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HomeTravelExpedia releases a summer travel cheat sheet, revealing cheapest times to fly

Expedia releases a summer travel cheat sheet, revealing cheapest times to fly

While spring break has yet to wrap for some states, many U.S. travelers are already planning their summer vacations. According to Expedia® data, searches for summer getaways have steadily increased over the last month, with many top destinations seeing double-digit increases week-over-week in March.

Destinations seeing a recent spike in interest for June to August travel include Singapore (+60%), Houston (+55%), Bali (+35%) and Washington, D.C. (+35%), indicating travelers are researching getaways both near and far. 

With summer vacation FOMO taking hold, Expedia offers a look at the season’s trending destinations and tips for helping travelers get more out of their summer trips, including how to score the season’s cheapest fares.  

“People are ready to make their summer vacations happen no matter what. With many travel restrictions easing over the past month, travelers have been inspired to dust off their bucket lists and get a jumpstart on planning. Prices are already reflecting that pent-up demand, so timing is going to be key for getting the best deal.”

Christie Hudson, senior public relations manager for Expedia.

Summer hotspots
These are some of the trending destinations travelers are eyeing for summer getaways, based on recent spikes in flight searches1

  • Beach bliss: Bali (+35%), Maldives (+25%), Santorini (+20%), Los Angeles (+20%), Bar Harbor (+20%)
  • U.S. city breaks: Chicago (+40%), Houston (+55%), Washington, D.C. (+35%), Austin (+30%), New York City (+30%)
  • Adventures abroad: Singapore (+60%), Stockholm (+35%), Ontario (+35%), Berlin (+30%), Dubai (+20%)

National and state parks and other outdoor destinations are expected to remain popular this summer as top road-trip destinations, including Mount Rushmore, Banff and Yellowstone National Park. 

Pixabay at Pexels

Best times to travel this summer2 

  • August is the cheapest month to fly, with average ticket prices (ATPs) nearly 10% lower compared to July and 5% cheaper than June.
  • The most expensive day to fly is July 1st, the Friday prior to the July 4th holiday, when average ticket prices are 25% higher than average for summer months.
  • Between June and August, the highest ATPs are generally found on Fridays and the cheapest tend to occur on Tuesdays.

Where to fly under $350 roundtrip2 
These are a few of the cities where average ticket prices are below $350 for the summer months:

  1. Fort Lauderdale
  2. Toronto 
  3. Tampa
  4. San Antonio
  5. Houston
  6. Austin
  7. Providence
  8. Myrtle Beach
  9. Kelowna
  10. Nashville 
  11. New Orleans
  12. Charleston

 Expert tips for booking this summer’s getaway 

  1. Book early and book smart: As with demand, prices will likely increase as the months go by, making last-minute deals harder to find. Travelers should lock in plans early by using “free cancellation” filters on Expedia and choosing flights with waived change fees. While it may be tempting to save a few dollars by choosing restrictive basic economy or saver fares, selecting flexible options will not only save travelers money in the long run but also ensure peace of mind as plans can change. 
  2. Be flexible with dates: When viable, travelers should remain flexible with their travel dates. For instance, choosing a weekday over a weekend or avoiding traveling over the holidays can yield savings. Use fare calendars and create price alerts to track pricing and snag a deal. 
  3. Bundle to save: More likely than not, travelers will need airfare, hotel and sometimes a rental car for a single trip. Booking them together – also known as bundling – on Expedia can save travelers hundreds of dollars.  
  4. Get more with membership: The easiest way to save is by signing up for a free Expedia Rewards account, unlocking access to member pricing of 10% off or more on thousands of hotels. Additionally, members collect points to save on future travel and earn exclusive perks and benefits at top-rated properties around the world. 

READ MORE: Travel in the Time of COVID: Getting there is easy — it’s getting home that’s hard