The Cheapest Day To Buy An International Plane Ticket, Mapped By Destination

It could save you tons of money.

Pinpointing when to buy your plane ticket can be a major headache. Thankfully, this map lays the rules out brilliantly.

Analysts at reviewed more than 351 million individual airfares sold on more than a million international routes in 2016. They tracked flights from the day they went on sale (usually about 11 months in advance) until the day of takeoff to see when each fare hit its lowest point.

The resulting map shows how many days before takeoff you should buy your ticket to score the best deal, on average, depending on your destination.


The map shows optimal booking days for flights from the U.S. If you’re headed to the Caribbean, for example, it’s best to book 76 days in advance for the lowest price. For Asia, try 90 days in advance.

If you’re taking a flight within the U.S., 54 days in advance is the magic number.

CheapAir notes that summer is often an exception to the rules: Because it’s such a popular time to travel, they recommend booking a bit earlier than the timeframes suggested on the map.

We suggest starting your search on a site like Google Flights or ITA Matrix and setting up price alerts to get notifications when fares fall. If you don’t have a specific destination in mind, follow these deal-finding sites and let the bargains be your guide.

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