Holiday shopping can be rough for the people in your life who have everything. Travel however, is a gift that doesn't take up space but makes a lasting impression for those who embark.
For your holiday travel gift giving, find the best deals on airfare with our guide. Read below before booking your next adventure.
When To Book
There is no “secret day”, or “secret time”.
But there are some rules of thumb:
- If possible, track prices from four months up to three week before your trip
- Book no less than 21 days before your flight
- Avoid the two days before and after holidays
- If your travel dates are flexible, check off-peak days like Tuesday and Wednesday
How to Book
- Check website like Google Flights or Expedia. These tools help you compare options like schedule, airline and stops in addition to price.
- Track the flights that fit your schedule, it's easy on Google Flights or Hopper. You'll be alerted when the price decreases or increases, and will see historic data that will help predict when prices will gradually rise without falling.
- Consider other options like the airport you're flying into such as LaGuardia or Newark for the New York City market, or Reagan National or Dulles for your DC trips. If you're looking to book a flight with an ultra low cost carrier like Spirit to Orlanda, think about bundling your hotel with your flight, or reducing the amount of luggage you'll purchase.
Where to Book
On the air carrier’s website. After you've checked, tracked and considered your options be sure to book your travel directly on their airline's website. There are numrous reasons why this is the best option:
- Upfront baggage policy and purchase ability
- Generally lowest fare
- Real-time alerts about flight
- Rebooking options earn miles
Other Ways to Save
- Earn miles and redeem for travel
- Through travel, dining, entertainment
- Discount and free upgrades
- Discount bags
- Email offers and exclusive deals
- Free to join
- Sign up on your carrier of choice’s website
Email alerts and apps
- Receive email alerts
- Learn about air service options and updates
- Find inspiration for upcoming trips
- Some of our favorites include:
Scott's Cheap Flights
If you're looking for a new credit card or way to score travel deals, look into your favorite carrier's credit card (usually with an annual fee) or a generic travel card (with or without an annual fee).
Carrier cards generally have exclusive perks for members such as lounge access, extra points, upgrade priority, campanion certificates and travel credits for TSA PreCheck or Global Entry. Prices vary by airline. Find options on your carrier's website.
Credit cards such as CapitalOne or Chase allow you to pay a smaller fee or no fee while still earning miles for every dollar spent and extra miles for promotions. You'll be able to redeem these points for travel and sometimes trade points in to pay for past travel purchases.