When is the best time to buy flights for 2020?

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Most of us don’t mind spending money on holidays. These are something we work towards, after all. Most of us figure that it’s worth getting the best hotel, and granting ourselves enough spending money to have fun. 


Still, there are some aspects of a holiday we aren’t willing to part with the cash for, and flights are one of them. These are a means to an end rather than an actual part of our time away. As such, spending as little as possible here is usually the aim. All the better for being able to splash out on accommodation once you arrive!


The trouble is that finding cheap flights isn’t always easy. What’s more, different locations have varying rules, so there’s no easy trick. That’s why we’re going to consider the best times to buy flights for whatever continent you’re planning to travel to in 2020. 



The best part about a trip to America is the fact that there are plenty of locations that offer year-round heat, meaning there’s no ‘peak season’ as such. That said, this can make it trickier to work out the cheapest times to buy. 


The cheapest deals vary across the continent, and many of them may surprise you. Canada is perhaps the least surprising option, offering the best flights during January, the dryest financial month of the year. In the United States, however, September is a prime option due to the sudden reduction in holidaymakers after summer. Elsewhere in Brazil and Argentina, March seems to be your best bet just before prime tourism hits. In every case, booking your flight on a Sunday can save you as much as £57.




Whether you’re heading to China, Japan, or elsewhere in Asia, long-haul flights across this continent can get pricey unless you keep your buyer’s wits about you. Despite a pretty broad scope, Asian flight prices tend to be pretty persistent across the board, and also somewhat surprising. Far from the peak summers we expect to avoid, Asia falls foul to peak travel during December. This, even though December and January are some of the coldest months in most Asian destinations!


Plan your trip outside of that prime season, preferably between September-November, so that you can enjoy relatively good weather while still benefiting from cheap flights! Note, too, that you should book on a weekday, with prices creeping up by as much as 50% on Friday and Saturday.



Africa is an especially tricky country to find cheap flights for as it enjoys a few peak seasons each year, but it’s still possible to get a deal here. The main thing to note is that you need to consider both the traditional vacation season of July/August and the South African summer in December/January. Religion also plays a part here, with flight prices to Muslim countries such as Egypt rising drastically during Ramadan in May. That leaves you looking at the cheapest flights between March through to the end of April in most African locations. 



Australia is another continent that includes a few different peak seasons. Bear in mind, after all, that countries here enjoy their summer as we head into winter. As such, you can expect flights to be expensive both during the ‘traditional’ summer holiday of July-September and also during Australian summer over the Christmas period. In general, then, mid-week flights between April and late June tend to be the best option for deals. This is the autumnal Australian period, so temperatures should still be reasonably pleasant, especially in the North. 


With Australian flights being such long-haul undertakings, it’s also worth noting that booking well in advance can be an excellent way to get a deal. If you know you’re planning a flight to Australian in the not-so-distant future, it’s also worth signing up for a few newsletters. Flash sales on long flights like these are relatively common and can save you pretty large amounts.



Flights to anywhere in Europe are going to cost an arm and a leg during the summer holiday season, and the Christmas rush to Paris and other such locations is another thing to avoid. Instead, booking flights to anywhere in Europe during a midweek session in either March or April will seal you a good deal. 


Note that last-minute deals are probably most possible for those travelling within Europe. The short nature of flights like these mean that many airlines are willing to provide last-minute discounts if you’re brave enough to wait it out for that long.


Andy Chapman

Andy Chapman

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