Proven the best time to buy airline tickets

What is the best time to buy airline tickets? This is a question travellers often ask when planning flights. In this article we attempt to answer this question.

We compared recommendations from different sources about the best time to buy airline tickets and present them in this article. The advices depend heavily on the region and airline and are presented below for each of these segments.

US domestic

Source Best time to buy Best day to buy
Expedia 57 days in advance Sunday
Momondo 53 days in advance
CheapAir 21-112 days in advance
FareCompare 1-3 months in advance Tuesday
Skyscanner Tuesday
Hopper Thursday

US and North America international

Research made by Expedia in 2016 provides the following buying recommendations for flights departing from US and North America to international destinations.
  • North America to Europe: 176 days in advance
  • North America to Caribbean: 77 days in advance
  • North America to Asia-Pacific: 160 days in advance
  • North America to the Middle East and Africa: 144 days in advance
  • North America to South America: 90 days in advance
Similar study by CheapAir in contrast revealed that prices for international flights in general don't change from the start of sale period to approx 90 days to departure when they start to increase.

Within Europe

Most of the studies about the best time to buy airline tickets consider only US flights. There are just a few dedicated to inner-Europe routes.

According to Expedia, the best time to buy ticket within Europe is 140 days in advance. It is not clear though whether the study included low-cost carriers.

Low-cost carriers

Low-cost carriers in Europe apply different price changing models than traditional airlines. Airhint published the series of studies about the best time to buy airline tickets for some of them. One can also try Airhint flight price predictor tailored for those airlines.

From UK

There is a study by Skyscanner showing best moment to buy airline tickets departing from UK to different destination. The same study showed that the best moment to book short-haul flight is 7 weeks to depature.


There is no consensus between researchers about the exact best time to buy airline tickets. It depends on your destination, season and airline. Most of the sources agree that buying early is the best option to avoid stress of checking prices daily, but not necessarily the best strategy to get the cheapest airfare.

For more precise recommendation for concrete flights, consider using a flight price predictor.

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