8 ways to score a cheap summer vacation deal

Written by |

Good news for summer leisure travelers: You can score a deal on airfare if you know when you should and shouldn’t fly this season, according to CheapAir.com.

Read more: 15 tips and apps to make your travels cheaper and easier

Here’s how to get the cheapest summer airfare

Skip the Sunday flights

The cheapest days to travel this summer will be Tuesdays and Wednesdays, according to CheapAir.com. If you stick to those days, especially Wednesday, you’ll save an average of $60 versus flying on a Sunday.

The cheapest individual dates to fly are…

CheapAir.com has crunched the numbers and found the cheapest days to fly this summer will be:

  • July 4
  • July 11-12
  • July 19-20
  • July 25-26
  • August 15-16
  • August 22-23
  • August 26
  • August 30
  • September 6
  • September 12-13
  • September 17
  • September 19-20
  • September 26-27

Stick to the Big 3 of cheap days

If you want to land the absolutely cheapest flights, aim to fly at least once on this trio of days:

  • July 4
  • August 22
  • September 12

These will be the three cheapest days to fly, bar none, all summer long.

Follow Clark’s #1 rule of cheap travel

Money expert Clark Howard has said it for years, but it bears repeating: Buy the deal first and then figure out why you want to go there!

With that in mind, Kayak Explore lets you find great airfare deals on a budget. You simply select how much you’re willing to pay, and then available destinations in your price range pop up on a world map. You can drill down further by season and month of travel.

Keep your eye out for pop-up airfare sales

Be sure to sign up for e-mails from your favorite carriers so you’re in the know about surprise airfare sales.

Tap into the power of social media

Try following airlines on social media because that’s where people are getting some of the lowest fares today. The airlines want to put out unpublished fares that will not be matched by others. Social media lets them attract a customer and not have to compete with each other. It’s a win/win for everybody!


Beware of travel clubs promising free travel

Vacation clubs promising free travel are again being pushed by postcard, e-mail and telephone. The basic m.o. is you’re told you’ve won a vacation, but you have to call in to claim your “prize.”

Don’t get too excited; it turns out you’ll be required to make an appointment to hear what amounts to a sales pitch for a timeshare. They’ll typically try to get $5,000 or $6,000 from you, stringing you along all the while with the promise of free travel, cruises and more. Don’t fall for it!

Avoid baggage fees by not checking a bag

Only one discount airline — Southwest — still allows you to check up to two bags without paying a fee even when you buy the cheapest available fare. Of course, not everyone lives in a market served by Southwest.

So there’s still one other way to avoid baggage fees no matter which carrier you’re flying: Don’t check a bag.

Consider traveling only with what an airline permits free as a single carry-on piece of luggage. You’ll never have to worry about the airline losing your baggage!

Read more: Best sunscreens for your money

Clark shares his travel predictions for the rest of 2017


best travel rewards credit card Best Travel Credit Cards: Top Rewards Picks for 2024 - The best travel rewards credit cards! Compare the latest sign-up bonus offers to start earning free flights, hotel stays and more.