Most people who have ever planned a summer vacation know that if you don’t make reservations for popular destinations early, the odds are good that you’ll be out of luck.
If your summer vacation plans include international travels,
generally the sooner you book your flights the better. Try to book four or five months in advance, as the closer you get to your travel date the more expensive flights will become. It is also important to keep in mind that certain weeks tend to be more heavily traveled than others –such as the last couple weeks of August as families try to squeeze in travel before school resumes. And once you hit Memorial Day, you can pretty much expect to pay a premium for flights, as that marks the start of summer holidays for many travelers and prices tend to rise accordingly.
For travel to places other than Europe it turns out that the sweet spot as far as savings is actually two to three weeks before travel, at least according to travel website Skyscanner.com. It seems that both the day of the week and the time of day you choose to book flights can also have an impact on what you’ll ultimately pay to travel. According to Skyscanner.com, Tuesday is the best day of the week to book flights for travel within the United States, while Wednesday is the best day to book international flights. It appears that the early bird does in fact get the worm, as 5 a.m. is the best time of day to get the highest savings.
Regardless of where you are traveling or when you book your flights and accommodations, the earlier you begin budgeting for and putting aside money for your travels the better. It can also be helpful to subscribe to travel newsletters and to check discount sites such as Groupon for any coupons that may be available for your destination, or possibly even for discounted accommodations.
The worst thing you can do is to go into debt for a vacation, or run up your credit cards, as the inability to pay off your cards in full means that any interest charges you need to pay on those cards is likely to negate any savings on travel and possibly even mean paying significantly more in the end.