Latest Pricing Analysis Confirms Cheapest/Most Expensive Thanksgiving Days to Fly

Consider a One-Night Stand to Score the Absolute Best Deal for Thanksgiving Travel

Dallas, TX. October 17, 2016 – has released new study from proprietary data based on the analysis of 1.8 million airfares for 100 of the busiest domestic markets for travel during Thanksgiving. This research offers travelers still shopping for flights over the Thanksgiving holiday fresh insights into the premium to be paid for flying on two of the busiest travel days of the year: Wednesday, Nov. 23 and Sunday, Nov. 27.

The answer? Travelers who choose to fly on those days could pay as much as 65% more per round trip ticket compared to those flying on Thanksgiving day – Nov. 24 – and returning on Tuesday, Nov. 29.

The study also reveals that travelers who want to pay the least for a Thanksgiving trip should consider a one-night stand; departing on Thanksgiving Day and returning on Black Friday. The average round trip fare for that day pair combination is $367.

“For Thanksgiving travel, there’s really no such thing as a good deal,” said Rick Seaney, CEO and Founder, FareCompare. “It’s all about finding a better bad deal. And the best way to skirt around the edges is to take an early flight out on Thanksgiving morning and fly back on Black Friday. The airlines know many travelers want to fly the Wednesday before Thanksgiving Day and the Sunday after, and they know they’re willing to pay more.”

The chart below breaks down the average roundtrip fare for 15 potential departure/return combinations during the week of Thanksgiving, priced lowest to highest:

Departure DayReturn DayAverage Roundtrip Fare
Thursday, 11/24/16Friday, 11/25/16$367
Thursday, 11/24/16Tuesday, 11/29/16$395
Tuesday, 11/22/16Friday, 11/25/16$406
Monday, 11/21/16Friday, 11/25/16$420
Tuesday, 11/22/16Tuesday, 11/29/16$425
Thursday, 11/24/16Saturday, 11/26/16$449
Thursday, 11/24/16Monday, 11/28/16$470
Sunday, 11/20/16Friday, 11/25/16$484
Wednesday, 11/23/16Monday, 11/28/16$531
Tuesday, 11/22/16Saturday, 11/26/16$543
Wednesday, 11/23/16Saturday, 11/26/16$549
Sunday, 11/20/16Saturday, 11/26/16$568
Thursday, 11/24/16Sunday, 11/27/16$600
Sunday, 11/20/16Sunday, 11/27/16$649
Wednesday, 11/23/16Sunday, 11/27/16$662

Further analysis conducted by the team of FareCompare data scientists shows that waiting even one day to purchase your Thanksgiving flights costs extra. Between now and October 31, the increase is approximately $2 per day and after Nov. 1, it jumps to $4-5 per day.

“Procrastinators will pay,” Seaney said. “If you know that you’re flying over Thanksgiving and see you a price that you like, book it. Don’t expect any last minute bargains.”

Other money and time-saving travel tips for Thanksgiving travelers courtesy of FareCompare:

Check your reservation: On the evening, prior to departure, check the status of your flight and make sure you are signed up for email/text alerts to receive status updates on your flight.

Get/stay connected: Make sure your airline can reach you in the event of delays or flight cancellations

Pack light: Don’t check your luggage – most airlines still do not charge to carry-on one bag and one personal item.

Get to the airport early: The airport will likely be crowded, security lines long, parking lots jammed.

Know the security rules: If you have any questions, consult the TSA Web site for a quick refresher.

About FareCompare

Headquartered in Dallas, FareCompare makes shopping for airfare easy and simple by comparing currently available fares from a wide variety of sources through one simple search.  The company’s multiple products allow customers across the world to keep track of their favorite destinations and specific travel dates, plus find great low price deals that are not publicized through its best-in-class deal detection algorithms.  is the trusted source of 6 million global users every month.

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