How to Find the Best Flight Deals for 2023 with Lower Prices Compared to Last Year

How to Find the Best Flight Deals for 2023 with Lower Prices Compared to Last Year
How to Find the Best Flight Deals for 2023 with Lower Prices Compared to Last Year

Americans Enjoy Lower Airfares for Holiday Travel

Good news for Americans planning to travel during the busy holiday season: airfares have dropped significantly compared to last year. According to Consumer Price Index data, airfares were down more than 13% last month compared to the same period in 2020. In fact, airfares are also about 5% lower than they were in October 2019, just before the pandemic hit.

For Thanksgiving travel, the average domestic, roundtrip airfare is now $266, which is a 10% decrease from the previous year. Hopper, a travel booking site, reports that prices are significantly lower this year compared to last. Lindsay Schwimer, a spokesperson for Hopper, encourages travelers to take advantage of the good deals available, especially if they are flexible with their destination and dates.

Christmas travel is also more affordable this year. The average domestic, roundtrip airfare around Christmas is now $324, which is a 15% decrease from last year and 11% lower than in 2019. Kayak, a flight aggregator and search site, reveals that prices for Christmastime flights have dropped by 23% compared to a year ago.

Why Are Fares Cheaper?

Despite strong demand for holiday travel this year, fares have remained low. One reason for this is the decrease in jet fuel prices. Additionally, airlines have increased their capacity, allowing more planes to fly and keeping ticket costs in check. Lindsay Schwimer explains that domestic airline capacity has returned to pre-pandemic levels, contributing to the shift back to normalcy in terms of prices.

Another factor contributing to lower airfares is the practice of unbundling fares by airlines. Passengers now have the option to pay for specific features, such as checking a bag or selecting a seat assignment, separately from the base fare. This allows airlines to offer lower base airfares, giving travelers the opportunity to save money if they don’t require additional services.

When to Book and When to Fly

While it may be late to book Thanksgiving travel, there are still opportunities to save on Christmas travel. Experts recommend booking flights as soon as a good deal is found. The U.S. Department of Transportation allows customers to cancel their reservations within 24 hours of booking without any penalty, so there is no harm in securing a flight and then deciding later.

For Thanksgiving travel, it is best to avoid the busiest and most expensive days, which are typically the Wednesday before the holiday and the following Sunday. Instead, consider traveling on Thanksgiving Day itself or returning home late on Friday to take advantage of potentially lower fares. Extending the holiday by returning on Monday or Tuesday after Thanksgiving can also lead to savings.

Travel Deal Tuesday

In addition to considering travel on Tuesday, it is worth searching for deals on future flights for even more savings. The Tuesday following Thanksgiving, known as Travel Deal Tuesday, offers a high number of flight deals. This year, Hopper expects discounts of up to 80% on trips to popular destinations like Hawaii, Orlando, Florida, Phoenix, and Las Vegas.

Author’s Quote

“We’ve seen a shift back to normalcy in terms of prices, and a lot of the domestic airline capacity has come back to what we saw pre-pandemic, which means more planes flying than what we saw in the past few years,” says Lindsay Schwimer, spokesperson for Hopper.

Author’s Conclusion

Overall, airfares for holiday travel this year are significantly lower than in previous years. Despite the high demand, lower jet fuel prices and increased airline capacity have helped keep ticket costs in check. By being flexible with travel dates and destinations, travelers can find great last-minute deals. Whether it’s Thanksgiving or Christmas travel, there are opportunities to save and enjoy a more affordable holiday season.

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