Here Are the Most Expensive Days to Fly in 2020

If you want to score cheap flights, make sure to avoid traveling during these days.

If you’re a frequent flyer, you know that planning and booking your trip in advance can save you a lot of money. Another way to save a lot of money (and stress) on tickets is to avoid flying on the most expensive and popular travel days. You’ll also want to read up on these travel secrets to get the best airfare possible.

KAYAK analyzed its data from 2019 for Reader’s Digest to help predict the most expensive days to fly within the United States in 2020. Unsurprisingly, they found that the most expensive days to fly are around the holidays. In 2019, the days leading up to or after Christmas, Thanksgiving, 4th of July, and Memorial Day weekend saw the highest median airfare. December 21, 2019—the Saturday before Christmas—had the highest median ticket price at $588. There was also a spike in ticket prices on July 7, 2019, the Sunday after the 4th of July. Median airfare was $570. If these prices are stressing you out, try using this browsing mode to get the cheapest airfare.

Based on the data they collected from 2019, the days you’re going to want to avoid flying on in 2020 are:

  • 12/19/20: Saturday before the holiday weekend
  • 12/16/20: Wednesday before the holiday weekend
  • 7/5/20: Sunday after July 4th
  • 11/29/20: Sunday after Thanksgiving
  • 12/18/20: Friday before the holidays
  • 12/17/20: Thursday before the holidays
  • 12/21/20: Monday before the holidays
  • 12/26/20: Saturday after the holidays
  • 12/22/20: Tuesday before the holidays
  • 5/25/20: Monday of Memorial Day weekend
  • 6/29/20: Monday before 4th of July

If you’re prepared and avoid these days, you’ll save yourself some money and the possibility of being kicked off an overbooked flight. If you already know that you’re going to be traveling during these holidays, know that you can save money by booking a flight on the actual holiday or the weekend after if you book far enough in advance. The travel experts at KAYAK say that the cheapest median airfare for domestic holiday airfare can be booked about three weeks out. So keep that in mind when solidifying your travel plans for 2020. For more help, here’s when to buy flights for every holiday of the year.

If you’re reading this article a little too late and haven’t booked your flights yet for holiday travel, this is about how much you’re going to pay, according to data from 2019.

12/21/19$588Saturday of holiday weekend
12/18/19$571Wednesday before holiday weekend
7/7/19$570Sunday after July 4th
12/1/19$570Sunday after Thanksgiving
12/20/19$570Friday before holidays
12/19/19$566Thursday before holidays
12/16/19$558Monday before holidays
12/26/19$557Thursday after holidays
12/17/19$553Tuesday before holidays
5/27/19$549Monday of MDW
7/1/19$549Monday before July 4th

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Morgan Cutolo
Morgan is the Assistant Digital Managing Editor at Reader’s Digest. She graduated from the University of New Hampshire in 2016 where she received her Bachelor of Arts in Journalism. When she’s not writing for rd.com or keeping the 650+ pieces of content our team produces every month organized, she likes watching HGTV, going on Target runs, and searching through Instagram to find new corgi accounts to follow.