We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Best Time to Buy International Air Travel

Greenville, North...
1 post
Best Time to Buy International Air Travel

I flew from North Carolina to London in 2007 for $466 round trip, so as I am now planning another trip to London from 8/16/13 to 9/1/13, I was stunned to see prices for the same flights at a whopping $1,455.70. I expected a price increase, but not almost tripple! Can anyone tell me the best time to shop for international airfare (how far in advance of travel, or a particular day of the week I should buy)? I keep getting alerts of fares below $1,000 for the same trip, but always with travel dates in less than a month. Should I wait, or book now? I flew non-stop from RDU before, but am willing to consider other options as long as they're on well-known airlines. My travel dates are fairly set in stone, however, because I already have show tickets bought and a flat rented.

Level Contributor
12,393 posts
16 reviews
1. Re: Best Time to Buy International Air Travel

TBH, that's about what I've seen for summer. A little on the high side but not horrendously so. Of course I'm coming from IL, and I think the east coast is sometimes cheaper. If that's nonstop, it's probably pretty good. I'd figure $1200 ish for summer fares. The cheapest I've gotten in the last few years for London is $900 ish and that was in Jan. Maybe someone local can give you a better idea. If your dates are locked in, I'd probably buy relatively soon.

Watford, United...
Level Contributor
4,796 posts
12 reviews
2. Re: Best Time to Buy International Air Travel

Peak peak peak time to fly here.... You are a little late to start searching for decent fares now in my opinion.

Skyscanner shows RDU - JFK - LHR on those dates with AA for $1,361

Destination Expert
for San Jose
Level Contributor
5,904 posts
108 reviews
3. Re: Best Time to Buy International Air Travel

Best time is the low season. For England, that's January-February.

Price really hasn't gone up. No real consolation, but it's the taxes and fees that have gone up, way up. UK has some of the highest. Not to get political or anything, but a lot of it is about global warming, security and higher taxes. If you want to see the real airfare, look at the price breakdowns. Or if you go award travel, the airfare is free and a lot of the taxes and fees remain.

So the real question isn't necessarily best time, but best place--who has the least taxes. And it's not the UK. Try IST or something.

Edited: 5:37 pm, April 22, 2013
Edinburgh, United...
Level Contributor
9,812 posts
17 reviews
4. Re: Best Time to Buy International Air Travel

UK APD has gone up but it's pretty much peanuts out of $1500 ticket. In economy from UK to the eastcoast we're talking about a £25 increase since 2007 in economy. Fuel surcharges are another matter.

Edited: 5:56 pm, April 22, 2013
Yorktown, Virginia
Destination Expert
for Machu Picchu
Level Contributor
6,054 posts
14 reviews
5. Re: Best Time to Buy International Air Travel

If we knew the best time to buy international air travel, we would ALL book our flights then. Honestly, your guess is as good (or bad) as anyone else's.

And remember, those airfare alerts with low fares may be bogus -- or might not include the whopping fuel surcharges.

Tempe, Arizona
Level Contributor
137 posts
149 reviews
6. Re: Best Time to Buy International Air Travel

Watch the Airfare Watchdog website

Milford, Ohio
Level Contributor
1,602 posts
98 reviews
7. Re: Best Time to Buy International Air Travel

The best time to buy is when the price meets your risk vs. reward tolerance. $1400 is not unreasonable for a flight to Europe in high season. Once you decide to book your ticket, top looking at the prices. No doubt, they will go down a few dollars and you will spend time worrying about it.... have a safe trip!

8. Re: Best Time to Buy International Air Travel

-:- Message from TripAdvisor staff -:-

This topic has been closed to new posts due to inactivity. We hope you'll join the conversation by posting to an open topic or starting a new one.

To review the TripAdvisor Forums Posting Guidelines, please follow this link: http://www.tripadvisor.com/pages/forums_posting_guidelines.html

We remove posts that do not follow our posting guidelines, and we reserve the right to remove any post for any reason.

Removed on: 1:17 am, April 25, 2014