Magic Date for Cheaper Flights This Summer

Mark this date on your calendar or keep it near your computer or electronic device, whatever you use for airfare shopping:

  • August 25, 2014

That’s the date airlines lower fares from peak season summer prices – to the cheaper fares of fall.

LISTEN: Rick digs a little deeper so you can save a little more.

Fares Drop 10% to 20%

Beginning Aug. 25, tickets prices drop from  10 to 20 percent – and sometimes significantly more. That’s because Aug. 25 is when demand drops, mainly because so many kids have to be back in school. In order to fill planes, airlines turn to discounting and that’s when you win.

How to Save with Aug. 25

Two ways to get in on the magic.

1. Delay your trip: If possible, try to push a big vacation back so it starts on or after Aug. 25 – precisely the travel period of so many recent airfare sales. NOTE: Do not delay purchasing your tickets, just vacation schedule.

2. Fly half your trip in the magic period: If you don’t have a lot of flexibility, try scheduling your return for Aug. 25 or beyond. On U.S. domestic flights, you still reap half the benefits. Unfortunately, overseas trips must include departures and returns on or after Aug. 25.

Other Ways to Save

Sometimes, you just can’t change vacation days. If that’s the case, try this when shopping.

  • Compare non-stops with connections: Adding a stop or two often results in cheaper tickets, but not always. You must compare to be sure.
  • Fly and drive: If you live in a smaller city, consider flying out of the nearest hub. It might be a long drive. You might even have to spend the night. The prices might be worth it. Check and see.
  • Fly the cheapest days: In general, these are usually Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Saturdays.

See more on this topic in Rick Seaney’s recent column for and see all his ABC columns here.


Published: June 10, 2014