Booking Your Air Tickets Online – Here’s the Expert Tip on the Best Time to Do It!

Booking Your Air Tickets Online – Here’s the Expert Tip on the Best Time to Do It!

Timing is everything. It doesn’t matter whether you’re searching for a new job, trying to buy your first home or planning a holiday getaway – timing your decisions correctly can make the difference when it comes to reaching a desired outcome.

Timing is especially important when it comes to booking you air tickets!

When it comes to booking flight tickets for your next holiday away from your whip cracking boss and 50-hour work weeks, timing your purchase just right can save you plenty on your airfare.

So what is the “right” timing when it comes to booking your air tickets? Read on to find out!


The Timing Varies According to Your Destination and Travel Period

If you’ve read our popular article on the 5 Flight Booking Hacks That Airlines Don’t Want You to Know About, you’d know that timing plays a critical role when it comes to booking.

According to economist Makoto Watanabe (no relation to Ken), there’s actually a mathematical equation you can use to determine the perfect time to book.

∏A = gUG + min(k-g, (1-g)(1-r)) 

I know what you’re probably thinking “what the hell am I going to do with this?!?” Relax buddy, according to Watanabe, this equation roughly means that you should book at least 8 weeks in advance to get the best deal.

Meanwhile, travel insider Peter Greenberg says you should book no later than 45 day in advance – 6 weeks to get the best deal.

So who do you believe?

Well, if you take what each expert has to say and add in some other major flight booking details, here’s what the “best” flight booking time looks like:

  • Book between 6 to 8 weeks in advance to get the best deal on international travel
  • Book between 9-12 months in advance if you plan to visit a tourist hotspot during a “peak” holiday period (prime example: New York during Christmas/New Year’s Day)
  • Book on a Tuesday or Wednesday (according to Greenberg, the best time is on Wednesday at 1am due to airlines reloading their booking systems with the latest low-cost fares)

So there you have it – unless you plan on travelling overseas to a destination that’s going to be chock full of tourists, it won’t make a huge difference to buy your tickets too early. And never ever buy tickets on weekends because that’s when tickets can really jump in price.

And one last piece of advice – be flexible with your travel dates. The difference a day or two make can equate to hundreds of dollars.


Final Note: Before you book, have a good long look at the credit card you’re using to purchase your tickets with. Will your credit card give any great benefits such as air miles, free airport lounge access, or worldwide shopping benefits?

If your credit card offers NONE of the above, it might be time to get yourself a dedicated “travel” credit card. Make sure you do your homework first and check out the best air miles credit cards in Singapore.


Will you be changing the timing of your air ticket purchase now? Share your thoughts with us on Facebook! For even more useful information on everything personal finance, visit MoneySmart today!