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Summer flights in the US are 19% cheaper than last year — here's how to find the best deals

A plane seen from below.
Jet fuel is now around $90 per barrel, cheaper than it was last year, when it reached $178 per barrel in June.Photo by Nicolas Economou/NurPhoto via Getty Images
  • Booking a domestic flight 3 to 4 months in advance helps travelers find the best price.

  • Flying mid-week and early in the morning is cheaper and can help avoid travel disruptions.

  • Domestic airfare is down 19% compared to 2022, with an average price of $306 per ticket.

Prices for US domestic flights have finally cooled off after a very expensive 2022.

A round-trip domestic airfare ticket is now averaging $306, according to a new report by travel website Hopper. That's down 19% compared to last year when the average price peaked at $376 per ticket, the highest it's been since 2017.

After last year's soaring prices and travel disruptions, airlines have made an effort to increase capacity, coming close to pre-COVID levels.

Jet fuel is also cheaper than it was last year, when it reached $178 per barrel in June, according to Bloomberg data. It is now around $90 per barrel.

Domestic tickets could be less expensive as travelers are excited to go international now that restrictions related to the pandemic are almost fully gone.

On the flip side, fares to Europe and Asia are currently 36% and 62% more expensive than last year, respectively. Other than domestic flights, only flights to South America and the Antilles are cheaper than they were last year.

Finding the best deal for summer travel is all about timing.

According to Hopper, domestic travelers should start booking their flights 3 to 4 months in advance — 3 to 5 months for international trips — and pay attention to when the flight is scheduled to take off.

Domestic mid-week flights — Wednesday especially — are on average $56 cheaper year-round, $60 cheaper over the summer, and up to $100 cheaper during holidays.

To try and avoid travel disruptions, early morning flights are preferable. After 9 a.m., flights are twice as likely to be delayed, according to Hopper. The Federal Aviation Administration has already warned travelers that it anticipates a 45% increase in flight delays at East Coast airports over the summer

Read the original article on Business Insider