Planning a spring/summer getaway? Take a look at Orbitz if you have any flexibilty with your travel dates. With three different search features, you're bound to find an airfare that will meet your schedule. Our step-by-step guide . . . just for you, our Airfarewatchdog fans!
2. The home page will automatically default to a Quick Search for a Flight. Type in the two cities and/or three letter airport codes you will be traveling From/To.
3. Near the bottom of the light blue box, click on Flexible Dates to start a flexible dates search.
4. The Quick Search box will now have 3 options for a flexible airfare search. Select one.
Option 1 - Weekends Click on the button in Option 1 and select the month in which you would like to travel. Orbitz will allow you to search for weekend trips over an 11-month period. Weekend flights depart Thursday, Friday or Saturday and return Sunday, Monday or Tuesday.
Option 2 - Bonus Days Click on the Option 2 button stating "I have some flexibility around my dates". Select your Leave and Return dates. Located in the two drop-down boxes, you may choose from one up to three days before/after your travel dates.
Option 3 - Flexible Stays Click on the button for Option 3 "I want to take a trip for ....". Select the length of your trip from the dropdown box. Choices for stays start at 2-4 days and run all the way up to 14-16 days.
5. Once you have selected your option, enter in the Travelers details at the bottom of the search box. If you prefer, check the box to receive search results for only non-stop flights.
6. Click on Find to get your flexible search results.
7. A matrix grid of possible airfares will appear with. Click on the price of the airfare that corresponds to your travel dates/itinerary.
If you selected Option 1 - Weekend Fares:
If you selected Option 2 -Bonus Days:
If you selected Option 3 -Flexible Stays:
8. Now you should have a variety of flights to select from on your screen. Scroll up and down the page to view various flights. For other flights/airlines listed in the matrix grid, click on the airline or the number of stops located under the airlines.
9. Click on the Select button for the flight that will meet your travel needs and/or itinerary.
10. Review your itinerary and start following the steps on the subsequent page(s) to finish booking your flight on Orbitz.
More and more, foreign-based airlines are resorting to special "members only" sales and promo codes that can be redeemed only on their web sites. So how do you get wind of these? Well, of course, you can read this blog, where we track them all. Or if you're a DIY kind of person, you can sign up for the airlines' email streams. For some reason, it takes a lot of diggin to find where to sign up on some airlines' web sites, so as a public service (we're all about service after all) we've gathered links to some of the larger international airlines all in one handy dandy place. Sign up today and start saving!
Click on any airline link below to sign up for newsletters and fare alerts
How can we resist? It's Mom and Apple Pie! The latest promotion from Spirit Airlines is their Mom and Apple Pie Sale. Let's add the 50's era mother to the list of memorable pitchmen for Spirit Airlines. Mom is joining the ranks of other distinguished Spirit mascots as Cheapano Fibanacci, Primo Numeri, Suki September and Sodam Lo. Honest. We're not making this up.
For this apple pie and airfare sale, you must buy your tickets by 11:59PM ET, Saturday, July 11th. Travel dates vary by departure city.
Spirit is also beginning service to Armenia, Columbia this November with one-way fares starting at $9 for club members and $28 for non-members. Non-stop service from Fort Lauderdale to Armenia will begin Friday, November 13 with one flight on Tuesdays and Fridays. Book your tickets ASAP at Spiritair.com as this offer expires tonight at 11:59PM ET (Friday, July 10th).
Remember: to receive these low fares, you must be a member of Spirit's $9 Fare Club. If you are not already a member, you can join the club for a yearly membership fee of $39.95. Take advantage of their regular $9 fares or one of their low fare promotions and you'll have already saved more than the cost of the membership.
Don't worry if you are not a member as you can still take advantage of some of Spirit's fares. Scroll down to the middle of the each fare sale page and you can see every day low fares for you as well.
After several U.S. airlines started their late summer/fall airfare battle, we were hoping that some of the international airlines would get a few sales going as well.
Air France announced today their September & October Sale between the U.S. and Europe. Once you include all the taxes and fees, some of these fares are not as low as we saw from previous sales in May or June. But if you still have to get to Europe during September or October, you can check out these Air France fares and see if they work for you.
Sample fares (fuel surcharge included below, but not all the other taxes and fees):
Philadelphia to Geneva - $182 one-way
San Francisco to Munich - $206 one-way
Boston to Barcelona - $254 one-way
Washington to Paris - $257 one-way
Chicago to Paris - $279 one-way
New York to Nice - $298 one-way
Valid for travel starting August 31 through October 24, 2009. Purchase tickets by Wednesday, July 15th, 11:59 EDT. Minimum Sunday night stay is required. 7-day advance purchase required.
