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Old 11-09-2017, 10:28 AM
 
66 posts, read 35,806 times
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The last time I went to FL to visit the relatives, I noticed there was a charge from priceline. What's stopping me from finding a flight on priceline and then just calling up the airline to make a reservation?
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Old 11-09-2017, 10:30 AM
 
Location: Self explanatory
11,613 posts, read 4,918,583 times
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Nothing, plenty of folks do it all the time. Sites like priceline just scour for lowest fares, and people generally think that they can get a better deal online versus dealing directly with the airline....sometimes it works out, sometimes it's more expensive.
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Old 11-09-2017, 10:41 AM
 
Location: San Antonio/Houston/Tricity
37,989 posts, read 55,756,232 times
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Check all sources - sometimes you get a great deal with fare aggregator and travel metasearch engine like Kayak, or others - sometimes with the airline direct.
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Old 11-09-2017, 11:16 AM
 
9,797 posts, read 5,008,332 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sunbelt57 View Post
The last time I went to FL to visit the relatives, I noticed there was a charge from priceline. What's stopping me from finding a flight on priceline and then just calling up the airline to make a reservation?
Hell, don't even call. Just go on their website and purchase it that way.
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Old 11-09-2017, 12:13 PM
 
12,287 posts, read 18,405,549 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sunbelt57 View Post
The last time I went to FL to visit the relatives, I noticed there was a charge from priceline. What's stopping me from finding a flight on priceline and then just calling up the airline to make a reservation?
Nothing, in fact it should be standard practice. The general consensus for years here was to ALWAYS skip booking airline tickets with these 3rd party sights. You pay more and lose control of your itinerary if things go wrong using these 3rd party sites.

The preferred method is to use an airfare search engine (there are probably better ones than priceline) and book directly through the airlines website.
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Old 11-09-2017, 12:26 PM
 
Location: Niceville, FL
7,680 posts, read 16,101,231 times
Reputation: 7700
Google Flights (and its geekier sibling ITA Matrix) are generally good metasearch engines for airline pricing, and they'll give you useful information like fare rules to understand how the airline builds and prices a given ticket. You then take your search results and recreate it on the airline's web site.

1. Sometimes the online travel agency (Priceline, Expedia, Orbitz, etc.) will still have access to deep discount or consolidator fares not available directly from the airline.

2. The typical airfare search engine does cache a fair amount of data in the name of returning quicker results to you. Sometimes it will show you a ticket type that actually sold out 30 minutes ago and when you go to book, you're shown a higher price.It's an attempt at greater computing efficiency and not a scam.
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Old 11-09-2017, 12:46 PM
 
Location: Phoenix, AZ > Raleigh, NC
15,070 posts, read 19,008,543 times
Reputation: 24172
If you CALL the airline, you'll be paying an extra fee. Book online only.

Personally, I never use 3rd party sites for booking. If a flight cancelled, delayed or whatever, i don't want to deal with the 3rd party to fix my situation. I've never found that the savings is significant enough to justify the possible hassle

Those sites are GREAT for searching flights (except SWA which does not participate.)
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Old 11-09-2017, 12:53 PM
 
32,073 posts, read 32,974,848 times
Reputation: 14950
The best way to book is directly on an individual airline's website!
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Old 11-09-2017, 12:58 PM
 
Location: North State (California)
39,503 posts, read 2,983,837 times
Reputation: 12901
Yes just go directly to the airlines website. I always check out a few before I decide.
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Old 11-09-2017, 01:01 PM
 
Location: Jollyville, TX
3,850 posts, read 9,441,266 times
Reputation: 4402
Quote:
Originally Posted by beachmouse View Post
Google Flights (and its geekier sibling ITA Matrix) are generally good metasearch engines for airline pricing, and they'll give you useful information like fare rules to understand how the airline builds and prices a given ticket. You then take your search results and recreate it on the airline's web site.

1. Sometimes the online travel agency (Priceline, Expedia, Orbitz, etc.) will still have access to deep discount or consolidator fares not available directly from the airline.

2. The typical airfare search engine does cache a fair amount of data in the name of returning quicker results to you. Sometimes it will show you a ticket type that actually sold out 30 minutes ago and when you go to book, you're shown a higher price.It's an attempt at greater computing efficiency and not a scam.
I found this for the first time ever trying to help my brother book a flight recently. Expedia was actually cheaper than the lowest price ticket on the airline's website. I will definitely check both from now on.
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