Thanksgiving Flights and When to Buy Airline Tickets

Time to Start Shopping for Thanksgiving Flights? Yes!

This year, Thanksgiving falls on November 25. If that sounds far away, you’re fooling yourself.

The time to shop is now, and the time to buy is no later than early October.

Thanksgiving Flights Won’t Be Cheap

No, chances are very good that your Thanksgiving flight won’t be cheap. Everyone wants to fly then. Thanksgiving is one of those times of year the airlines play “gotcha” and they’ll make the most of it.

How to Get the Cheapest Tickets Possible

But there are some things you can do to get the best of the bad deals out there. Take a look:

Find the Best Possible Deals on Thanksgiving Flights Right Here

1. Be Flexible

  • Fly the cheap days: Travel on the cheapest days and times to fly – generally midweek and off-hours.
  • Beware airline surcharges: Avoid the “peak travel day” surcharges – not easy during the holidays, but look at our airline surcharge chart to find which days have the cheapest surcharges.

2. Set Airfare Alerts

There’s still a little time, so set airfare alerts for Thanksgiving flights, and as long as you’re at it, set them for Christmas and other holiday flights. We show you 3 simple ways to set airfare alerts.

2. Fly on Thanksgiving Day

Fly on Turkey Day itself and you could save big. As we’ve noted before, flying on most holidays is cheaper than flying on the days surrounding them, because nobody wants to fly then. But you might just like it, thanks to lack of traffic and airport congestion, and, you’ll be there in plenty of time for the carving of the bird.

3. Consider a Connecting Flight

You could pay a hefty price for the convenience of a nonstop, so do check out connecting flights, as well as nonstops. It may take longer, but could be worth it.

4. Don’t Check a Bag

Use a carryon and save yourself some money (believe it or not, a family of four can save up to $200 in bag fees). Besides, Thanksgiving typically isn’t a long trip; just wear your heaviest things, and pack light.

With the money you save by using a carryon, you might want to splurge on one of those “extras” like more legroom and priority boarding.

But get going on those tickets – and, safe travels.

Photo from riptheskull on Flickr

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Published: September 10, 2010