Book now or you won't be grateful for Thanksgiving airfares

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Every day you procrastinate booking your Thanksgiving air travel is costing you. And WCCO talked to an airline expert who can tell you how much: a five spot per day.

The station urged budget-conscious travelers to solidify travel plans quickly. Terry Tripler, founder of the travel website ThePlaneRules.com, told WCCO that this holiday, fewer seats are available.

"The airlines this year have cut back on capacity. They’ve pretty well got this supply and demand thing figured out," Tripler explained. "So that’s why we’re seeing airfares up.”

Travel websites predict the average cost for a round-trip ticket this year will be $415, an upgrade of nearly 7 percent over last year's Thanksgiving rush.

The Travel Channel says the day before Thanksgiving is traditionally the busiest travel day of the year, so you can count on a mob scene at the airport, lots of crying babies on laps and no empty middle seats. The holiday also has an uncanny ability to attract the first good sock-'em-in wintry weather of the year to further snag the flight schedule.

Meanwhile, a blog called ThePointsGuy, which guides travelers to the best deals for using those accumulated miles, says the busiest – and most expensive – travel days are Wednesday, the day before turkey day (November 27) and the Sunday after (December 1).

The blog suggests the long weekend might be a good time for global travel. The website reminds flyers that Thanksgiving is strictly an American holiday, so it's just another Thursday in London or Rekjavik. While that may mean lower fares and fewer crowds, it also means you might not be able to find any pumpkin pie after you get your passport stamped.

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