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Old 08-14-2010, 12:47 PM
 
7,983 posts, read 11,673,230 times
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or are the fares usually pretty close between them? How far out do you book? and do you buy trip insurance?
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Old 08-14-2010, 01:03 PM
 
Location: on an island
13,382 posts, read 40,936,227 times
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Have you tried a Search on this forum?
There have been a zillion threads about finding cheap airfare.
ITA
Kayak
Yapta
Bookingbuddy
Farecompare
Airfarewatchdog
Etc etc etc.

The fares are often much the same. The trick is which site discovers a sale first.
I used to book as much as 6 months ahead, but no more.
It simply does not necessarily pay off. These days I might book as late as 6 weeks ahead, it just depends on where/when I am going.
I do not completely eschew the consolidators such as Expedia, but most of the time I research the fare then go directly to the airline's website.

I've only bought travel insurance once. Many if not most people seem to think it is necessary for overseas trips. I remain unconvinced, but I suppose that is the conundrum of insurance--you never need it until you need it.
Everyone has a different tolerance for risk. It's good to check and see how comprehensive your present insurance already is. I can see how medical evacuation insurance might not be a bad thing to have if you are seriously injured.
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Old 08-15-2010, 07:10 AM
 
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I do try searches but sometimes you get too many returns based on keywords.

Consolidators? Are the above list also consolidators? I had not thought to book directly with the airlines. Thanks.

Insurance. I was asking more like trip or flight insurance if you have to cancel. At least I think there is such a thing.
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Old 08-15-2010, 08:26 AM
 
Location: on an island
13,382 posts, read 40,936,227 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Giesela View Post
I do try searches but sometimes you get too many returns based on keywords.

Consolidators? Are the above list also consolidators? I had not thought to book directly with the airlines. Thanks.

Insurance. I was asking more like trip or flight insurance if you have to cancel. At least I think there is such a thing.
The list below is search engines--not consolidators.
Quote:
Originally Posted by BlueWillowPlate View Post
ITA
Kayak
Yapta
Bookingbuddy
Farecompare
Airfarewatchdog
Etc etc etc.
But not all of them cover budget airlines. (I think ITA does cover Jetblue now, but Jetblue is not exactly super cheap anymore, anyway.)
Bookingbuddy is a search engine that checks out several consolidators at a time, and you can book from there.
Expedia, Travelocity, Orbitz: Those sites are consolidators.
You can indeed buy trip cancellation insurance. Perhaps someone else more experienced in it will answer.
If you can tell us where and when you'd like to travel, we might be able to offer more specific assistance.
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Old 08-15-2010, 09:03 AM
 
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Most convenient airport is Dayton OH, but Columbus and Cinncinnati are doable.
From the Yellowstone research I've done I'd want to fly into either Billings Mt or Cody Wy. I'd like to go anywhere leaving from the 15th or later through the end of the month - but only staying around 5 or 6 nights.

Thanks
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Old 08-15-2010, 12:02 PM
 
Location: Houston, Tx
3,644 posts, read 5,564,423 times
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I use cheaptickets.com.
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Old 08-15-2010, 11:18 PM
 
Location: The Chatterdome in La La Land, CaliFUNia
38,894 posts, read 20,182,157 times
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I used to purchase my tickets through Expedia although I did once get a good rate at Orbitz from LAX to Dallas. Two years ago, I learned something valuable regarding the benefits of booking directly with the airlines. I located a cheap rate from LA to Seattle through Alaskan Airlines website but less than 24 hours later, I discovered that I needed to arrive in Seattle earlier to make a ferry connection into Victoria. I contacted Alaskan Airlines and the agent informed me that since it was less than 24 hours, I would not be charged any ticket change rates but only pay the difference in ticket prices as the one I desired was out of a different airport. Overall, it was one phone call and a $35 charge. Had I booked through Expedia, Orbitz or some other site, I would have likely have had some serious hassles and paid considerably more to change my flight.
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Old 08-17-2010, 12:32 AM
 
Location: Dublin, CA
3,813 posts, read 3,661,019 times
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I agree:

Cheaptickets.com and
expedia.com
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Old 08-17-2010, 08:34 AM
 
Location: San Diego
5,027 posts, read 13,425,952 times
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I would never use a booking site (Expedia, Orbitz, etc.) since if you read the fine print, the airline has a right to bump you if you purchased your ticket through them if the fight is oversold. I always buy directly from the airline and am very loyal to Delta, even if others come out to be cheaper. Use kayak to check prices, but also check the airline's site.
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Old 08-17-2010, 09:34 AM
 
Location: on an island
13,382 posts, read 40,936,227 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MAK802 View Post
I would never use a booking site (Expedia, Orbitz, etc.) since if you read the fine print, the airline has a right to bump you if you purchased your ticket through them if the fight is oversold. I always buy directly from the airline and am very loyal to Delta, even if others come out to be cheaper.
Many flights are oversold.
Bumping is fairly routine no matter *how* you have booked your ticket.
Of course there is first an announcement asking for volunteers--but sometimes people don't volunteer, and get bumped anyway. Years ago I talked my way out of being bumped on a flight to Santa Fe. I was traveling with a toddler and they had mercy on me.
I understand that with third party services such as Expedia, payment might not have even gone through yet--no doubt Expedia passengers (or anyone else on a discount consolidator fare) are the lowest status and the first to go.
Of course airlines want to keep their more elite (loyal) passengers happy.

Giesela, check out Air Tran. You might find a good airfare with them.
People have told me horror stories about them but they got us out west and back (and also to New Orleans and back) just fine.
At this point, I think there is probably a horror story for every airline out there.
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