Super Bowl LI: When To Fly & Buy - Hopper Research

Super Bowl LI: When To Fly & Buy

Patrick
By Patrick Surry
Posted Jan 19, 2017

Summary

  • Patriots fans seemed the most confident about a Super Bowl appearance because their flight searches to the Super Bowl peaked before the playoffs had even begun. It was in the days following the Patriots' January 1st win, where they secured home field advantage throughout the playoffs, that fans' flight searches peaked.
  • Current good deal flight prices to Super Bowl LI are about $253 round-trip from US origins. Flights are cheapest for Falcons fans and most expensive for Steelers fans.
  • Prices to Houston (IAH, HOU) are trending an average of 6.4% above last year's prices from a typical US origin.
  • Typically, the cheapest flights to Houston are available 25 - 50 days in advance. Set up an alert on Hopper to get alerted when there's a great deal.
  • Currently, the cheapest time to travel for the Super Bowl is to depart the Tuesday before and return the following Wednesday.

Search Popularity


Figure 1: Relative Weekly Super Bowl Searches by Fan Base


  • Patriots fans' flight searches to the Super Bowl peaked in the days following their week 17, January 1st win, where they secured home field advantage throughout the playoffs. Unlike the other three teams, Patriots search volume actually declined following January 1st, suggesting they were the most confident fans regarding a Super Bowl appearance before the playoffs had even begun.
  • Falcons fans' flight searches also spiked in the days following their week 17, January 1st win, when the team clinched a first round bye. Interestingly, the most searches from Falcons fans' came following the wild card round, January 8th, when they found out the Seahawks would be their divisional round matchup.
  • Lopsided wins by the Packers and Steelers during the wild card round, January 8th, prompted the highest number of searches from these fan bases.
  • Packers, Falcons, and Steelers fans searching for Super Bowl flights all spiked this past weekend, January 15th, during the divisional round. For the Packers and Falcons fans, the searches occurred after their victories. Steeler fan search interest actually spiked before they beat the Chiefs, 18-16.

Current Prices

Prices to Houston (IAH, HOU) are trending an average of 6.4% above last year's prices from a typical US origin. Current good deal flight prices are about $253 round-trip from US origins. If you haven't bought your tickets yet, we recommend you buy now as we predict flight prices will only increase.

Current good deal prices to Houston for Super Bowl dates are:

When to Buy

Last year, the cheapest tickets to Houston were sold 25-50 days prior to departure. The Hopper app can monitor for flight deals and alert you exactly when to buy.

Figure 2: When to Buy Flights to Houston Based on 2017 and 2016 Data

When To Fly

The price peaks the Friday before and the Monday after the Super Bowl. Typically, the weekend is a more expensive time to travel, but because of the Super Bowl, traveling on Sunday is cheaper than normal. Currently, the cheapest time to travel for the Super Bowl is to depart the Tuesday before and return the following Wednesday.

Figure 3: When to Travel to Super Bowl LI


Data and Methodology

The data presented in this analysis comes from Hopper's combined feed of Global Distribution Service (GDS) data sources which includes over 100 million queries and 10 billion flight prices per day. Search demand is represented as the number of search queries not actual ticket purchases, and is calibrated across all GDS sources for each market. The fare prices presented are the 10th percentile prices and represent what a leisure traveler should expect to pay. For example, if the 10th percentile price is $800 dollars it means that only 10% of trips are priced at or below this price and therefore it's a good deal.