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Delta Expands Service in Upstate New York

Posted by Tracy Stewart on Thursday, March 29, 2007

As of April 8, Delta will expand service in upstate New York with 22 new Delta Connection flights between Ogdensburg, Watertown, Albany, and Massena to Boston. Many of these cities were formerly US Airways monopolies. For those traveling within New York State, service will be available between Albany and Watertown with continuing service to Ogdensburg and Massena. Big Sky Airlines, which currently serves 18 cities in Montana, Idaho, Wyoming and elsewhere, has partnered with Delta to operate these routes.

To learn more, visit Tracy Stewart's profile on Google+

Categories: Domestic US Fares, Airline Industry News

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Malaysia Phantom Sale

Posted by Tracy Stewart on Thursday, March 29, 2007

When we read the press release detailing Malaysia Airlines' latest sale, we headed over to their site for a closer look. Los Angeles and Newark to India, Sri Lanka, Pakistan, and the Maldives, with economy class fares starting at $830 round-trip and reduced business class fares available for $3,320 round-trip were two of the deals being touted. Sounds pretty good, right? All tickets must be purchased by May 31, for departures through now and May 31, and departures from August 16 through November 30 as well. And expect a surcharge of $30 to $40 applied on weekend travel from Los Angeles.

Well, as of today, there is no mention of this sale on malaysiaairlines.com. Is this what it feels like to be stood up? What gives? Thinking that maybe these sale fares might be available but just not mentioned directly on their website, we began to poke around.

  • Los Angeles to Karachi $920 round-trip: We found $1,569 round-trip, with tax, on Malaysia Airlines, using August 16 through August 23 as our travel dates. Plugging in the same dates on Orbitz, we did find a lower fare of $1,412 on China Airlines. And Malaysia Airlines comes in at third place, with a fare of $1, 417, which is a tad better than what we found on their website. