(NewsNation) — The travel summer surge is in full effect, with more than 6.5 million people being screened by the TSA this weekend despite sky-high flight prices and inflation.
Airfares averaged more than $400 for a round-trip ticket, up 45% from last year according to travel firm Hopper. People also decided to hit the road this year, with AAA estimating more than 39 million people traveled at least 50 miles from home. But drivers didn’t catch much of a break on car travel costs either. The national average for a gallon of gas reached a new record this weekend hitting $4.62 a gallon. Just last year, gas prices were $3.05.
“It’s been very frustrating to have to go find another hotel for a night, buy new plane tickets,” a traveler told NewsNation. “We spent $200 on an Uber all the way here. We’ve been spending a lot of money.”
If you plan to travel this summer, travel experts say these are the circumstances one should expect. Delta just announced it is cutting 100 flights daily through August. JetBlue is also reducing its flight schedule by i to 10 percent, and Alaska Airlines will cut two percent of its flights due to a pilot shortage.
Travel expert Kendra Thornton and economist Ernst Coupet Jr. weighed in on the best ways to save despite the travel surge and inflation and what to be aware of on “Morning in America.” You can watch the full Economic Brain Room in the player above.
Book your travel on Tuesday
Travel expert Kendra Thornton recommends booking your flight during the week as prices tend to go up on the weekend when more people have time to book. Thornton recommends Tuesday, but any day midweek will traditionally be cheaper than the weekend.
Flight out on Wednesday
Thornton said the best day to fly is Wednesday, yet another testament to the economic benefits of midweek travel.
Book last minute
The app “Hotel Tonight” is a great option for those looking for a quick stay. It allows guests to book a hotel stay the day of.
When the price of one mode of transportation increases, all increase
Coupet warned to be wary of when one mode of transportation prices increases — that means the others are soon on their way.
“When prices of gas rise, it’s going to have an impact on all the other types of transportation. So because there are substitutes, flying is going to be more expensive. Driving obviously is going to be more expensive.” Coupet said. “I expect airline fees to be high as well because they’re all competing industries.”
Interviews have been edited for length and clarity.