Price your own Airline Tickets

Discussion in 'After Hours Lounge (Off Topic)' started by Bill Griffith, May 2, 2006.

  1. Bill Griffith

    Bill Griffith Supporting Actor

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    Has anyone ever tried this thing on Priceline?

    http://www.priceline.com/Customerser...r.asp?session_

    Only thing holding me back from giving it a try is that you have to give them a credit card number and when they find tickets at the price you put in they purchase them.

    We are planning a trip to Italy and can arrive anytime withine a 3 day window and leave a week later withing a 3 day window as well so the time issue is not a big deal. Just the auto purchasing things seems odd.

    Any tickets are running about $700 round tirp per persson to where we are flying in, and if I can gett he tickets to the same place for $500, it would definatly be better.
     
  2. Michael_K_Sr

    Michael_K_Sr Screenwriter

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    I've used Priceline for hotels and gotten good deals (but not before doing some research beforehand on the hotels available in each class.) However, I'm unwilling to use them for airfare because I want flights during specific time periods when I have to fly. For instance, if I want to fly home from our San Francisco office at the end of the business day, I can't chance that Priceline will find and charge me for an early morning flight. Likewise, when I go on vacation I want to get to my destination early, not while away the day at home waiting for an evening flight. In addition, I like being able to select my own seats online (or in the case of Southwest, pick my own seat when I board.) I would imagine that with load levels so high these days, Priceline pretty much guarantees that you'll be stuck with the least desirable seats...the middle ones. Refunds could be hard to come by as well if you have to cancel your flight for any reason. Good luck with your search though.
     
  3. DavidBL

    DavidBL Stunt Coordinator

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    I've used PL quite often for hotels as well. The airline deals don't seem to be what they used to in the early years. One place I use is http://www.biddingfortravel.com, where you can check to see if anyone has had bids accepted for similar routes or hotel areas that you are interested in. It may give you an idea of what to expect for a bid that might be accepted.
     
  4. AlyssaAnders

    AlyssaAnders Extra

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    I have also used them for hotels but not airlines - Hubby works for the airlines so I get to fly free [​IMG] However I have had family and friends use them and they dont' like that you give your credit card and when you pick a flight thats it - its your flight. So just be careful and make sure you are getting the best rate before you actually agree to it.
     
  5. Brian Perry

    Brian Perry Cinematographer

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    Just my opinion, but Priceline is a huge fraud.

    They would like you to believe that your bid is analyzed by all the various airlines at the time you place it, and that someone may be desperate enough to accept it. This couldn't be further from the truth. In reality, the lowest price the airlines will accept for any given seat is already recorded in a database. The only thing you do by bidding is potentially pay more!

    Imagine if grocery stores worked this way. You walk in to buy a gallon of milk, and there are no prices listed. You get to name your price! However, the computer is programmed not to accept less than $2.99 per gallon. If you aren't really up on the latest prices, you may submit a price of $4.15 for the gallon, which the store would happily accept. In this way, the store benefits every time someone bids more than the price that likely would have been marked or advertised out in the open.

    That's why Priceline makes you submit a credit card and only gives you once chance to make a bid. They don't want you trying to determine their lowest price by bidding low and then repeatedly submitting slightly increasing bids. And the chances of you hitting the lowest "accepted" price on the first try are remote.

    It's actually an ingenious business model...just very bad for consumers.
     
  6. SethH

    SethH Cinematographer

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    Sure, but hopefully you're an informed consumer and know that the milk isn't worth much more than the $2.99/gallon. Likewise, you should check what the going rates are for airline tickets prior to "bidding" on priceline. If the airline and/or Expedia sells the tickets for $700 each and they have set priceline to accept anything over $500, then you bid $600, you're still saving $100 more than buying through any other method. Could you have saved another $100? Yep, but only through priceline. It's really not a rip-off unless you're uninformed about current rates for the products.
     
  7. Marvin

    Marvin Screenwriter

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    Are there any better options than booking directly thru an airline's own site? I generally have used travelocity (yahoo travel) but it seems their prices are the same as what the airlines themselves charge, plus a small fee.
     
  8. Jay H

    Jay H Producer

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    I booked a flight out west last year and this year, both times I used the three big search engines, Expedia, Travelocity, and Orbitz, found the cheapest flight and then booked it directly through the airline. They are still a little cheaper cause they don't charge a fee. However, if you're doing a package deal (airfare + hotel + car), it might be worth it. Then again, the airlines sometimes offer package deals too...

    I'd just research them all, including priceline..

    Jay
     

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