View Full Version : How do I find good airfare?
12-20-2006, 10:19 PM
I have all the rest of my July 2007 trip booked but can't seem to find any airfare below $450 per person! :scared1: I am flying from the west coast, and have not flown this far in quite some time, but this price seems very high to me. Is this reasonable or should I wait for a better price to come out? There are 2 of us flying and I just can't imagine paying soo much for a flight. Any suggestions on how to find a good airfare? I have downloaded DING but so far the flights they advertise are only through March at the latest, do I just keep waiting? Also, it seems like all the DING fares are one way, what if I can get a good price on a flight there but not back? Should I purchase the one way? Sorry this is so long, I am just clueless and feel very lost...any help would be appreciated! Thanks
12-20-2006, 10:44 PM
You've downloaded Ding so that's a starting point.....SW has only released flights up to 5/10 at this point. You really have a few options if you're planning to fly SW. One.....you can book your flights as soon as SW releases flights for your dates......my guess would be released to the end of June probably mid to end of January.....historically that seems to be the pattern. If you book as soon as your dates are released you're best to book one ways.......you've noticed Ding's are all one ways......if you book one ways it's very easy to change only one leg of your trip if a Ding comes out for your flight.....if you've got rd trps booked you cannot cancel only one leg of the trip in order to book Ding one way. If you book as soon as flights are released it's important to keep checking the SW website for sales and specials, in additon to Ding's. Keep in mind SW will issue you a credit for the difference in the amount of the original price of the airfare and any sale/Ding price you may end up with. These credits are called Ticketless Travel Funds and need to be used within one year of the orginal PURCHASE date of travel. If you know you won't be able to use any credit within one year you can always play the waiting game and wait a bit for the prices to drop a bit...........keep in mind you're travelling during a busier vacation time so seats may be a bit easier for the airline to fill at a higher price so watch fares closely. SW is a great airline to work with.....customer service is the best and they are, I believe, the only airline in the industry which will allow you to change flights, dates, times, etc. without penalty. I think they may also be the only airline which will give you the credit if the price of your fare drops. However, keep in mind they also do not issue assigned seating but rather A,B,C boarding ........which pretty much divides the flight into three zones (four if you count the preboarders......children under 4 and their immediate families, anyone who needs assistance i.e. wheelchairs, walkers, etc.) So, you actually end up choosing where you wish to sit not where the airline assigns you. Bottom line......I agree $450 is a LOT to pay .........you should be able to get your fares from Portland to MCO for a little over $200.......maybe $230 or so.
I know we can fly from PHL to Spokane for about that price so I know it's in the ballpark.
12-22-2006, 12:04 PM
Thanks so much for the reply! I think I will just wait until the end of January before I start looking and worrying then, and will keep in mind what you said about booking one ways so I can switch to a Ding fare. Thanks again! :goodvibes
12-22-2006, 01:49 PM
Actually, $450 is a 'not bad' fare. The days of $198 fares from SEA to MCO round trip are long gone; you will be lucky to find fares under $300 on a mainline carrier.
I suggest looking at Alaska out of Seattle, or connecting through Seattle. They are also the only carrier to fly SEA-MCO nonstop.
go to travelocity.com and do a search with no dates; it will tell you the current lowest fare for your route. Right now PDX-MCO comes up at $189 return on a number of carriers through May - this is an excellent price
also try TPA as an alternate airport
(Not that this applies to the OP....) It amazes me that airfares have only increased slightly in the past 10 years, and some have fallen dramatically, yet travellers here don't seem to understand the true value of a flight. Last week someone was questioning if $59 one way was a good fare - one couldn't buy a bus ticket, train ticket, or tank of gas for that price.
12-22-2006, 02:05 PM
It's been my experience once SWA puts out their schedule for July, then the mainline carriers start pricing their flights a little better too. Our Sacramento - Orlando flights for Apr/May were $217 RT.
12-22-2006, 02:14 PM
Does not include SWA, but I find www.kayak.com to be very good in airfare research, with a LOT of flexibility to 'play' with the input after the initial search. In the past, I had always used Orbitz, but now like Kayak better.
12-25-2006, 12:02 AM
I am wondering what is zing?:goodvibes
12-25-2006, 10:06 AM
Jet Blue just released their rates through Sept 2007 and they do fly from Portland to Orlando. Depending upon when you go (i.e. mid week versus weekend), you may be able to find flights as low as $184/each way.
If you've never flown JetBlue, you may want to check it out. Although they don't have a First Class section, their seats are roomier and each seat has it's own TV screen. I frequently fly Southwest because they have great flights and rates from Hartford to Orlando, but if Jetblue flew out of Hartford, I'd take that flight if the rates were comparable.
Here's the catch, although JetBlue is showing their rates, I don't think you can book until 5 months prior to your flight. I think you should check it out, though. It will give you a good comparison w/ Southwest.
BTW, we're going in August and are anxiously waiting for Southwest to release their summer dates!
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