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Booking an international flight? Study reveals best time to buy (and fly) for every locale

We found the best days to book air travel and get big savings. You're welcome.

Summer vacations are back. After a couple of muted years because of COVID-19, expect more and more foot traffic at airports this year. But what about prices? If you’re looking to score a cheap plane ticket, you’ll want to be savvy when trip planning and booking flights. So many factors come into play regarding the price of air travel, from whether you’re looking at international flights vs. domestic flights to which day you take off. When you book may also matter. Airline prices may vary (just like their reliability).

What’s the best time to book a flight? What’s the cheapest day to fly? Cheapair.com analyzed more than 917 million airfares in every continent. The report is robust. We scoured it to bring you the answers to your most pressing questions.

airport at sunset
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How to score a cheap plane ticket, according to data

Booking air travel? Here’s how to get the most bang for your buck, so you have more to spend at your destination.

Canada

Average airfare: $45

Cheapest days to fly: Customers saved an average of $47 per ticket on Tuesdays compared to Sundays.

Cheapest months to travel to Canada: February and March

Mexico

Average airfare: $504

Cheapest days to fly: Wednesdays are the cheapest days to fly to our neighbors to the South. Customers pay $95 less flying on a Wednesday versus a Sunday, the most expensive day to fly.

Cheapest months to travel to Mexico: February and September. Expect to save $200 on a plane ticket in February compared to December.

Caribbean

Average airfare: $548

Cheapest days to fly: Score cheap tickets to the Carribean by choosing to fly on a Tuesday. You’ll keep about $79 in your pocket choosing that date versus the prime day, which is Sunday.

Cheapest months to travel to the Caribbean: January and February

Central America

Average airfare: $577

Cheapest days to fly: People who fly to Central America on a Tuesday save about $67 more than those who opt for a Sunday.

Cheapest months to travel to the Caribbean: January and February

South America

Average airfare: $798

Cheapest days to fly: Tuesday travelers snag the most savings — $75. Plot twist: Saturday is the priciest day to fly to South America.

Cheapest months to travel to South America: February, March, and May

Europe

Average airfare: $986

Cheapest days to fly: Tuesday airline tickets are generally the cheapest — $121 less per ticket compared to Saturday flights.

Cheapest months to travel to Europe: February and March

Africa

Average airfare: $1,287

Cheapest days to fly: Tuesdays, which are $90 cheaper per ticket than Saturdays.

Cheapest months to travel to Africa: February and March

Oceana

Average airfare: $1,977

Cheapest days to fly: Tuesdays generally net travelers $141 in per-ticket savings versus people who fly on Wednesdays.

Cheapest months to travel to Africa: October and November

Asia

Average airfare: $2,046

Cheapest days to fly: Wednesdays save customers $286 per ticket compared to Sundays.

South Pacific

Average airfare: $1,085

Cheapest days to fly: Save $96 per ticket by flying on a Tuesday instead of a Sunday.

Cheapest months to travel to Africa: February and March

Middle East

Average airfare: $1,287

Cheapest days to fly: Tuesdays, which are $90 cheaper per ticket than Saturdays.

Cheapest months to travel to Africa: February and March

A busy airport with people getting in line at check in.
Phil Mosley/Unsplash

What is the best time to book a flight and score a cheap airline ticket?

The best time to book a flight to each of these destinations is 10 months in advance. Some have longer prime windows for booking flights. For example, Canada’s prime window is about three to 10 months, and Mexico’s is 1.5 to 10 months. Want to jet off to Asia? Try to book at least 4.5 months in advance. However, the best time to book a flight remains 10 months to ensure the top price.

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BethAnn Mayer
Beth Ann's work has appeared on healthline.com and parents.com. In her spare time, you can find her running (either marathons…
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