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Minneapolis (MSP)

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Flights to Minneapolis (MSP) overview

Going searches for the best fares and sends members deals bookable 1-12 months in advance. Going members save approximately 34% compared to normal flight prices to Minneapolis (MSP).

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Best month to fly

Going found the most deals with travel dates in May.


Worst month to fly

Going found the least deals with travel dates in June.


Top tips for finding a cheap flight to Minneapolis (MSP)

Book in the Goldilocks Window

There’s no specific day of the week when airline tickets are magically cheaper, but we do have tips on how far in advance of a trip you should book your tickets to get the best deal. We call it the Goldilocks Window—not too soon, not too late. For domestic flights it’s about 1–3 months before your trip, and for international trips it’s about 2–8 months out.

If you’re traveling for an event and have specific dates or if you plan to travel during peak season, start looking on the earlier side. If you plan to visit Minneapolis for the State Fair in August, for example, start looking for flights in April. People always ask about last-minute deals and, sadly, they don’t really exist, especially not during busy travel periods. We see prices rise consistently at the 21-, 14-, and 7-day marks before flights, so book before those points if at all possible.

Use the Greek Islands Trick

No matter how often you check fares, some flights never seem to get any cheaper. But before you give up on visiting Minneapolis in the summer, try our beloved Greek Islands Trick. Despite the name, it works all over the world. The goal is just to get as close to your destination as possible for the cheapest price, then figure out the last leg via a budget airline, train, bus, or rental car.

If you really want to fly from San Francisco to Minneapolis during a busy weekend, flights could be upwards of $500. Instead, check out flights to LaCrosse, Fargo, or Madison, then rent a car for the final leg. It takes more time, but it could be worth it during busy travel periods.

Search alternative departure airports

This is like the Greek Islands trick but on the departure side. Let’s stick with the San Francisco example. If flights from SFO to MSP are out of your price range, look for flights from Oakland or Sacramento. You could even look for flights from Denver or LA. If you find an amazing deal, it might be worth a short, cheap flight to one of those cities first. Again, it takes more work, but playing around with your departure airport and seeing what kinds of deals you can find could help you save a few hundred bucks, which you can then use on an amazing meal or accommodations in Minneapolis.

Fly when it’s cheaper

The cheapest time to visit Minneapolis is December–February, when temperatures hit bone-chilling levels and there are far fewer events. The city hibernates, and tourists are few and far between. However, Minneapolis has great museums and restaurants, so if you plan to spend time indoors or don’t mind negative wind chills, this is a great time to visit for deals. You can also attend the Saint Paul Winter Carnival, which has ice carving, a winter run, a snowplow competition, food, fireworks, and more.

Our favorite times to visit are the shoulder seasons, periods right on the edge of the high and low seasons. That’s late April to May or September to October in Minneapolis. Prices will be cheaper than during the peak season, and the weather will still be fairly nice, with wildflowers or gorgeous fall colors.

If you want to visit during peak season, we don’t blame you. Summer is busy in Minneapolis for a reason. But try to fly on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, or Saturdays if you can. Those are generally the cheapest days to fly, while Fridays and Sundays are the most expensive.

Set alerts for specific trips

Set up fare alerts for your travel dates, and you’ll get an email when the fare drops. Simple! Be sure to set multiple alerts if your dates or airports are flexible. We recommend setting alerts up before the Goldilocks Window we talked about so you see the best deals roll in.

Minneapolis is well-served by domestic airports. Dozens of US cities offer nonstop service to MSP, and most US-based travelers will be able to reach the city on a direct flight. Visitors from some cities in Mexico, Canada, and Europe can also visit on a nonstop flight. From elsewhere, you’ll have to make a connection. Still, most visitors can reach Minneapolis with just one stop.

Frequently asked questions about flying to Minneapolis (MSP)

What is the airport code for Minneapolis Saint-Paul International Airport?

The airport code for Minneapolis Saint Paul International Airport is MSP.

When is high season in Minneapolis?

High season in Minneapolis runs from June to August, when the weather is warm and sunny and people visit for festivals, farmers markets, and the Minnesota State Fair.

When is the best time to visit Minneapolis?

June–September is the best time to visit Minneapolis, though it’s also the busiest. Warm weather allows you to embrace the hundreds of lakes, and there are dozens of events throughout the season, including Twin Cities Pride in June and the State Fair in late August/early September.

