According to the AAA 2011-12 Year-End Holidays Travel Forecast, 5.4 million Americans will travel by air over the holidays, creating great competition for snagging the best last-minute travel deals.
This high demand of the holiday travel season allows airlines the ability to hike travel prices for last-minute planners who are willing to pay any cost to be with loved ones. While booking flights within just one week’s time is a challenge for families and lone travelers on a budget, Ms. Calonia finds seven money-saving ways to reduce peak airfare prices of major airlines like American Airlines.
Some ways travelers can save money on airfare this year include:
1. Keeping Travel Details Open
Peak departure days at airlines are on days surrounding the weekend, and that’s truer than ever this year with Christmas Eve falling on a Monday. Expect to see the highest prices on airfare on flights leaving cities on Friday and arriving back the day after Christmas.
“Be flexible with your travel plans to find the best deals,” suggests Mark Drusch, Chief Supplier Relations Officer of CheapOair.com.
A shorter trip -- one aimed specifically on spending time with family on Christmas Day -- cuts the price of airfare in half for those traveling on a budget.
2. Subscribing to Airline E-mail Alerts
With time running short, it’s important to keep a pulse on promotions being offered by various airlines. E-mail alerts can help clue you into remaining last-minute flights at discount prices. While the selection of flights between cities is, at times, minimized on these promotional rates, travelers may strike savings gold by being aware of flash deals.
“Scrambling to find out how to save money on last-minute travel can be stressful, but by implementing these seven simple strategies into air travel planning, consumers can prevent inflated airfare costs from being a turbulent factor in their budget,” says Ms. Calonia.
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Ms. Calonia reports on personal finance, with a specialty in saving money, budgeting and lifestyle. She is available to comment on any of these topics and can be reached via e-mail at JenniferC(@)ConsumerTrack(
About Jennifer Calonia
Jennifer Calonia is a reputed journalist covering personal finance subjects like banking, saving money and debt. Her features and helpful savings tips encourage and empower households across America to achieve financial balance. In November 2012, she launched her bi-weekly newsletter series called, “Breaking Up with Debt”where she teaches readers how to use Dave Ramsey’s Seven Baby Step Plan to break free of debt.
Her work is featured in major publications like US News & World Report, Yahoo!, Yahoo! Finance, LearnVest, Business Insider, Can Do Finance and Consumerism Commentary.
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