Now or then?
December 16, 2008 9:53 PM   Subscribe

International travel question. I'm planning a trip to France next March. Is there any consensus on what fares are going to do in the next three months? Should I book now or should I trust that fares will start to reflect the fact that fuel costs are down and wait until later? I know this question has been asked previously but that wasn't when the price of oil had dropped by 60%+
posted by Neiltupper to Travel & Transportation around France (3 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Just from personal reference: I booked a trip from Chicago (O'Hare) to Paris (De Gaulle) in late October for a visit in March. I bought my ticket for US$706, including trip insurance, non-stop each way. I booked my tickets through Student Universe, if it makes any difference -- they were by far the cheapest tickets we found.

While it looks like you can still find tickets for only a few dollars more, they aren't non-stop, which is worth a lot to me. Despite the hype about "tickets being the cheapest now!" I don't see any evidence of that on international flights more than a few weeks ahead of time.

And further personal anecdote, my father (who I humbly state is a pretty frequent international flier) strongly urged me to buy my tickets as soon as possible. While I would certainly get a professional opinion, in my opinion I would say buy now -- as the tickets for the week I'm going have gone up, I'm pretty sure any tickets from US/Canada will only get more expensive.
posted by elisabethjw at 11:31 PM on December 16, 2008

Try Farecast. They are meant to offer predicitions of when the best time to purchase tickets are. They've recently been bough my MS though, so am not sure how (if at all) that has changed things. They certainly used to be worth a look though...
posted by Mave_80 at 3:30 AM on December 17, 2008

I'll second farecast. They're just what you're looking for. Keep in mind that prices can shoot up drastically in the spring. I don't know what day/week they switch to summer season where prices double, but keep an eye out. If your travel dates are flexible, be sure to play with the dates/times of your flights to get a good deal.
posted by JuiceBoxHero at 2:33 PM on December 17, 2008

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