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Airplane tickets - how early to buy??

I have been watching airfares for months. Plan on traveling Chicago - Amsterdam, return Rome to Chicago, June 2016. Aer Lingus has the best fairs, that i have found. They are going up each time i look. I am relucant to invest for 3 tickets this far out, but am also reluctant to pay more. Any suggestions? Do it, or wait???

An additional question, anyone fly into Dublin (good prices from Aer lingus) then take cheap intercontinental flights to your next destination? Is it worth the hustle to add more airport hassle to the equation or bite the bullet and fly directly to your destination?

Posted by
2644 posts

I buy as soon as I see a good fare...but it's always after weeks of watching. My experience is that Aer Lingus does indeed have some good deals out of Chicago. What fares are you seeing?

Posted by
8201 posts

You should be good for Feb. or March on ticketing for June tickets. Obviously that's high season. If you could go before 6/1, you might save a little.

Posted by
6 posts

Valarie, I am finding around $1155, need to get 3 tickets, that is a lot of money to commit so early!! Thanks for the input.

Posted by
2644 posts

So I did a little looking around and see about what you see, price-wise. I see you can go in May for about $850 per person, but I am assuming you are tied to the June dates, correct? I also see that there's a few dates in June when you can go nonstop for about $1400, which is more, I realize, but those nonstop flights are nice! I look at other things when I'm trying to cut costs...Norwegian has some really cheap fares, but Chicago is not one of their cities currently served...you'd have to fly out of NY or Boston. So, in answer to your question...if you need to fly on a certain date in June, those fares are not too bad. June's expensive. I paid $1275 for my daughter on Philadelphia to Venice nonstop last May and I felt it was a good deal.

Posted by
544 posts

$1155 is a great price. Check out SAS as well for deals out of Chicago: $890 for Chicago-AMS 6/1 returning Rome-Chicago 6/14.

Posted by
7209 posts

We bought our tickets over a month ago for June 2016 travel. So it's never too early or too late to buy tickets. You just have to research enough to know what is a good price and be prepared to buy it when you see it.

Posted by
650 posts

We are traveling in mid June to mid July. We got tickets to Amsterdam from Victoria and from London to Victoria for $875. That was a month ago. When I saw the price I jumped, though ideally, we would have like to come in through Budapest or Prague and exit Amsterdam. We decided that at that price we will be happy with seeing Paris and London yet again. Actually, I'm always happy to see Paris and London again. Jumping was based on prices over the last five years. Given the likelihood of paying $1,100 to $1,200 for four, versus $875.

I'm willing to change plans a little. Look early and bite if you see something really low, otherwise wait for under $1,100 where you want to go. A couple years ago, we found round trip tickets from Seattle to London, round trip in the summer for about $925. Our plan had been in London, out Rome with Paris and Florence on the way, but prices changes our minds and we got a lovely train ride through the alps on our way back to London into the bargain.

How much prices matter to me depends on the number of people flying. The last three trips there have been four of us. In a year there will be just two as we are becoming empty nesters. Then, it will require a greater shift in prices to make up change our travel plans.

But, don't wait for a bargain for over five months. At some point, the news never gets better.

Posted by
1625 posts

I learned my lesson last time I booked plane tickets, to look at the prices on different days and see the price difference then chose your travel days based on the price. I had my dates set and with a little wiggle room I could have saved a lot of money. Next time my travel dates will be determined by the price.

I buy tickets 5-6 months out...sometimes they do go down closer to the date but when I looked at seats available there was often not two seats together.

Posted by
11613 posts

I buy as far out as possible but I do watch fares for a couple of weeks before I purchase. Best deal so far was roundtrip Detroit-Roma for 90,000 miles and roundtrip Detroit-Brussels for $1000. I always book with the airline directly and get the Economy Comfort option (more like a sardine than an anchovy).

Posted by
1078 posts

Just looked at Kayak today and the ORD-DUB-FCO-ORD now 1330. I grab as soon as I can. You can do TA for under $1000 however it's about a two day trip.