Sometimes, you’re minding your own business, strolling through Target because you needed to pick up some Tide pods, and all of a sudden something stops you dead in your tracks. Right there between home goods and garden tools there’s a giant display of electric food dehydrators, marked down 75 percent. Not that it had ever occurred to you to buy an electric food dehydrator. You’re not even sure exactly what an electric food dehydrator does. Something with jerky, probably. But it’s 75 percent off — you really can’t afford not to buy it. And the next thing you know you just dropped $241 when all you went to get was laundry soap.
August flight prices are going to be a little like that, minus the excessive amounts of dried meats. Some cities around the globe — and some far-flung domestic destinations — are gonna have flights so deeply discounted, you’ll kick yourself for not buying them. How do we know? Because our friends at Skyscanner said so, after they examined literally millions of historical flight prices to find the spots where airfares will drop most next month. And boy did they find some bargains.
Inside the US, usually cost-prohibitive Honolulu has flights close to a hundred dollars cheaper than usual, down 14 percent to $553. You can catch the tail end of tourist season in Alaska, with flights to Anchorage down 13 percent to $448. If you’ve been scanning your friends’ bachelor and bachelorette party posts and thinking, “Gee, I oughta get out there some day,” August is your month too; Nashville has flights down 24 percent to $250, and Austin drops 25 percent 50 $221. The rest of the domestic deals:
1. Raleigh-Durham, North Carolina — $219 (27%)
2. Charlotte, North Carolina — $239 (25%)
3. Austin, Texas — $221 (25%)
4. Nashville, Tennessee — $250 (23%)
5. Honolulu, Hawaii — $553 (14%)
6. Anchorage, Alaska — $448 (13%)
7. Minneapolis-St. Paul, Minnesota — $243 (12%)
8. Philadelphia, Pennsylvania — $246 (10%)
9. Tampa, Florida — $230 (10%)
10. Phoenix, Arizona — $281 (10%)
But the big, crazy, I-never-thought-I’d-go-there-but-at-this-price-I-kinda-have-to discounts are going to be found flying outside the country. Sydney has flights cheaper than you’ll find to some US regional airports, down a staggering 35 percent to $753. Spain also boasts some unusually cheap flights for summer, with Madrid flights 24 percent less than usual at $541 and Barcelona down 19 percent to $540. Even the sticker-shock capital of Europe in Zurich is cheaper this month, with airfares down nine percent to $753. Though you’ll probably use up all the money you saved on your first cup of coffee. The rest of the international leaderboard:
1. Sydney, Australia — $753 (35%)
2. Madrid, Spain — $541 (24%)
3. London, UK — $558 (12%)
4. Barcelona, Spain — $540 (19%)
5. Manchester, UK — $690 (13%)
6. Punta Cana, Dominican Republic — $515 (13%)
7. Guadalajara, Mexico — $330 (11%)
8. São Paulo, Brazil — $871 (10%)
9. Medellin, Colombia — $503 (10%)
10. Zurich, Switzerland — $753 (9%)
Much like the usefulness of an electric food dehydrator, none of this is guaranteed. Though Skyscanner has been doing this for a long time, so your odds of saving money on airfare next month are a lot better than the odds of you using that dehydrator much past Labor Day. If you wanna take advantage, login to Skyscanner, let them search the prices for you, and book through whichever airline they find with the lowest price. Or kill time while you’re waiting for your food to dry going from site to site yourself — your call.
Saving by spending really can work. Maybe not always in the case of Target impulse buys but definitely in the case of astoundingly cheap airfares. So you can spend this fall expounding the virtues of dried apricot slices. Or talking about all the great tapas you had in Spain. How you choose to save is up to you.