How do you do?
Traveling is in my blood, it runs through my family. Fun fact, I grew up with a pilot/aviation father who also comes from a well-traveled family himself. My dad actually goes by “Mr AirSpace”. Yeah, he’s a pretty big deal 😀 I’m a proud daughter. Read about him here. So anyway, I think we take it for granted at times how traveling and flying can be a novelty to others, so this post seeks to share one of the most important things to consider when planning your travels, the best time to buy those airline tickets homie.
I’ll be directing this post particularly to my South African homies – for both local and international travel. South Africa is full of amazing destinations, and ‘staycations’ have become a thing – where you explore home first! There are people who’ve traveled intercontinental yet have not visited the province next door. It happens! Exploring our home country and supporting our economy should also be prioritized. As for those who have exhausted traveling nationally and are ready to go further, this will also be relevant for you.
Did you know?
“The Johannesburg to Cape Town route is one of the busiest routes in the world?”
Given the above fact, you’ll want to make sure that you book flights from Johannesburg to Cape Town optimally to avoid extremely expensive tickets and well, crowded aircrafts and airports – not my steez. This goes for all other destinations too. Talk to any seasoned traveler and they’ll have their own tips and tricks and many theories 😀 about this, but generally there are some pretty solid guidelines on when it’s best to purchase your tickets. Let’s get into it.
BOOKING IN ADVANCE
There is actually such a thing as booking too much in advance. Don’t book 6 months prior to your date of departure. Last minute i.e. two weeks prior is also a problem. The best time is about a month and a half prior to your departure date. This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t keep checking prior to this, do so, and get an idea of what the ticket range is. Sometimes you may catch a promotion. Remember to get your visa application complete well in advance to ticket purchasing as they can be a hassle at times and you may not know exactly how long it will take for the process to be completed. Have a look HERE for a guide on the types of visas for South African travelers.
THE DAY & TIME to PURCHASE
Yes, it’s a thing, and it’s Tuesday morning. This ‘theory’ has worked for me hands down. As to the theory and factors on why this is the case, not my worry. My worry is cheap tickets and I’m sure that’s yours too yeah?! This has worked for me for both local and international flights, I’m also now learning that Wednesday morning (1:00AM) is also great for international flight purchase for South Africans so definitely have a look at this time as well.
SEASON TO TRAVEL
May seem like common sense but unless you know and prepare, this one could mess you up. You’ve got to avoid peak seasons to get a nice looking number on that ticket price. The best months to fly and book your trip are outside of the December holiday season and the mid-year North American summer time. The best months to book your trip are generally after January, around April/May, and August to November. This goes for both local and international travel.
DON’T DO IT ON…
Booking on Fridays and Sundays is completely horrible, as well as public holidays for local flights. Avoiding Sundays applies to international travel as well. Tickets will always be high if you book around festivals or major events. Have a look at this Travelstart infographic breaking down the best times to travel in SA.
LOCATION, LOCATION, LOCATION
Last but certainly not least, there are locations that are popular and optimal for travel from South Africa – international destinations that is. These destinations tend to be priced well in general. A few of them are Thailand, Seychelles, New York, Egypt and Turkey. Do a bit of research and see which destinations are cheaper from SA and rather pick from that list if you’re watching your budget 🙂 South Africa to Thailand is a route I actually took solo and loved. Read all about my experience here and make sure to have a look HERE on the best time to visit Thailand!
I hope this all helps. I’m sure it will. Got hacks and tips that I didn’t mention? Please leave them in the comments! Happy Traveling homies!