Whether you completely procrastinated on planning your summer travel or want to squeeze in one more getaway before the leaves start to change, data is here to help you fit that much-needed vacation into your budget.
Travel metasearch engine Kayak analyzed summer travel dates and pricing trends to let you in on industry secrets, so you can spend more time enjoying the beach and less trying to replenish your bank account.
A site-wide analysis showed that Friday is typically the cheapest day to depart for summer getaways, with the first and second weeks of June being the cheapest travel times throughout summer. June is also the least expensive month of summer to book hotels, and Sundays are the cheapest days in summer to check in to them, so plan accordingly.
Can't get away so soon? Kayak shared some of the best and worst days to travel throughout the season — so you can calendar in your cheapest travel options.
Worst departure date for domestic travel: Sunday, June 25
Kayak determined that this is the most expensive departure date for domestic travel, probably thanks to everyone banking on a long Independence Day break. Overall, Sunday is the most expensive departure day for domestic travel throughout the summer, so book your long weekends accordingly.
Kayak found that domestic fares are pretty consistent in price throughout the summer, with data showing that the best deals on domestic flights are typically found two to four weeks before your travel date.
Worst departure date for international travel: Friday, June 30
Kayak determined this is the most expensive date for international departures throughout the summer, so try to book before or wait until July. This is also the most expensive day for airfare overall, with median airfare already increasing over $400, thanks to the Fourth of July holiday.
Luckily, you don't need many weekdays off to book a budget-friendly international getaway. Kayak found that weekdays are actually the most expensive days for international departures, so save your long trips for weekends.
And don't postpone those dreams of wandering through Athens or Tokyo this summer. According to Kayak data, international flights are cheaper the more in advance you book, so start planning that late-summer European getaway as soon as possible for the best savings.
Best day fly for July 4th weekend: Sunday, July 2
Kayak advises that the best way to save money on any holiday is to fly on the day of the holiday. But if you'd rather spend the day watching fireworks than fiddling with your 3.5-ounce liquids in the TSA line, Kayak recommends departing on Sunday, July 2, and returning on Wednesday, July 5, to save money. Median airfare for these dates is currently $200.
Cheapest weekend day for July travel: Friday, July 7
If you're traveling in July, Kayak found that the cheapest weekend to fly is the weekend of July 7, just after Independence Day.
As a whole, however, July is the most expensive summer month for travel: Kayak's median flight prices hover around $315 for this month. Consider July your road trip month and perhaps take to the skies in August.
Cheapest weekend day for August travel: Friday, August 25
If you're traveling in August, Kayak found that the cheapest weekend to fly is the weekend of August 25, just before Labor Day. Kayak also advises booking Labor Day travel as soon as you see a good deal, because waiting will most likely result in higher prices for procrastinators.