When it comes to planning your next trip, it’s common to find yourself wondering when the best time to plan your vacation is in order to get the best deal. I wish there was one simple answer to that question, however, there are many variables when it comes to travel pricing.
I’m here to help teach you when to book your next trip like a pro!
When booking far in advance, you give yourself the opportunity to watch for the best pricing. As a general rule of thumb, the earlier you plan your vacation the more options and prices will be available to you. Allowing more time for booking means you aren’t restricting yourself to the prices available when in a tight time frame.
One caveat is that airfare will fluctuate. Airfare will be available 11 months before your travel dates. Generally, airfare starts out at a high price, then bounces around until departure or it sells out. The trick is to book the airfare when it’s toward a lower price that you’re comfortable with.
Here are a variety of trips and the “sweet spot” time frames that will get you the best rates!
Ocean Cruises: Ocean cruises tend to be bookable up to 2 years out. It’s typical to see the best pricing early. As the sailing fills, prices continue to increase. Occasionally, if a cruise isn’t selling as planned, lower prices will be offered, which we can secure for you while retaining your selected cabin. That is a win/win!
River Cruises: River cruises announce their itineraries up to 18 months in advance and will often offer an early booking discount or perhaps an airfare promotion to early bird bookers. With limited cabins on each cruise (an average of 80 cabins) they do sell out fast, especially if it’s a unique itinerary!
Europe: Traveling to Europe is always very popular. However, you can save money on your accommodations by traveling during the shoulder season. A bonus of traveling at this time is that it will be less crowded. We can secure your land itinerary as far as one year out. Airfare will change often and the ideal time to book the airfare is usually best between 6-9 months before departure.
Hawaii: Hawaii is frequently on everyone’s bucket list and often travelers return again and again because they fall in love with it! The land components can be booked up to 18 months in advance, especially if you want to be there over a holiday. We recommend booking everything together as a package at least 10 months in advance to save money with a bundled price.
Warm Winter Getaways: This one's for you, snowbirds! Think about warming up and thawing out on a Caribbean Island or Mexican beach. We suggest that nine months before your departure date is a great time to book. However, if the non-stop Milwaukee charter flights are your jam, book them when they are introduced in June and July for the best availability. Waiting until the last minute can backfire during popular travel times leaving you without a warm beach!
It’s never too early to schedule a discovery call with our team to figure out where exactly you want to go and when the best time for you to book is! We’ll regularly check on travel pricing and let you know when the best time to book your trip is in order for you to get the very best deal on your next well-deserved getaway.
Cheers to your next adventure!