Labor Day Flights Haven't Been This Cheap In Years
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2014. Remember that? Probably not, which sheds some perspective on how long it has been since we've seen Labor Day flights this cheap. Hopper Research ran the numbers, and they've discovered that flight prices for Labor Day 2018 "are the cheapest they've been in four years," and are down 14% from last year.
We all know that a summer vacation would do us good, but if your summer has mysteriously gotten away from you, the news should be welcome. (In other words, there's still time, and we have ideas for those short on planning time!) Per Hopper Research, the ideal time to book your Labor Day travels is right now, with domestic round-trip prices for Labor Day Weekend (Friday, August 31 - Monday, September 3) averaging $255.
If you wait, expect rates to increase $10 to $15 a day in the two weeks leading up to Labor Day weekend. If you're flexible, you can "save the most money by leaving on Saturday, September 1 and returning Wednesday, September 5."
Flexibility is Key
Be sure to play around with dates when using a booking engine like Expedia and Orbitz. I'm flying back from Venice at the end of the month, but had I wanted to extend, I noticed that it was hundreds of dollars cheaper to fly back to the US on Labor Day itself rather than on September 2nd or 4th. (It's also worth noting that airlines tend to mix things up around Labor Day.)
I recently rounded up the best ways to fly Delta's international business class seating on domestic routes, and you'll see that quite a few of those flights are one-time occurrences surrounding the Labor Day holiday. So, not only will you save money this year compared to prior years, but you could use this as an excuse to jump on a special flight. On Labor Day, for instance, an Airbus A330-300 (rather than the usual 767) will operate DL444, featuring Delta's revered reverse herringbone Delta One seating up front on a one-time flight between Los Angeles (LAX) and New York (JFK).
If you're keeping it domestic, Hopper Research found that the southeast will have "some of the best bargains this year, with cheap flights to Fort Lauderdale, Orlando, Myrtle Beach, and Atlanta." Keep in mind that many of America's most stunning National Parks start seeing snow shortly after Labor Day, making this an ideal time of year to visit while roads are still clear, and trails are still open.
Given how hectic airports will be during the holiday, be sure to book your flight with a credit card that offers high returns for air travel as well as travel insurance. The Platinum Card® from American Express offers travel insurance, plus 5x points on flights booked directly with airlines or with American Express Travel. The Chase Sapphire Reserve earns 3x points on all-things travel (after $300 travel credit exhausted) (including flights, of course), along with baggage delay insurance, lost luggage reimbursement, trip cancellation/trip interruption insurance, emergency evacuation coverage and trip delay reimbursement.
Did you find a bargain on travel this Labor Day? Share with us in comments below and in the TPG Lounge on Facebook!
H/T: Consumer Reports