There are dozens of international airlines that fly in and out of the U.S. But when it comes to getting the best deals on an international flight, you may be better off shopping closer to home.
A new report released Thursday by deal spotter Scott’s Cheap Flights found the best deals on international flights this year were predominantly on Delta Air Lines, United Airlines, and American Airlines.
“The primary driver of cheap flights is competition between airlines on a given route,” Scott Keyes, the co-owner of Scott’s Cheap Flights, told Travel + Leisure. “Delta, United, and American operate the most flights out of the US, and thus have the greatest likelihood of fares dropping on flights overseas.”
The report was based off deals the group sent to its members over the last 12 months, analyzing more than 150 airports in 49 states, Washington D.C. and Puerto Rico. It included nearly 90 different airlines, seven U.S.-based and the rest international, but did not include certain carriers like Spirit and Frontier.
Air Canada came in fourth place for cheap flights from the U.S., according to the report. Combined with with United, Delta, and American, the four carriers made up 56.1 percent of all deals Scott’s Cheap Flights sent out this year.
The rest of the deals distributed were a combination of American airlines like JetBlue and Alaska Airlines, as well as international airlines like KLM, Air France, British Airways and Singapore Airlines.
The report also found that — contrary to popular belief — booking a flight out of an airline's hub does not necessarily guarantee the lowest price, in fact, the opposite is more often the case. Travelers who are based near a hub (like Atlanta for Delta, for example), should look at the competitor’s flights for the best price — out of Atlanta, it turns out, American more often had the better deals.
Travelers out of California appeared to be the luckiest with the Golden State seeing 4,844 good deals, the most of any other state in the country. The best airline to fly out of California appeared to be United.
Florida travelers has the second most good deals in the country with 4,019. And New York, which is often thought of as a gateway to Europe, came in third with only 2,941 good flight deals, mostly on United.