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Air fare curtailing trips

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We canceled a Carnival cruise to Australia once we learned our flights would be over $3,000. Will have to really save for that one or anyplace else that far away.
 

ScoopKona

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We canceled a Carnival cruise to Australia once we learned our flights would be over $3,000. Will have to really save for that one or anyplace else that far away.

I never book anything unless airfare and whatever it is I'm booking lines up.

For instance, when booking a timeshare, as soon as I start the reservation process, a timer appears. Since it only takes 30 seconds to complete the reservation, I use that time to hop on Kayak and get a general idea of what airfare will cost. If it's egregious, it is unlikely I will be able to search my way into a significantly better fare. So I cancel the reservation and try something else.
 

CalGalTraveler

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There are some great cruise deals down under but had same issue do did not book.
 

StaceyM

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Now opinion aside - I think it may just be me not really thinking / trying it - but say I'm planning on flying from Newark to IDK, San Diego (for MarBrisa) next March. What should I set up to look for a deal? If I don't find one, do I just buy the tickets "normally" at ~2 months out like I usually have done? I feel like those "cheap flights" sites never seemed that worth it, but I see people using skyscanner here and I've also seen momondo - do I just set up an ongoing search there?
Search for all NYC locations: LGA, JFK, EWR (and possibly ISP for Southwest/JetBlue/Frontier).
For San Diego, search for SAN, SNA (Orange County, 1.5 hrs drive) and LAX (2.5 hour drive). You can also look at LGB and ONT (~2 hour drive), sometimes they have more availability on award tickets even if the cash price is not competitive.

NYC-LAX is an extremely competitive route, I would count on seeing the lowest fare to LA, but sometimes SNA is easier and only slightly more expensive. Flying into SAN can often be double or triple the price to fly in LAX.

March is sometimes hard because of Spring Break. I would do some checks at 11 months/330 days out (for award tickets) and 6/4/3 months out in addition to your normal 2 months out. Southwest historically opens flights 7-9 months out; they have their dates posted at https://www.southwest.com/html/travel-tools/index.html# "We are currently accepting air reservations through March 5, 2025. On August 15, 2024, we will open our schedule for sale through April 7, 2025. This date is subject to change! Please check back frequently."
 

Blues

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I don't know about the premise to this thread. Back in the '70s and early '80s, I used to travel from SFO to ORD quite a bit, as I had lots of family in Chicago. This was back before deregulation, so prices were very consistent - $400 round trip per person. I just plugged that into an inflation calculator, and that's about $1600 pp in today's dollars. I can get a rt on SWA for about $400-600. So airfares have certainly gone way down in that time.

But I long for those long-past days, when seats were comfortable and service was fair to good. I sincerely wish the airlines would raise their rates by 50% in exchange for seats in which your knees are not in your own face and you're not squeezing next to the next seat. Not to mention free bags (not an issue on SWA), and just possibly meals!

ETA - oops, SWA is no longer a low price leader. I just looked it up, and United has flights for about $250 rt - for regular economy, not Basic.
 

Ken555

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But I long for those long-past days, when seats were comfortable and service was fair to good. I sincerely wish the airlines would raise their rates by 50% in exchange for seats in which your knees are not in your own face and you're not squeezing next to the next seat. Not to mention free bags (not an issue on SW``A), and just possibly meals!

Many domestic carriers offer more room for a fee. I receive free bags on AA since I have their credit card, and on United due to status (because of Marriott Titanium) and Delta due to flights (though I think I'm losing that one this year). United is nice since they include a checked bag up to 70 lbs at no charge with status.
 

CalGalTraveler

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Thank you @StaceyM for the reminder on LAX. I have been trying to find reasonable fares from SFO to NYC for Thanksgiving and they are outrageous. Even SWA wants $500 each way or 42k points for a 1 stop flight.

Cheaper to fly to Europe than on many domestic flights. LAX has much lower fares. I will also explore DEN since we have many points on Southwest to reposition.

Thanks again for the reminder.

BTW...I have set for points alerts on pointsyeah.com in case prices come down to earth.
 

ScoopKona

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Although it's "most of the way there," I have great luck routing through Las Vegas because basically every airport flies there. (To our continued national embarrassment.)

The city may be the pits. But the airport formerly known as McCarran is aces with me. Easy in. Easy out. Easy planning. I flew LAS-LAX and LAS-OAK on alternate months just for my mental well being. It cost anywhere from $9-$150 for the 15 years I flew those routes. Cheaper than gasoline to drive there, every single time. Back when the times lined up, San Francisco was a fun (and often $20) day-trip.

And for those who want to push the "but INFLATION" button, we just flew one-way to Burbank. $40 for the both of us, all-in.
 

louisianab

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Which is in short supply all over of late.

