Everyone has heard that buying airline tickets is cheaper on Tuesday. While that used to be true, more recent statistics suggest that when you plan to fly is actually more important than when you buy airline tickets. That isn’t to say that buying an airline ticket on Tuesday won’t save you money – but it’s not the tried and true method it once was.
Why are airline tickets cheaper on Tuesday?
Years ago, buying airline tickets was cheaper on Tuesday than any other day. According to people that know the airfare industry well, sales on tickets used to go public on Tuesday. This meant that in order to get the airline tickets on sale, a person had to check on Tuesday before they were all gone. Back in those days, managers were manually updating prices and inputting discounts. Just after the new information posted, tickets were cheaper. Since the sale prices were always inputted on Tuesdays, it became well known that airline tickets were cheaper on Tuesday.
Even though it used to be that way, it isn’t that way anymore. Today’s technology allows these prices to update more frequently and sales can happen at any time, which put an abrupt end to airline tickets being cheaper on Tuesday.. This means that on a single flight there can be more than 10 different price points and they can change at the drop of a hat. Before it was easy and everyone knew that they could get cheaper airline tickets on Tuesday, but now, there is no clear time to book the cheapest flights. According to 2017 data, there was less than 1% variance on a specific flight price no matter what the day.
Are airline tickets really cheaper on Tuesday?
It turns out when you buy airline tickets is not as important as when you use them. Flights themselves are actually cheaper when they depart on Tuesday or Wednesday. Historically, data shows that flying out on Wednesday is the cheapest with Tuesday coming in a close second. According to the most recent numbers a seat on a plane is about $73 cheaper on Tuesday or Wednesday than any other day of the week. However, airline tickets aren’t always cheapest on those two days.
The price of an airline ticket on Tuesday (or any other day) is actually determined by demand, destination and the market price for that time period. Finding affordable airline tickets is more about planning in advance and lying in wait for the exact moment to pounce on a discounted price. Since the discounted prices for airline tickets are not the cheapest on Tuesday, it’s recommended to check more frequently or set up alerts on your smartphone for when the prices of airline tickets fluctuate.
How to get the cheapest airline tickets?
Travel gurus say to start checking for the flight prices at least 6 weeks in advance. Some experts say the first price drop in an airline ticket happens a few months before the flight is scheduled. It’s said that the first price drop is usually the lowest and should be taken advantage of. For those who like to live on the wild side, last minute deals on a flight leaving soon can also be really inexpensive.
Overall, getting the cheapest airline tickets is about price shopping, patience and not relying on third parties to give you the best deal. Even though the airline tickets are not always cheaper when bought on a Tuesday, flying out on a Tuesday is almost always a good idea.