Doctor, I need an appointment.
Updated: Oct 3, 2019
1. Avoid the medical rush hour
Whether you’re scheduling an appointment with a general practitioner or a specialist, try to avoid booking on weekdays at 10 a.m. and 2 p.m.—those are the most popular time slots to see the doctor (specifically, 10 a.m. Friday and 2 p.m. Monday, the absolute busiest times of the week). If you can’t wait weeks for an appointment, make yourself available during slower hours—like 1 p.m. or 4 p.m.—when your chances of actually getting on the books improve dramatically.
2. Snag a cancellation
Since Tuesday is the most popular day to see the doctor, the second day of the workweek also ends up having the most cancellations, meaning more last-minute openings. If you’ve got some wiggle room in your schedule and need to squeeze in a checkup or take care of a non-urgent medical matter, call the doctor’s office in the morning to see if anyone has canceled or ask the receptionist to give you a ring if a time slot becomes available.
3. Have a case of the Mondays
It might be your least favorite day of the week, but you’re most likely to luck out at the doctor’s office at the start of the workweek. Monday is the day with the most same-day appointments booked, meaning if you call in the morning, you’ll have a good chance of being seen that day. It’s also the day when you’ll spend the least amount of time in the waiting room.