 days before departure. But typically about 3 weeks in advance around 20-25 days before departure. And there you have it.
If you have any questions or anything to add please feel free to do so in the comment section below.