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Old 07-12-2017, 11:53 AM
Status: "0-0-2 Game On!" (set 4 days ago)
 
Location: The beautiful Rogue Valley, Oregon
7,307 posts, read 15,356,670 times
Reputation: 9488

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Quote:
Originally Posted by BigCityDreamer View Post
I like to book early and not have to worry about it.
Not that it always does a lot of good. We booked in March for a trip to Washington DC in October ("hey, let's go see the Smithsonian museums again before they get axed due to budget cuts!"). So far we've gotten 5 emails notifying of us changes to our flights - 2 of them were trivial flight # changes, but 3 of them have been schedule changes. Flying out of my small airport, we have two stops and I deliberately put in 2-3 hours of layover for each stop (because I'd rather wander aimlessly around an airport than sit on a plane and stew about making my next connection).

Added: I care less about getting the absolute cheapest flight than I care about which airports, layovers, seating. I frequently don't take the cheapest fare, particularly if it involves more stops or red eyes or times I don't want to be flying. I also check the business and first class fares, particularly for long flight segments. The trip to Washington, DC - 2800 miles, roughly - the first class fare is about 25% more, because the smaller planes don't really have a luxury first class, just slightly bigger, more comfy seats. When I added the "economy plus" price for all the segments, first class was about 12% more and offered 2 free checked bags, so I took it.

Last edited by PNW-type-gal; 07-12-2017 at 12:01 PM..
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Old 07-14-2017, 09:06 AM
 
Location: Phoenix, AZ > Raleigh, NC
15,078 posts, read 19,024,811 times
Reputation: 24192
Quote:
Originally Posted by Giesela View Post
I got emails from airwatchdog for a long time and everytime I clicked on something it was months out and typically not a deal.

I will have to look into google fare watcher?

54 days out is too far out. Hence, I never go anywhere.
Funny - my experience with airfarewatchdog.com is that most (not all) of the deals are less than a month out. I WISH they had more for months out, and, when thet do, I have found some terrific bargains.
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Old 07-14-2017, 10:41 AM
 
11,137 posts, read 8,548,081 times
Reputation: 28132
OP, you never explained why you can't book in advance. Is it really anxiety about getting the best price or are you just using that as an excuse to cover for a fear of traveling?


Getting a deal is great but I would not allow $50-$100 keep me from traveling at all.
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Old 07-18-2017, 07:19 AM
 
7,982 posts, read 11,665,473 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shellymdnv View Post
It really depends on if you prefer to travel based on deals or based on destinations. If you focus on deals then you will find that having to wait isn't as annoying because you know that you got such a bargain. Some of these deals can end up being several months out and some can be taken within days or weeks of booking but the main things is that the destinations may not be something you would have though of when selecting a vacation.

In addition to using sites that track error fares and travel deals, I find that skyscanner is a good site to use when price is your main factor. You can put in your starting location and time frame and then select everywhere for your destination and it will list the cheapest costs to get a each country. You will have to keep in mind that they cheapest isn't always the most convenient so there could be some trade offs.

Another important thing is to become more knowledgeable about potential alternative travel locations. For example, you may be interested in visiting Paris but it may be cheaper for you to fly into Brussels or Amsterdam and take a train into Paris, yes it would add a few hours to your journey but it could save you hundreds of dollars.

Also be sure to follow some of the low cost international carriers, airlines like WOW, Icelandair, and Norwegian often have sales to Europe and they aren't always listed in some of the fare watching sites. Another good airline to check is Emirates, I find that they often have fare sales that may be difficult to find on the various sites because sometimes they have special rules to get the bargain rate.
So I googled google fare watcher and all I found was google flights.

I looked at sky scanner and I keep running into the same problems. There is no way to search "deals"
You have to have a destination and more confusing a time frame. It then tracks price for that place at that time.

I just want a good price to somewhere out west. I just want a good price to somewhere in or near Germany.
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Old 07-18-2017, 08:37 AM
 
Location: Phoenix, AZ > Raleigh, NC
15,078 posts, read 19,024,811 times
Reputation: 24192
Quote:
Originally Posted by Giesela View Post
So I googled google fare watcher and all I found was google flights.

I looked at sky scanner and I keep running into the same problems. There is no way to search "deals"
You have to have a destination and more confusing a time frame. It then tracks price for that place at that time.

I just want a good price to somewhere out west. I just want a good price to somewhere in or near Germany.
I think I told you before: airfarewatchdog.com and set up searches for what you are looking for. They will send deals directly to your inbox. They are time sensitive so react/buy quickly if the fare and schedule fit your needs.

I'll also add that the deals you are expecting may not even exist. Planes are often flying full, and the airlines have little incentive to put on huge discounts.

Last edited by Jkgourmet; 07-18-2017 at 08:47 AM..
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Old 07-18-2017, 10:29 AM
 
629 posts, read 493,127 times
Reputation: 1241
Recently we have been booking as much as 6 months in advance if - and only if - we find a deal worth snagging. We tend to plan out the time frame for our vacations 6-12 months in advance based on my daughter's school schedule, so we know when we can get away. And we know our prices, so if a good deal pops up, we try to take it. For a domestic weekend trip we tend to book 6-8 weeks in advance. And other than for a funeral, which I unfortunately just had to attend 3000 miles away due to a relative's passing, we never book last minute flights.
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Old 07-18-2017, 10:40 AM
 
5,252 posts, read 5,176,874 times
Reputation: 6242
I just booked something internationally about three months out. I was looking at a particular date and the prices went up a bit, so instead I changed the dates and just booked it. I didn't want to see it go up for the dates I was NOW looking at. But I decided I'm going to check the dates here and there and see if there are any significant price changes. We'll see.
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Old 07-18-2017, 10:01 PM
 
Location: 2 blocks from bay in L.I, NY
1,767 posts, read 1,439,651 times
Reputation: 2743
Default six months

Quote:
Originally Posted by Giesela View Post
This is by far the biggest limiting factor in getting off my butt to travel.

I hate committing to tickets 8 weeks, 10 weeks, heck even 6 weeks in advance.
But I hate paying the price of anything closer in.

How far out do you buy tickets? When do you find the price break to be?
I've purchased tickets about six months in advance. The airline was advertising a sale and I was sure that it wouldn't become cheaper as time went on because I'm traveling in December. I bought the ticket in May 2017. I've only recently started purchasing it so far in advance. Usually, I buy a 21-days to a month in advance.
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Old 07-19-2017, 08:39 PM
 
Location: SoCal
13,236 posts, read 6,340,776 times
Reputation: 9854
I usually book the flight 8-9 months ahead.
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Old 07-20-2017, 02:22 PM
 
426 posts, read 188,926 times
Reputation: 267
I buy 6 to 8 weeks prior to.
Not the cheapest, but minimizing the stops.
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