Choosing dates, two locations and then shopping for an airplane ticket is like choosing a cooking recipe and then going to the supermarket. "I don't care how much crab costs, I'm making Crab Louis, dammit!" Meanwhile, there's a blow-out sale on diver scallops (for whatever reason) and the shopper could have Coquille St Jacques for considerably less than Crab Louis.

There's opportunity cost for "I want what I want when I want it." If people are OK with that, no worries. But I'll never understand why people who aren't OK with refuse to make any changes to the way they travel.
this is everything. The grocery store analogy is accurate, people do that exact thing.
 

CalGalTraveler

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While I agree in general, sometimes you do not have the luxury of picking dates and locations.

For example:

Events - we want to see the Thankgiving Parade with family in NYC. This is an event week but has been on our bucket list for years.

Work or family constraints: Some people have limited dates for vacation from school and work and limited geos due to affordability or time to travel.
 

ScoopKona

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this is everything. The grocery store analogy is accurate, people do that exact thing.

I think it's fair to say it's how most people shop. We try to buy what's in season; not imported from 2,500 miles away; and therefore inexpensive. Takes a bit of research for anything that isn't actually growing on site. Sure, we can have raspberries flown in from Chile -- for a price. If for some reason we gotta have raspberries, fine. Pay the premium and we have our berries.

But I'd rather adjust what I'm making. (If someone rolls up my driveway and offers me $1,000 to bring him a tray of raspberry parfait tomorrow morning, off to costco/safeway/kta I go until I have those berries. Otherwise, I'm fine with guava, which is fruiting right now. Passionfruit is ripening, so that will be next month. And so on.)

That's how I approach travel problems as well. If I absolutely, positively must be in Copenhagen on Monday, it's going to cost a brick. But that's how the industry works. I'll pay the premium for the rare times I can't be flexible.
 

amycurl

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We have tix for the women’s soccer finals in Paris. And we are paying a heap ton for one night in Paris because there isn’t flexibility on that date (and because we couldn’t book it that far in advance, because reasons.) However, we are dollar-cost-averaging that expense by being flexible on flight dates, flying to/from different airports, as well as airlines (ended up booking Boston to BCN direct on Level for less than $2k all in for three people .) We’ll stay with family friends in BCN on both ends of that night in Paris and make the trains work. I’ve found if I pay for inflexibility on one thing, I usually can make up for it with flexibility in other parts of the trip.


Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
 

PcflEZFlng

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We have tix for the women’s soccer finals in Paris. And we are paying a heap ton for one night in Paris because there isn’t flexibility on that date (and because we couldn’t book it that far in advance, because reasons.) However, we are dollar-cost-averaging that expense by being flexible on flight dates, flying to/from different airports, as well as airlines (ended up booking Boston to BCN direct on Level for less than $2k all in for three people .) We’ll stay with family friends in BCN on both ends of that night in Paris and make the trains work. I’ve found if I pay for inflexibility on one thing, I usually can make up for it with flexibility in other parts of the trip.
Nice work. I'm heading to France in a week. Flying into London nonstop from my home city, then it's all trains afterward. I was fortunately able to book the flights far in advance, but that also constitutes a way of surrendering flexibility. Surface transportation is all gravy after that, flexibility-wise, especially in France, with their extensive train network.
 

WaikikiFirst

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Japan. Inside tip: go to Kamakura not just for the shrines/temples. From wherever you are in Japan type "takeru quindici" into google maps.
For anyone who may be interested in TQ, I recommend going to Kamakura. TQ-Shin has basically the same menu TQ-Kama has but
1. TQ-Kama has much more atmosphere. TQ-Shin is on the top floor of a hi-end dept store, which is frequently restuarant row for some hi-end(ish) restaurants in Japan. TQ bought out some other restaurant there and it is generic space. TQ-Kama is in an old-style Japanese home (not sure it ever was a home or just built to be like that).
2. TQ-Shin costs 20% more for same stuff so 4 course lunch = $24, not $20. No biggie, but hey, just another reason.
3. TQ-Shin's main courses give smaller portions.
4. go to TQ-Kama and you get to see Kamakura in the bargain.
TQ-Shin was v good, but TQ-Kama is the destination.
(otoh, if you have to try the ultra-faddish Yamazaki whiskey, TQ-Shin pours a glass for $8, nice given it is v hard to find in the US and will prob cost you $200 or more for a bottle. I did not see Yamazaki on TQ-Kama's bar and we did sit at the bar, which gives you a view of their bamboo garden.)
 

easyrider

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Generally good advice here. However I would avoid using your airline credit card to rack up miles. Most have devalued the mile so they are only worth between 1 to 1.5 cents a piece. I just use our 2% cash back card instead.

Yup, the air miles don't go as far regarding Holidays but they do well on other days. We went to New Orleans in May rt on 15,000 air mile each. So it depends. The last tickets surprised me but its a Holiday flight.

Bill
 
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