October is also a nice month to visit for fall colors; it’s also cheaper than summer. Winter is by far the cheapest time to visit, but it can be very, very cold. Minnesotans embrace the chill with the Saint Paul Winter Carnival, hockey on Lake Minnetonka, and polar plunges.

Does MSP have its own on-site hotel?

The InterContinental Minneapolis-St. Paul Airport Hotel is connected to the airport near Terminal 1. It has two restaurants, a cocktail bar, event spaces, and free wifi. Rooms start at $180 per night.

What lounges are available at MSP?

  • Terminal 1: Escape Lounge
  • Concourse C: Delta Sky Club (near Gate C12)
  • Concourse E: Escape Lounge, PGA MSP, United Club (near Gate E6)
  • Concourse F: Delta Sky Club (near concourse entrance)
  • Concourse G: Delta Sky Club (near Gate 17)

All three Delta Sky Clubs at MSP have snacks, non-alcoholic and alcoholic drinks, flight monitors, TVs, and free wifi. Access to the lounge is free for SkyClub members, Delta and Air France first class or business class passengers, SkyMiles Reserve cardholders, and Amex Platinum cardholders with a Delta boarding pass.

The United Club also has snacks, a full bar, free wifi, flight monitors, newspapers and magazines, and TVs. Access is free for United Club members, travelers flying first or business class on United or its Star Alliance partners, United Club Infinite cardholders, and some elite-status United or Star Alliance frequent flyers. Day passes are also available for $59.

The Escape Lounge is open to all travelers for a $45 walk-up fee or $40 pre-book fee. American Express Platinum and Delta SkyMiles Reserve cardholders receive complimentary access to the lounge. It has snacks, a full bar with a craft cocktail list, TVs, and free wifi.

The PGA Lounge is also open to all travelers and has TVs, a full bar, newspapers and magazines, fax machines and printers, and free wifi, plus golf simulators with PGA instruction and a putting green. Access to the lounge is $10, though there are additional charges to use the golf simulator, starting at $40 for 30 minutes.

What are the rules for traveling with pets to MSP?

While in the airport, pets must be in a carrier. Airlines have their own rules for traveling with pets, so it’s recommended to check with your airline before bringing your pet to the airport. Those visiting Minneapolis from outside of the US should check USDA regulations, which include specific vaccinations for pets and obtaining a health certificate before departure.

How far is MSP to Minneapolis?

The airport is about 12 miles from Downtown Minneapolis, about a 20-minute drive in light traffic. If you plan to arrive during rush hour, allow for a bit more time.

What are the transportation options for getting from MSP to Minneapolis?

There are a number of options to get from MSP to Minneapolis.

  • By rideshare or taxi: Taxis pick up outside the airport at the Ground Transport Center area. A ride downtown will cost $39–$49 depending on the time of day. There are designated pickup points for Uber and Lyft, either from Level 2 of the Green parking ramp outside Terminal 1 or Level 2 of the Purple parking ramp outside Terminal 2. These cost $20–$40 depending on the time of day and demand.
  • By public transportation: The METRO Blue Line Light Rail runs every 12–15 minutes from 4am–11:30pm and takes about 25 minutes to reach downtown. Signs throughout the airport guide you to the platform. A one-way trip is $2.50; tickets can be purchased from a ticket machine or on the Metro Transit App. The Blue Line also stops near Target Field, the Warehouse District, U.S. Bank Stadium, and Nicollet Mall.

How long is the flight to Minneapolis?

The flight time to Minneapolis depends on where you’re traveling from. From Chicago, Detroit, Bismarck, Denver, or elsewhere in the northern states, it will be a short 1–2 hour flight. From the Northeast it will be closer to 3 hours, and from the Southeast and Texas it will be around 2.5 hours. From the West Coast it will be around 3.5 hours.

You can fly directly to Minneapolis from some cities in Mexico, Canada, and Central America with flight times from 3–5 hours. Cities in Europe that offer direct flights include London, Paris, Frankfurt, Dublin, Amsterdam, and Reykjavik. Most of them take around 9.5 hours. From elsewhere in the world you’ll have to make a connection, and your flight time could range from 10–20 hours.

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* Prices are per person and include all taxes & fees in USD. All prices were accurate at the time of publishing, however, prices are not guaranteed, as airline pricing can change by the minute. Average Going fares are based on average prices of deals found by Going.

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