Why do so many people believe in the Tuesday myth? According to Bloomberg's recent report on the new data, airfare is only cheapest on Tuesdays if you buy right at midnight and this only affects 1.6% of domestic routes. Plus, even if you do save, it'll only be about 6%, or $18 on average. So, sure, it's slightly better. But we don't want "slightly," do we?
Based on Hopper's data, the best savings on domestic flights are actually on Thursdays. On popular routes, you can typically save almost $15; across all 7,500 U.S. routes, you'll save $12 on average. Wednesday comes very close in savings on flights within the U.S. Out of the 3,500 international routes Hopper analyzed, about 900 feature their lowest prices on Thursdays, which is more than on any other day of the week. You can save an average of $20 a ticket. The worst day to book an international flight? Sunday.
"People want there to be this kind of golden rule you can use to know when to book your airfare," Patrick Surry, chief data scientist at Hopper, told Bloomberg. "But it’s hard to have a rule of thumb when the system is adapting in real time." Meaning computers are doing the bulk of the work, making sale patterns harder to predict.
"In the past, there used to be more human intervention where managers could create flash sales, often on Tuesdays and Wednesdays," Surry said. "These decisions are largely automated now."
While there's no ironclad rule, we can use data analysis to our advantage. And right now, it looks like when it comes to airfare deals, you can think of Thursday as the new Tuesday.