When should you book your flight to get the cheapest fare? How can you get a free room upgrade? Avoid long security lineups? Here are some travel tips from the experts.
Book your flight six weeks in advance. Whether to book your flight now or wait for a better deal is one of the most perplexing questions air travellers face. According to a U.S. study by the Airlines Reporting Corporation (ARC) a good rule of thumb is to buy tickets six weeks before your flight. While it's not necessarily a surefire strategy to snag the cheapest fare -- depending on demand, airlines can offer deals all the time -- most people paid about 6 per cent below the average fare if they booked 42 days in advance, the study found.
A few other general tips to keep in mind:
-- Typically, the cheapest day to travel domestically is midweek (Wednesday), according to Farecompare.com. Other low cost days are Tuesday and Saturday, and not surprisingly, the most expensive days to travel are Friday and Sunday. And early birds often catch the best deal; the first flight of the morning usually has the lowest fare.
-- Surfing the net for deals? This is another task you might want to do early in the day. Experts say airlines offer more reduced fares in the morning, and these tickets can sell out quickly.
-- If you decide to hold off in hopes of a drop in price, it's a good idea to sign up for fare alerts offered by travel sites such as Travelzoo. Another price-tracking service, Yapta.com, can even alert you if the price of your plane ticket drops after purchase. This allows you to request an airline voucher for the price difference.
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