Fare + All Taxes & Fees Included: We found Philly-Geneva to be $524 (9/14-9/21), $543 for San Fran-Munich (10/14-10/21), $618 for Boston-Barcelona (10/6-10/13), $630 for DC-Paris (9/10-9/17), $675 for Chicago-Paris (9/22-9/29), and $695 for New York to Nice (9/7-9/14). Sample fares were found for travel on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and/or Thursday. If you have different travel dates than the ones we picked above, the one-way fares were found during other weeks as well in both September and October.
So if you take off for Europe this September or October, send us a email or take along your Airfarewatchdog T-shirt with you. We always love to hear where our Airfarwatchdog fans have traveled. Now get out there and travel!
WestJet, a Canadian low-cost carrier, is continuing their expansion outside The Great White North by adding 11 U.S. and international destinations to its portfolio of cities. In the past week, WestJet announced that there were adding seasonal service to the following eleven destinations:
Non-Stop Service via
Atlantic City, New Jersey, USA
Lihue (Kauai), Hawaii, USA
Miami, Florida, USA
St. Maarten, Netherlands Antillies
Turks and Caicos
Cayo Coco, Cuba ( * )
Holguin, Cuba ( * )
Varadero, Cuba ( * )
( * ) The three flights to Cuba are operated as Charters through WestJet Vacations.
To acquire air only pricing, please call WestJet Vacations at (877) 737-7001.
Sample fares include:
- Calgary to Atlantic City - $159 one-way
- Toronto to Cozumel - $179 one-way
- Toronto to Miami - $149 one-way
- Vancouver to Freeport - $259 one-way
- Vancouver to Turks & Caicos - $275 one-way
Book your tickets by Wednesday, July 15th, 11:59 MT. Travel good up to January 31, 2010 with blackout dates of December 17, 2009 to January 4, 2010. Seats are limited and tickets are non-refundable.
Interested in more news about WestJet's ever-expanding route map? Check out Ben Mutzabaugh's article for USA Today which also discusses WestJet's expansion into the U.S., Mexico, and the Carribean.
If you haven't been reading the news recently, Honduras is going through some political turmoil. At the end of June, the sitting president of this Central American country was deposed by the military. With a new president in place, Honduras has received international condemnation. How this will all be resolved remains to be seen.
The U.S. State Department has issued a travel alert for Americans who will soon be traveling to Honduras. If you want to see about changing your upcoming trip, check out the links below to see what options are available.
Here are some of the airlines flying to/from Honduras and their travel waiver policies.
Saving money on your trip to paradise? We like the sound of that. Hawaiian Airlines is offering their frequent flyer members a savings of 10-20% on their next flight to Hawaii.
How can you get in on the deal? First you need to be enrolled in their frequent flyer program. Not a member of the HawaiianMiles program? It's free so sign up today.
Once enrolled, go to Hawaiian Airline's website offering this promotion. In the middle of the page, enter in your HawaiianMiles progam number and hit the submit button. An eCertificate for 10% will be placed in your account - so the next time you book a ticket on the website, you can save 10%. If you are already a current Hawaiian Airlines Visa Card holder, you will be provided with a 20% savings eCertificate.
As with any offer, please read all the rules for the eCertificate. Rules include:
- register for an eCertificate by August 31, 2009
- originating cities: Sacramento, San Francisco, San Jose, Oakland, Portland, or Seattle
- dates of travel: August 15, 2009 through March 1, 2010
- blackout dates: December 17, 2009 through January 4, 2010
- book travel by December 31, 2009
Most importantly, eCertificates are limited and are on a first-come, first served basis. So don't miss out if you are flying to Hawaii soon.
Several weeks ago we discussed the launch of JetAmerica and their entry into the low-cost carrier market by flying to smaller, underutilized airports. We also mentioned some problems that could potentially spell trouble for the start-up airline. We assumed that JetAmerica and the FAA were on the same page and that the finer details had been worked out to get the airline up and running. That now doesn't appear to be the case.
JetAmerica announced last week that they are "self-imposing a 31-day delay of the launch of its first flights, which were originally scheduled for July 13, 2009 but are now slated to take-off on August 14, 2009".
According to their news release, JetAmerica was advised (through an intermediary) in February 2009 that the FAA could accommodate their Newark operations. After JetAmerica had started selling tickets last month, the airline stated that the FAA notified them that they would have to secure landing and take-off time slots at the Newark Liberty International Airport. Thus a delay for the launch. Who's to blame for this situation? The FAA or JetAmerica for not verifying everything is in order before launching an airline?
