Cheapest Days to Fly in 2021

As is tradition here at FareCompare, we like to look ahead to the new year with a comprehensive airfare overview. Since we were too eager to wait until January, welcome to the Cheapest Days to Fly in 2021! To find this information, we reviewed more than 280 million airfares from FareCompare's proprietary airfare database, which covers ticket prices through September (pro tip: most airlines don’t actively manage fares more than nine months ahead). You'll be able to use this overview as a helpful shopping guide for deals now through the summer season.

Remember that given the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic situation, it's important to take continued precautions while planning any form of travel. Consult our overview of flight information and updates related to coronavirus, stay focused on prioritizing health and safety protocols, and you'll be on your way to an enjoyable trip, no matter your final destination.

How to Shop in 2021

When you're getting ready to purchase airfare, do as you would year-round: Compare airfares. No single airline always has the best deal, meaning if you don't compare, you could potentially miss out on big savings. Another tip: don't shop too late, either. The following months and dates refer to the cheapest days to fly in 2021; to get the best prices, book tickets at least a few weeks before departure. Do your homework and reap the benefits!

Another way to save: Connecting flights vs. nonstops

Cheapest Days to Fly: Winter

U.S. and Canada flights

  • Cheapest fares: January 7 to February 28
  • Cheapest single travel day: January 21
  • Best days-of-the-week to fly: Tuesdays and Wednesdays, followed by Thursdays
  • Days to avoid: Prices are higher February 14-17 due to Valentine’s Day and President’s Day weekend

Europe flights

  • Cheapest fares: January 22 to March 25
  • Cheaper days to fly: Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays

Bottom line: You've got choices. There are many days throughout January and February to find cheap domestic flights and flights to Europe.

Cheapest Days to Fly: Spring

U.S. and Canada flights

  • First post-winter price hike: February 28
  • Best days-days-of-the-week to fly in March/April: Tuesdays, Wednesdays
  • Most expensive days-of-the-week to fly in March/April: Fridays, Sundays

Europe flights

  • First post-winter price hike: March 26
  • Second price hike: May 14
  • Third (and largest) price hike: June 2

Bottom line: Early bird gets the worm. The earlier you fly in the spring, the better.

Cheapest Days to Fly: Summer & Fall

U.S. and Canada flights

  • First summer price hike: June 4
  • Major price hike: June 22
  • When prices drop: August 25
  • More price drops: Early to mid-September, especially for flights on Tuesdays and Wednesdays

Europe flights

  • First summer price hike: June 2
  • First price drop: July 15
  • Major price drop: August 11
  • Another major price drop: September 11

Bottom line: Go big or go home. Summer is expensive, but European fares begin to drop before U.S. prices.


A note on the methodology of our analysis: Data includes prices for tickets to and from every city in the world, each and every day, based on 6-8 day-long stays. The results are then crunched down to "average daily cheapest fares."

Top Travel Destinations

Now you know when to fly! Let's compare airfares to some of the most popular travel destinations.

Paige Nichols
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