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Best time to buy airline tickets?

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PA, USA
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Best time to buy airline tickets?

Our family of five will be traveling to Rome in mid-June. Have checked the flight prices and they are really high. When do you advise buying tickets? And any hints on how to get the best deal.

Thanks very much.

New York City, New...
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1. Re: Best time to buy airline tickets?

They likely won't go down - that is high season and for the past few years, prices have continued to rise quite a lot.

For awhile, if you want, you can keep any eye on www.kayak.com to see what routes/prices are available for your dates. This site too: http://www.skyscanner.com

I don't think you need to jump now - but I never make a recommendation as to a particular time to buy because, honestly, I don't want to feel responsible and since I don't have a crystal ball, I don't feel comfortable making suggestions on this.

I buy when I feel I want to have the ticket in hand and I have been watching fares for awhile. For my upcoming early December trip, I bought my ticket a few weeks ago.

I am flying (as I have frequently) on Alitalia. I signed up to receive email alerts and rec'd a notice of a 15% coupon that was for a period of a few days so I decided to buy then and I saved about $150.00 - that was the real catalyst for buying when I did.

Unless something miraculous happens, I can't imagine the fares going down significantly. But, I sure hope they do....

Seattle, Washington
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2. Re: Best time to buy airline tickets?

I use yapta.com to monitor pricing. I think you should start monitoring about six months before your departure.

Le Marche, Italy
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for Rome, Marche
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3. Re: Best time to buy airline tickets?

I also don't like to give advice about the best time to buy, but my experience has mostly shown that if there's going to be a fare sale, it happens about 2-3 months before the travel date. I wouldn't start monitoring fares until about 4 months out.

I also get email notices about fare sales from the two airlines I use the most; they're also the only two whose frequent flyer programs I belong to. You might want to try to sign up for email notices from a few airlines that have convenient flights to Italy from your nearest major airport. T

Seattle, Washington
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4. Re: Best time to buy airline tickets?

One tip is to go directly to the website of the airline that you're considering and look at seat availability for the flight(s) you're interested in. If the plane is starting to fill up, they're less likely to drop the price. If, however, it remains virtually empty, there's no reason to buy yet AND they might drop the price.

Edited: 1:51 pm, October 09, 2012
Reidsville
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28 posts
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5. Re: Best time to buy airline tickets?

I planned on a March 2013 trip with the dates pretty much set. I had traveled to Rome and left from Venice for @ $800 in 2010. Since I knew that had been a good price then that was my ballpark figure to base prices for this year. ( I know this was not peak season). What I did was spend a few minutes about twice a week and checked prices on sights like kayak. Prices were running high @1200 and then dipped to about 1000. Then one day on tripadvisors flight search 810 tickets appeared for Delta it only lasted for 2 days. What I am getting at is that with a few minutes at a time you might find a great deal but do not wait to long. These prices were for multiple-city tickets out of NC.

California
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6. Re: Best time to buy airline tickets?

I agree with everyone else. Start by getting a "base" price by looking at a few different airlines over the course of a month. You will then know what a "Deal" is when you see it. I am going to Rome in Sept or Oct 2013. I have alrady started a spreadsheet on airlines and prices (I do this also to set my budget). We are going to Paris, London and Rome...the price will determine the order (LAX-PAris looks like the winner). I also like to look at Travelzoo as they have great specials posted. In 2008 we went non-stop LAX to London for $700.00 (all taxes included) through a special posted on Travelzoo through Air New Zealand (booked directly with ANZ)...because I had been tracking I knew this was a DEAL and jumped on it!

For me..This is the "fun" part! Making a well researched purchase.

Los Angeles...
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7. Re: Best time to buy airline tickets?

Any updates on your ticket search? Or any tips to impart if you've already bought your tickets?

I've been keeping an eye out for tickets that would go below $930 for a July 2013 ticket from Los Angeles. Cheapest I've seen was $933 with Aeroflot in November of 2012. Prices have slightly risen to $1,001 as of today and sometimes dipping back to $940s a few weks ago, but I'm not so sure about Aeroflot as a long flight choice.

California
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8. Re: Best time to buy airline tickets?

I've also been searching for flights for my trip in May 2013. I haven't seen anything cheaper than $1107 non stop round trip from Miami to Rome on Alitalia. I've been debating back and forth on whether to just go ahead and buy . . . My indecisiveness is driving me crazy! LoL : )

California
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9. Re: Best time to buy airline tickets?

Okay it's like the airline knew I posted my earlier message because the flight just dropped to $1,080. And now I have $100 coupon for signing up for their newsletter. I seriously don't know what to do!!!

Seattle, Washington
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10. Re: Best time to buy airline tickets?

Here are two WSJ articles worth reading about when to buy international tickets:

…wsj.com/article/SB1000142405270230364950457…

…wsj.com/middleseat/…