TORONTO – Canadians should look to fly on a Tuesday if they’re travelling domestically or on a Thursday if they’re leaving the country, suggests data from the travel website Kayak, which is looking back on its first year in Canada.
The search engine for flight, hotel and car rental deals crunched the numbers behind how Canadians searched for travel since it launched here last May and found there were fairly consistent trends in pricing.
On average, domestic flights in Canada were cheapest if departing on a Tuesday and returning on a Friday. Flights leaving on a Thursday and returning on a Sunday tended to be most expensive.
International flights taking off from Canada were typically best priced on Thursdays with a return flight on a Monday. Departing on a Monday and returning on a Friday resulted in the most expensive tickets.
“These trends we’re seeing in Canada are not that different from the trends we’re seeing in other countries,” said Debby Soo, a vice president with Kayak, which handles 100 million searches a month.
“Often times you hear that flights departing on Tuesdays are the cheapest and I’ve seen that trend in the U.S. and in some markets in Europe.”
For Canadians looking to squeeze in a trip before the summer is through, Soo said flights to New York, Washington, D.C. and Chicago are all cheaper on average than they were last year, as are flights to Montreal and Halifax.
Flights to Asian destinations including Beijing, Tokyo, Hong Kong, Shanghai and Seoul are up 20 to 27 per cent on average compared to last year, she added.
For those looking for hotel deals this summer, average prices are cheapest for the U.S. in Orlando and Fort Lauderdale, in Edmonton and Ottawa in Canada, and in Prague and Istanbul overseas.
Since Kayak launched in Canada last year, users have most commonly searched for flights to London, followed by Paris, Fort Lauderdale, Las Vegas and New York. Top searches for domestic flights were for trips to Vancouver, followed by Toronto, Calgary, Montreal and Edmonton.
Other tips for booking flights based on Kayak’s data:
— Flying on Saturdays or Sundays can be 15 per cent more expensive
— January is, on average, the cheapest month to fly with fares that can be almost 20 per cent less expensive
— If travelling in the summer, June and July usually have better deals available than in August
— For European travel, look to book a flight between eight to 10 weeks in advance for best pricing. For travel to Asia, booking nine to 10 months out offers the best chance of a good deal