Lonely Planet Writer

Dreaming of winter sun? You might be better off waiting a couple of months to book

If you’re already dying to starting planning a winter break, it may be best to wait until the New Year before actually buying a ticket.

Hanalei Bay on Kauai, Hawaii.
Hanalei Bay on Kauai, Hawaii.

Flights purchased in January will be cheaper for US travellers, according to airfare prediction site Hopper. That’s likely to be unsurprising to many travellers, as the US will celebrate Thanksgiving in November and Christmas in December, meaning there will be a high demand for holiday travel, and the usual bump in prices as people buy their flights. A typical round-trip domestic flight cost about $214 in October, and prices will climb as the holidays approach. In October, Hopper projected that Thanksgiving flights would cost more than $312, with prices increasing daily in November, while domestic Christmas flights were set at $338, with prices set to increase.

 Las Vegas Strip and the Moon. Las Vegas Panorama at Night. Nevada, United States.

Las Vegas Strip and the Moon. Las Vegas Panorama at Night. Nevada, United States. Image by ©welcomia/Getty Images

Naturally, after those busy holiday months – when many people will want to relax and start on their New Year’s resolutions – travellers can snap up cheaper flights for trips that will help them get through the long winter months. An average flight purchased in January will be about $211 for a round-trip and will then rise to about $221 in February, $227 in March and $233 in April. However, since the US is such an expansive space, those average prices actually vary a lot based on where you live. Hopper actually breaks down the average prices by state on an interactive map, and there’s bad news for anyone heading to Wyoming in November, where an average flight will cost about $516, but good news for travellers wanting to head to Nevada, where flights will be about $171.