This Is The Cheapest Time To Fly To Italy For Your Dream Vacation

So, you want to go to Italy, the exquisite and romantic country known for the creation of the Renaissance, pizza, and Chianti. Visions of eating creamy cacio e pepe pasta while slowly sipping chilled Frascati Superiore wine amidst a bustling piazza in the heart of Rome swirl eagerly through your mind — your anticipation is growing day by day.

While Italy is indeed a stunning, scenic country with mouth-watering delicacies available all year round, when planning your dream vacation to this Italian wonder of language, architecture, history, amazing food, and stunning landscapes, you might be hoping to squeeze your getaway in during the summer months to maximize Italy's warm Mediterranean climate. However, booking flights around this time will cost you a pretty penny. In fact, data from Skyscanner reveals that June is the priciest time to fly to Italy from the U.S., followed by August and July.

On top of that, the summer season in Italy is hotter than Hades throughout the boot, not to mention it's filled with a tremendous amount of tourists, resulting in vast crowds and long waiting lines throughout all the spectacular, famous sites. To save money on airfare and get the most bang for your buck, you may want to rethink a summer trip and visit during one of Italy's off-peak seasons.

Book a late winter getaway for the best flight deals

So, when is the cheapest time to fly to Italy for that vacation you've always dreamed of? With numerous travel sites providing varying suggestions on when airfare costs are at their lowest, it can be a bit confusing. Sites such as Kayak advise that flights to Italy from the U.S. are the cheapest in February, while Skyscanner found its cheapest fares in March (though the site also named February as the cheapest historically). However, one thing's certain: Late winter trips to Italy can be a steal compared to the going rates for a summer vacation.

Scott Keyes, founder and chief flight expert of, agrees, telling Travel + Leisure, "The two months with by far the highest number of cheap flights to Italy are January and February." As Keyes explained, the first two months of the year are an unpopular time for Americans to visit Europe, so to try to sell more seats, airlines are known to drop their prices during this time.

However, note that January through March can be a very cold period in Italy, especially in the snowy northern regions. If you don't mind the white stuff, flying during this time will afford you cheaper airfare and, quite possibly, a beautiful, snow-filled vacation.

For warmer weather, stick to the shoulder seasons

If you can't bear the frigid temps during your Italian vacation, you're still in luck. Early spring and early fall are two other inexpensive times to fly, according to booking site data. March and April offer fares well below those found in the summer months, though note that by May, prices are typically starting to rise. The crowds also tend to pick up by this time, making it less than ideal if you're hoping for a quiet and peaceful escape.

Fall, from September to November, is another shoulder season worth considering. After the summer rush, flight costs start to taper, with October offering some of the lowest of the season. The weather during this time also begins to cool off, making long days of walking and sightseeing more bearable. However, keep in mind that the fall can still be a popular time for tourism in Italy, and as a result, you likely won't find the best airfare deals of the year.

Prices fluctuate during the holidays

Flying to Italy from the U.S. from December through the first week of January increases the price of flight tickets quite a bit, especially just before and during Christmas and New Year. After all, is anything more romantic than a festive Italian Christmas or ringing in a new year in the middle of Venice? Still, if you're trying to stick to a travel budget, the holiday season might not be the best time to fly.

One notable exception is Thanksgiving, a holiday celebrated in the U.S. but not in Italy. While domestic flight fares can soar during this time, international tickets tend to dip, as Scott Keyes told Travel + Leisure. "I'd argue that the hidden best week of the entire year for cheap flights to Italy is Thanksgiving," Keyes explained, adding that some of Italy's charming Christmas markets are already open by this time. However, keep in mind that if your journey to Italy requires a domestic connecting flight before crossing the Atlantic, your fare might not be as competitive as you'd hoped. Research tickets from your city in advance to compare rates and snag the best prices.

How to save more money on flights to Italy

Regardless of when you plan your trip to Italy, booking at least a couple of months in advance is more likely to yield affordable seats than waiting until the last minute. However, booking too early may cause unexpected problems should your airline decide to cancel your flight. That being said, it's important to give yourself plenty of time to shop around for the cheapest tickets and research alternatives in case your plans go awry.

When you're ready to hit the "book now" button, consider choosing your days strategically. First, a report by Expedia revealed that Sunday is the cheapest day of the week to make your booking, while Friday tends to result in the most expensive fares. Travelers who book on Sundays can save up to 13% on international flights, according to the study. For your actual departure day, Expedia shared that Thursday is the cheapest day to fly internationally (Sunday is the most expensive), and trips that take off before 3 p.m. have the best chance of not being canceled.

If you don't mind pairing your Italian getaway with a quick trip to another country, you might want to book your flight to a different European hub that's within easy access to the boot-shaped nation. You may find a cheaper seat heading to England or Ireland, for instance. From there, look for a low-cost flight to your dream destination in Italy.