We are hoping to fly nonstop next summer from Wash. DC to London (6/22) and then home from Paris (7/7). Based on historic prices, I had anticipated paying about $1,000 r/t per traveler. My multi-city flight search via Orbitz and Expedia, however, have turned up fares of $1,500 each. (From what I can tell, Continental/United are the only airlines that fly both of those routes nonstop. I am using "WAS," "LON," and "PAR" airport codes to maximize my options.) It's not an Olympics issue, because r/t fares just to Paris are even higher, $1,700 r/t. And it doesn't seem to be a USD valuation issue, because the same WAS-LON-PAR-WAS flight next month is less than $1,000 each.
It's been nearly 20 years since I booked flights to Europe, so I might be unfamiliar with how best to do this. Do such fares typically start high and then come down in price? If so, when do you expect is the best time to get lower fares? For domestic flights, I typically get the best prices by booking as soon as flights become available -- does it work differently with flights to Europe? Many thanks!