Google Flights is our go-to when we're on the lookout for good airline deals. Now, the site has come through for us yet again: Using data collected from its algorithm, the search engine has compiled useful intel on travel booking for the holiday season. According to the findings, searches for Thanksgiving trips hit their peak around mid-October.
Whether you're planning a family reunion or booking a getaway, these smart tips and tricks from Google will make locking down a flight or hotel around the holidays less of a headache. (We've also put together a handy guide on using the platform to your best advantage.)
Avoid These Dates
Some travel dates are much busier than others. According to Google's findings over the last two years, the dates Nov 17, Nov 22, and Nov 26 have the highest search volume. It's likely that the airport will be at their busiest around these dates, so try your best to book your travel on alternative dates.
Budget Your Time Generously
Google has created an infographic depicting the 10 busiest airports for domestic travel around Thanksgiving. If you happen to be flying out of one of them, be sure to work in cushion time for moving through longer lines at the airport.
Another helpful tip? Go to the "Explore Map" on the pull-down menu. This will take you to a display map of red dots, showing the closets airports to your destination. A price estimate for flights will also be shown below the dots.
Plan Ahead Of Fare Hikes
The platform was able to work out that fare increases tend to take place seven, 14, and 21 days ahead of your departure date. So, if you're planning on flying out Nov 22, expect fares to hike up on Oct 31, Nov 7, and again on Nov 14. Those of you looking to travel around Thanksgiving should make arrangements pronto.
As a matter of fact, if you're thinking about going away for Christmas or New Year's, searches for international flights towards the end of the year are already on the rise. Your best bet to get decent fares is to sign up for the site's email alerts and try to book before December comes along.