How do you play the air fare Game?


#1

How far out do you all book air fare? While it seems SW rarely decreases, Jet Blue usually does if you wait? I am wondering how far out you book flights or do you risk it do this less than 6 weeks out.


#2

I just booked airfare for our November trip the week after Thanksgiving. I was watching for months and had alerts set up on hopper and kayak. The airfare was really high out of newark nj for weeks. Jetblue was over 330 one way ( with baggage). We are flying out Saturday after Thansgiving. It finally dropped mid last week to 210 ( with checked bag). Southwest dropped also after I bought to 118 one way, it had been 260. So it did come down at about 60-55 days out.


#3

good to know, thanks for sharing!


#4

I just booked for our trip in Feb 2019. The price was $207 so I didn’t think it would go down more than that and didn’t want it going up so I just booked it.


#5

We’re flying out the saturday after thanksgiving as well. I bought our flights early in the morning as soon as they were released by southwest.
We’d already determined through experience that southwest consistently offers the cheapest flights out of our airport to MCO. Well, cheapest that we’re willing to do. Frontier is much cheaper but I keep reading about them canceling flights at the last minute and leaving folks stranded. With work and school commitments we really didn’t want to risk an unexpected extra day or two to get home.
Anyway, last year I waited and tracked the cost of the flights nearly daily (southwest was cheapest even as their prices rose, no other airline besides frontier came close). Unfortunately for me the absolutely cheapest flight was when the flight was first released. I paid just shy of a couple hundred more for 2 people between the flight out and the return flight when southwest did a small dip in price after consistently rising.
This year I pulled the trigger as soon as they were released. But curiosity made me check the prices of flights almost as much as last year, lol. And the prices have been consistently $70-100 higher on the flight out and $30-50 higher on the return flight. So I’ve been happy with my choice and unless we decide to risk frontier or southwest changes their pattern of cheapest as soon as flights are released then I’ll probably stick to this strategy.


#6

I’ve found Southwest is usually cheapest the first few minutes fares are released then about 4 months about they dip down to that original fare for a few hours.

I’m another Saturday after thanksgiving flyer and I booked about 2 minutes after Southwest released fares for November. It was $182 going down and $96 coming back. I’ll check a few times a week when I’m bored and I’ve yet to see them that low since.


#7

Southwest just announced a 2 day sale for some dates this winter. It’s worth a look on their site if you’re going between Nov and March.


#8

Check Southwest frequently. I book with points, so no hassles to re-book at lower fare. In 2016, I got several flight legs for as low as $45 cash price, which was around 2000 points, if I remember correctly.

My strategy was to book each individual for their own one-way reservation for each flight. Then, if there was only one reduced fare available, I could get it without potentially messing up other parts of the trip. Unfortunately, that didn’t work for me this time for 2 reasons: 1) Southwest would not let me modify a child reservation without also affecting the accompanying adult reservation and vice versa. 2) The devaluation of SW points made the moderate $ reduction in fares that I saw a couple times not worth it to re-book because of the time it would have taken to call in (see reason 1).


#9

If you are worried about it then just book it.

So what if the price goes down a bit. Isn’t being stress free for 6 months worth a couple hundred dollars?

If you do book it then don’t bother looking at the flights again. There is nothing you can do about it, so why even look? Live stress free.


#10

this is pretty close to me. there are exceptions, but in general, fares don’t go down, only up. Once they are at a price around what I’ve budgeted, and I have the money/balance, I pull the trigger and buy them.


#11

There is a 72 hour sale going on now on SW that is definitely worth checking out. I booked Spirit at end of August for early December trip. This SW sale just slightly beat those prices and you don’t have to pay for a bag.


#12

I book with Southwest and then check frequently. At least daily but often more. I’ve found a lot of price drops actually which I then stash away as future travel funds in my southwest account.

Speaking of which, BRB…


#13

We booked our tickets soon after SW released them. They have 1 nonstop flight to MCO from our airport every day (I don’t think the other airlines do at all) and I wanted that one. Turns out that it was also one of the cheapest. We have a toddler, so we’ll be traveling with several bags too.