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Here’s how far in advance you should book your flight

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Booking your flight at the right time can save you money, but it’s hard to know when exactly that right time is.

CheapAir.com recently released its annual study on when you should book your flight to get the best deals, analyzing around 1.2 million trips from the US to 74 popular destinations around the world.

Here’s what they found out about booking international flights.

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Samantha Lee/Business Insider

The data shows that certain international destinations can be cheaper to fly to if you plan far in advance, though this isn’t necessarily true across the board.

There are also other variables you should keep in mind. These include the number of people in your party, whether you’re traveling during the high tourist season, and any extenuating circumstances — like major events or political tensions — that might affect the demand and price.  

Earlier this year, CheapAir also analyzed around 1.3 billion flights in the US to determine the best time to book a domestic trip, which they found was 54 days in advance.

For domestic flights, CheapAir broke down the booking process into five different stages.

bi graphics_How far in advance to book your flight_timeline

Samantha Lee/Business Insider

For domestic flights, the typical pattern is that flights first open for sale with fares on the higher side. 

The period when you’re most likely to score savings is during the “Prime Booking Window” of between 21 and 112 days before your trip. According to CheapAir, the timing of this period has been pretty consistent every year.  

It’s also important to keep in mind that airfare predictions can often contradict themselves, and fares are tricky to predict. You can also sign up for price alerts on sites like Airfarewatchdog.com

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