Cyber Monday is more than just a digital equivalent of Black Friday when you can get great deals by shopping online — usually for holiday gifts. In fact, truly savvy travelers know that it’s when there’s an abundance of airline ticket bargains. And while most probably think the annual sales bonanza is a good time to book their flights for the upcoming holidays (which totally makes sense), it can be more than that. You can get the best deals for next year’s vacation on Cyber Monday. But you have to know how.

Here are some booking strategies that you can use on Cyber Monday for an amazingly affordable vacation in the coming year.

Book Flights for the First Half of Next Year

The price of flights generally jumps about three weeks prior to the departure. International trips should be booked even farther out than domestic flights. For domestic travel, booking within three months to up to 30 days from departure will yield the best prices. For international destinations, the general consensus is that the lowest ticket prices are booked from three to six months before take-off. And since Cyber Monday is on the last Monday in November, you’ll save the most money on flights in the first half of the new year. January to February for domestic destinations, and February to May for international trips.

Be Flexible on the Exact Dates You Fly

In addition to being flexible about where you go, you also should give yourself wiggle room when you go. Being flexible on the days you fly can yield the most savings. This is especially true if you are willing to travel during the middle of the week as opposed to a Friday or Sunday. It’s also something you’ll be able to see right when you’re looking at flights to and from a destination on Cyber Monday.

Book a Multi-City Itinerary

A multi-city itinerary, also known as “open-jaw flights,” is when you mix and match flights to different destinations. Instead of a normal roundtrip, you book to fly into one city or airport and fly back home from another. Travelers who do this will have to find a way to get to the second destination, which means it’s best for vacations like road tripping abroad or exploring a continent with a rail pass. You could also use it from getting back home — booking to fly in and out of one place and leaving and arriving at another. It can especially save you some money if there’s a public transit option or a family member/friend that’s willing to pick you up by car and gets you back for less than the difference to roundtrip airfare. It is easier than ever to find, compare, and book these types of flight itineraries without having to go through a professional travel agent.

Related: Use These Tips for Booking Holiday Flights on Cyber Monday!

Remember That Red-Eye Flights Are Cheaper

Although they may not always be the most convenient, there is no doubt that you can save a significant amount of money by choosing red-eye flights, which take off at the end of the day and fly overnight. This type of flight is also a good choice if you want to maximize your vacation time. With a little preparation, you can time it to get to the airport not long after leaving work, sleep on the flight, and then start your first day of vacation as soon as you land. And, if you can find a way to store your luggage, you can pack in a full last day at your destination after checking out of your hotel before heading to the airport and sleeping on the flight home.

Mix & Match Airlines

Do not feel obligated to stick with one airline for the entirety of your trip. Mixing and matching airlines is a simple booking strategy that can save you a substantial amount of money while also opening up more options. Like travel dates and destinations, you should play around with different combinations of airlines to try to find the best deals for next year’s vacation on Cyber Monday.

Avoid Direct Flights & Embrace the Layover

If you’ve ever compared flights to find the cheapest one to a destination, then you’ve probably noticed that direct flights are the most expensive. Thus, if you’re looking for the best deal on flights you should avoid direct flights. While it is a bit more work to have to change planes during a layover, the savings may be worth the inconvenience. As a bonus, you can potentially use these layovers to add a mini-vacation within your main trip. If, for example, you are flying to Los Angeles from New York City and have always wanted to visit Chicago, why not book a 24-hour layover in the Windy City on your way to California? You can spend the day exploring the area and cut down on the cost of your flight

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About The Author

Dave Odegard is an ex-army brat turned internet word person, whose work has been published on Maxim Online, USAToday, Buzzfeed, and more. He is currently the Senior Content Writer at Fareportal (CheapOair's parent company) and spends his free time exploring the wilds of Brooklyn, New Jersey, and Sweden.