The good news? Refunds are being offered. The bad news? If you really needed to get somewhere in the next month, you have to start all over again as your JetAmerica flight is canceled.
For flights between July 13th and August 13th, JetAmerica sent an email to those passengers that their credit card accounts would be fully refunded for any purchased ticket. Furthermore, JetAmerica will encourage those affected customers to rebook a future flight by offering them special incentives. By calling the airline's reservations center, customers affected by the delayed launch will be offfered incentives that include waiving the $10 standard reservations convenience fee, the $10 seat assignment fee, and the $20 fee for checking the first piece of luggage.
JetAmerica has set its revised launch for Friday, August 14th. Included in the news release, JetAmerica's Vice President of Operations, Brian Burling, stated, "People should not be quick to jump to negative conclusions about JetAmerica. I am particularly referring to internet bloggers and naysayers who are predicting the worst."
Uhm. Blogger? . . . Who? . . . Me? . . . Nah. You got the wrong guy. Just an ordinary citizen, passenger, world traveler here who loves to pass along low-fare information to our Airfarewatchdog fans. Interested in seeing an airline fail? No. I've been stranded before and it wasn't fun. Why would I want that to possibly happen to anyone, let alone more JetAmerica passengers?
Purchase by Friday, July 17th. 21-day advance purchase required. Good for travel on Tuesday/Wednesday. A minimum 3-night stay may be required. Seats are limited. Tickets must be bought at the airline's website.
Travel valid between July 28 through November 18th except for: travel to/from Las Vegas, Orlando, Phoenix, San Francisco, Seattle/Tacoma, and Tampa (Sept. 1 - Nov. 18); travel to/from Louisville (Aug. 2 - Nov. 18).
Sample routes include:
Kansas City to/from San Francisco or Seattle/Tacoma - $198 round-trip
Kansas City to/from Atlanta - $248 roundtrip
Milwaukee to/from Orlando - $158 roundtrip
Milwaukee to/from Tampa - $178 roundtrip
Milwaukee to/from Las Vegas - $238 roundtrip
Omaha to/from Louisville - $218 roundtrip
Omaha to/from Newark - $258 roundtrip
Other news: Starting Saturday, August 1st, Midwest Airlines will offer non-stop service between Milwaukee and Los Angeles. Previously, to fly between those cities, you had to change planes/stop in Kansas City. Roundtrip fares start at $238.
With 7 months to go, Vancouver is gearing up to host the 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games. The main Olympic Games will take place Feb. 12-28, 2010, followed by the Paralympic Games from March 12-21, 2010.
As the world converges on Vacouver, Airfarewatchdog wanted to provide you with some useful details and website links as you plan your trip to Canada.
Getting to/from Canada:
Vancouver International Airport (YVR) is one of the world's largest airports and has over 70 domestic and international airlines providing service. A few of the main international airlines with service to/from Vancouver are:
Aeromexico, Air Canada, Air China, Air New Zealand, Alaska Airlines, All Nippon Airways, American, Asiana Airlines, Austrian Airlines, British Airways, Cathay Pacific, China Airlines, China Eastern Airlines, Continental, Delta, Japan Airlines, KLM, Korean Air, LAN Airlines, LOT Polish Airlines, Lufthansa, Mexicana, Northwest Airlines, Qantas, SAS, Thai Airways, United, and US Airways.
When to buy your tickets? Well, that's your call as some people prefer to wait and see while others want to book their flights as soon as possible. But we can help you make that choice by updating your account to inclulde airfares to Vancouver (YVR). With our handy-dandy email alerts, you'll be notified of airfare deals from your local airport to Vancouver.
If you've never been to the Vancouver airport, check out the airport's terminal maps and guides they've created for arriving passengers. And! - you can even watch a virtual tour. If you need any help or have questions as you leave Vancouver, there is a section for departing passengers as well.
Accommodations. Ugh. Finding accommodations that will meet your needs can be a huge dilemma, especially if you are traveling with a big group. The 2010 Games have tried to tackle this problem by providing Olympic fans with a Destination Planner website. At the website, you can book your accommodations to be near your favorite Olympic sport and find transportation information that will help you get around the greater metro Vancouver area.
Sorry, but we couldn't resist. What is tall with brown fur, likes to play hockey and wears bright blue ear muffs? Its "Quatchi", one of the three Olympic Mascots. Quatchi, a sasquatch from the mysterious forests of Canada, along with Miga (a young sea bear) and Sumi (an animal spirit) will help promote the Olympic spirit with both kids and adults alike.
With 220 days and counting, start planning your Olympic vacation or you might be left out . . . (wait for it!) . . . in the cold.