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Airlines say happy holidays with higher airfares this year

@SamShankman

Dec 11, 2012 12:05 am

Skift Take

The same rules go for every holiday flying period: book early and book the off-peak days for any kinds of savings.

— Samantha Shankman

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Holiday lights at Francisco Sá Carneiro Airport is Porto, Portugal. Gil Abrantes / Flickr.com


The average round-trip domestic airfare is $414 this holiday season, reports Travelocity. This is an increase of about $24 from last year’s tickets and $28 more expensive than the average airfare during Thanksgiving.

Priceline reports a slightly higher airfare average of $444 for holiday tickets.

Every holiday period, online booking sites come out with the average round-trip airfare and how it compares to the previous year. This data isn’t helpful to most consumers whom rarely note the year-over-year difference, but does show pricing trends within the industry.

Travelocity notes that several popular routes fall below the national average, but many of those are short-haul flights between Boston to Washington, D.C., New York to Chicago, and Los Angeles to San Francisco.

As usual, flyers can save on airfare during the holidays by traveling on off-peak dates. Travelers that depart on December 23, 24, and 25, and return home later in the week can save up to $379, according to Travelocity. Priceline found the lowest fares for air travel to be for December 17, 18, 25, 27, and 31.

The good news is that although tickets might be more expensive, Skift has compiled data that suggests there will be fewer flight delays this year than the seven before it due to  Flights are more susceptible to delays in the Northeast due to unpredictable winter weather.

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