Last updated: 11:30 AM ET, Thu December 10 2015

What Do Expedia and ARC Predict Will Happen to Airfare in 2016?

Airlines & Airports | Airlines Reporting Corporation (ARC) | Rich Thomaselli | December 10, 2015

What Do Expedia and ARC Predict Will Happen to Airfare in 2016?

Expedia, Inc., in partnership with Airlines Reporting Corporation (ARC), today released its analysis of 2015 air travel trends and predictions for 2016 – and the news was good.

The third annual report, entitled “Preparing for Take-Off: Air Travel Outlook for 2016,” is based on Expedia’s own comprehensive data, ARC’s more than 10 billion ticket records, as well as other credible industry sources. The report was released at the 2015 Expedia Partner Conference currently taking place in Las Vegas, Nevada.

This is the third study from Expedia and ARC and focuses on North America and Europe, as data indicated those regions are showing great value for travelers heading into 2016. The report covers in detail topics such as ticket pricing on global and intra-North American and European market levels, the benefits of buying air tickets early and an analysis of the best day to purchase an air ticket.

Overall, the analysis by Expedia using data from ARC predicts that airfares are expected to continue to trend downward in 2016 as carriers continue to add capacity.

“It’s our pleasure to once again collaborate with Expedia on this important industry study,” Chuck Thackston, ARC’s managing director of enterprise information, said in a statement. “Expedia, armed with ARC’s global ticketing data, provides unmatched knowledge about the state of air travel offering valuable insights for leisure and corporate travelers to use when booking flights. We look forward to continue to partner with Expedia in the future.”

The report found that:

• Between October 2014 and October 2015, global air ticket prices declined on average about 8 percent versus the prior year. According to ARC data, the price of travel within Europe declined the most in that timeframe, making these routes among the best potential bargains for 2016.

• On the whole, the best time to purchase economy tickets in North America for travel within North America is approximately two months in advance.

• It is difficult to predict the best day of the week to find the lowest ticket prices because airlines constantly are adjusting prices. In general, the weekend has become a likely time to achieve savings though the rule of thumb still stands: if there is a good airfare available within the traveler's budget, buy it.

Greg Schulze, senior vice president of Global Tour & Transport for Expedia, Inc. added, “We sit in a unique spot – among Expedia, Inc. sites alone we had over 7.5 billion air searches over the past year. Analyzing these massive data sets with our partners at ARC gives us smart insights that we can pass along to travelers. And travelers benefit, because even small, simple insights in the booking process – what time of year or day of week to book, for example – can yield significant savings.”

Preparing for Take-Off: Air Travel Outlook for 2016 is available free at


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