It’s not even Labor Day and we’re out here asking you to think about Thanksgiving travel? And Christmas flights? Well, yes. Yes, we are.
We’ve got some great reasons that buying early this year is the best strategy for your wallet.
In 2020, COVID-19 put a pause on all but the most essential travel for the majority of Americans. Now, with the pandemic in retreat and vaccinations on the rise, most of us want to get back to visiting our loved ones – and a lot of people will make those connections for the first time in many months this holiday season.
Demand for Holiday Flights Could Outpace Supply
With the airlines in a rebuilding phase, and aircraft as well as staffing still limited, we might very well find ourselves in a situation where the available seats in Economy class are quite limited, with people willing to pay a premium just to get a crummy seat anywhere on the plane. Not ideal. Our advice is to book early to avoid potentially paying a premium.
Airline Change Fees May be on the Way Back
Though a lot of the larger domestic airlines suspended change and cancellation fees during the pandemic, some have started reinstating those fees, especially for the most restrictive fares. It’s true, you can still buy an Economy ticket and largely avoid change fees at the moment, but this might not be the case as we get closer to the end of the year.
Some airfare watchers predict that people might wait until later to buy, because there isn’t a penalty for canceling or changing their fare if they find a better deal later in the year. Again, things are very much in flux this year and the rules could change at any time. Our advice, don’t gamble with your cold hard cash. Pay attention to the change fees.
Your pandemic flight credits might expire
Were you banking on using a 2020 flight credit to buy your holiday flights? Keep in mind, some of the flight credits that were issued in the early days of the pandemic are starting to expire now. Make sure you keep an eye on the expiration date. Once they’re gone, you can’t get those back.
Protect Your Holiday Airfare with Price Drop Payback
We understand that people feel a little uncertain this year about when to buy. But CheapAir.com has a sweet little feature built into every airline ticket. If you buy early and the price of your flight should go down, we offer “Price Drop Payback (PDP).” With PDP, when you buy a ticket you automatically buy a little built-in insurance. If your ticket price goes down after you buy, we’ll give you a credit back for the difference, up to $100/ticket no questions ask.
For this reason, you can buy your Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Years, and Hanukkah airline tickets right now and relax knowing we’re protecting your price. No one else does this. We’ve got your back.
I procrastinate buying flights…what can I do?
If you find yourself to be a skeptic or a last minute shopper, we’re also here for you! Should you wait until prices to your destination start to seem less budget friendly, we’ve also got monthly payments to keep your plans on track. Our partner Affirm offers attractive financing options (as low as 0% on approved credit), and it will free up your Christmas cash for other items. Read more about how to book now and pay later using monthly payments.
Right now, holiday flight prices are relatively flat, but we will start to see a climb as summer winds down. You can track fares on our Holiday Flights page in real time, so bookmark our page while you research your options. We’ll be sharing more tips and suggestions for getting a good airfare over the next few months. Drop us a question you have or a topic you’d like for us to cover in the comments below.