Business travellers can save over 53 percent on the price of an airfare by booking three weeks or more prior to their departure date, according to new research designed to help travellers reduce the cost of flying.
Using a departure date of 5 July 2011, FCm’s study captured the cheapest available fares for flights between 6am and 8am. The study analysed the price of one-way fares throughout June and July 2011 for 12 key domestic routes.
The analysis compared average ticket prices across the 12 routes for bookings made one day in advance of the 5 July departure date, two to five days, six to 10 days, 11 to 20 days and 21 days in advance.
The survey found a domestic ticket bought 21 days in advance of the 5 July departure date cost an average of $105.
- A ticket bought 11 – 20 days in advance of the 5 July departure date cost on average 17% more at $123;
- A ticket bought 6 – 10 days in advance of the departure date cost on average 38% more at $145;
- A ticket bought 2 – 5 days in advance of the departure date cost on average 43% more at $150 and
- A ticket bought 0 – 1 day in advance cost an average of 116% more at $227.
According to FCm Regional General Manager Nick Queale, booking tickets as early as possible is an ideal way for business travellers to reduce the cost of air travel.
“This study is useful for both the leisure and business traveller as well as companies that require staff to travel regularly for work, as it demonstrates that generally tickets across carriers are cheaper the earlier you purchase them.”
“For companies looking to reduce their business travel costs we recommend implementing an ‘advance purchase’ policy into staff travel guidelines to ensure maximum savings across all employee travel.”
Queale said these studies were vitally important for companies which have large mobile workforces.
“It’s crucial a business has access to experienced account managers that have the reporting technology and the airfare experience to know how to capture and benchmark this kind of data. Companies can use this information to improve the way they buy travel to increase airfare savings over the long term.”