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Thanksgiving Travel

Scottsdale, Arizona
10 posts
Thanksgiving Travel

I've booked a cruise for the week after Thanksgiving. The cruise goes from Nov 24-Dec 1 out of Miami. I'm planning on flying in on Thanksgiving day (Nov 22) or the day after depending on prices. Right now, flights out of Phoenix are around $450 roundtrip. With the days I'll be traveling, should I book my flight now or wait a little while till prices drop? Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!

Bangkok
Destination Expert
for Bangkok, Air Travel, Thailand
Level Contributor
15,542 posts
71 reviews
1. Re: Thanksgiving Travel

Hi,

Thanksgiving travel tends to be very reliable and constant in that the days are fixed.. It's always Thursday.. So the peak days are the Tuesday and Wednesday in front of it and to a lesser degree the preceeding Monday (3 days in advance)..

On the back end, Sunday is of course the killer day.. Everyone wants/needs to come home.. So if you can manage a Friday or Saturday return, you'll have more/better options.

Will prices fall? Doubt it.. Thanksgiving is one of the biggest air travel periods and it's reliable and predictable due to the days being fixed..

While fuel; the #1 variable cost-- has thankfully-- gone down as of recent, it

s still higher than where most carriers planned for it to be, and I don't think you're going to see any fare relief due to fuel prices in the near term....

If anything this fuel pull-back has only stopped the upward fare pressure.. or put the brakes on added or increased fuel surcharges.

Lastly, remember that most all carriers have cut back capacity, to include domestic.. and while Thanksgiving is a profitable time to be an airline, they've learned that generally speaking, adding capacity (or more flights and seats) tends to hurt you long term, not help you.

If you HAVE to fly over that period and your dates are fixed-- which it sounds if they are, I wouldn't mess with it.. as IF the prices move against you, you're dead in the water with no real options.. If however, you can afford that risk, then that's another issue..

Travel Safe,

White Plains, New...
Destination Expert
for White Plains, Aruba
Level Contributor
6,405 posts
186 reviews
2. Re: Thanksgiving Travel

Prices will not drop. Book now everyone knows their schedule

San Diego
Destination Expert
for San Diego
Level Contributor
61,246 posts
67 reviews
3. Re: Thanksgiving Travel

Flights are expensive this year.

I wouldn't necessarily expect prices to drop from that $450 level!

IF you can afford it and you need specific dates I'd book it.

I'd not wait past about August to book for the fall.

Hanoi, Vietnam
Level Contributor
13,644 posts
60 reviews
4. Re: Thanksgiving Travel

Check the alternate airport to compare prices - Ft Lauderdale, but don't wait long

(I believe Tuesday is the day to buy domestic travel)

Milwaukee
Destination Expert
for Milwaukee
Level Contributor
10,463 posts
62 reviews
5. Re: Thanksgiving Travel

Since you've already booked the cruise I'd say book flights now. Even if prices come down a little they aren't likely to come down that much and if flights begin to sell out the remaining seats could go way up in price. I think there is much more risk to the upside than the downside.

Definitely check flights into FLL. Have you checked prices for Southwest?

Edited: 25 June 2012, 00:55
Mesa, Arizona
Level Contributor
9,998 posts
7 reviews
6. Re: Thanksgiving Travel

I would book it NOW and not worry about a price reduction which likely wont happen. I'm glad to see you are coming in 2 days before.

remember that Thanksgiving day could be a zoo...or more.. (actually the day BEFORE Turkey day is the worst flying day of the year).

Right now I ONLY FIND ONE NON-STOP FLIGHT ON AA for $347. There are US Airways 1-stop changing in CLT.

Milwaukee
Destination Expert
for Milwaukee
Level Contributor
10,463 posts
62 reviews
7. Re: Thanksgiving Travel

Actually I don't think Thanksgiving Day is a big day for flying since most people fly to their destination on Wednesday or earlier. I still think it's smart to book now though.

Scottsdale, Arizona
10 posts
8. Re: Thanksgiving Travel

Yeah, I've been looking at Ft Lauderdale as well as Miami. Ft Lauderdale seems to be a little cheaper but not significantly. Palm Beach was actually about $100 cheaper, but with the distance and the extra amount I would spend on travel, I figure that's probably not worth it.

Either way, I thought with the fact that I was traveling on Thanksgiving day (not the day before or the Sunday after) and a week after that I might be able to get a cheaper price. I'll be sure to book soon. Thanks for the help everyone!

Milwaukee
Destination Expert
for Milwaukee
Level Contributor
10,463 posts
62 reviews
9. Re: Thanksgiving Travel

For kicks take a look at the prices flying the day before Thanksgiving. I bet it's higher than what your finding for your travel days. I agree Palm Beach would probably cost too much extra for ground transportation.

Hopefully hotel rates are cheap in Miami over Tahnksgiving, but I don't know for sure.

Have you checked out cruisecritic.com? There is lots of good info about cruises there, how to book shore excursions cheap and what to expect on your ship, lots of useful stuff.

Scottsdale, Arizona
10 posts
10. Re: Thanksgiving Travel

I checked the prices and they actually aren't too much worse the day before Thanksgiving.

As for cruisecritic.com, I am definitely aware of the site and I agree it's very useful. Great resource for everything cruise related. Thanks again!