Finding Cheap Flights For the Holidays

Of all the times during the year to travel, holiday travel is the busiest. Traveling during the holidays can be a nightmare that can turn the happiest yuletide trip into a disaster – and turn you into Ebenezer Scrooge. Everyone wants to be home with friends and loved ones to celebrate the holidays. Folks are scrambling through terminals and depots trying to board planes and grab their baggage. It can be stressful, expensive and exhausting. Finding cheap flights on the holidays can at least relieve some of the stress and reduce the expense, and it is possible to get inexpensive airfare, if you are persistent, start early, and know where to look.

The day before Thanksgiving is the most traveled day of the year. Many folks opt to fly home to see loved ones for Thanksgiving and then spend Christmas at their own homes. The crowds are tremendous at the airports on the Wednesday before Thanksgiving and the airlines realize the desperation of people to get to their families – so fares are at their premium. A simple solution to beating the crowds and finding cheap flights on the holidays is to travel a couple of days before Thanksgiving instead of the day before. The crowds will be at bay and the flights will be less expensive. Of course traveling earlier may not be an option because of other commitments, so booking earlier may reduce the cost a bit. A flight on the holidays can be booked six months in advance. Booking early is usually rewarded with lower fares. Booking early also will guarantee a seat on a flight.

Trying to find cheap flights on the holidays may require pulling out all the stops. Check to see if the airlines offer any special group discounts (sometimes a group can be of five people) and ask if they offer any club discounts or employment discounts. A lot of the airlines offer discounts to federal employees, military members and other employees of affiliate companies, so it is worth a shot to look around for those airlines that offer such savings. Scour the advertised flights to see which airlines have the lowest fare. See if frequent flyer miles can be used on the holidays – a lot of airlines restrict the use of frequent flyer miles during specific times of the year.

Finding a cheap flight to make it home for the holidays can be accomplished but the “hunt” should start early and flexibility will really pay off. The cheapest flights will be during off hours, such as opting to depart at five a.m. in the morning or very late at night. Being flexible with the times of travel can really save some money, and being flexible with the dates of travel can also pan out to a couple of hundred dollars in savings.