Now is the best time to book your holiday airfare

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It's time to start thinking about travel plans if you want to save money on fares. (Shutterstock)

If you're heading out of town to visit your family for the holidays, now is the time to check airline prices.

Orbitz pinpoints October 6 as the day to buy Thanksgiving airfare, October 9 to book Christmas tickets, and October 10 to plan New Year's Eve travel.

However, there are some other dates when airline travel might be cheaper. According to Priceline, for Thanksgiving, you're likely to find the best fares if you leave on Nov. 19, 20, 23, 24 and 26; and return home on Nov. 26 or 27, or wait until Dec. 1. For Christmas, cheaper departure dates are currently December 21-25, while the best return dates are December 28-31.

Plus, don't forget to think about the time of day when booking. The cheapest times to fly are early in the morning from 5 to 7am or after 8pm. The most expensive hours to fly are 8 to 10am and 5 to 7pm.
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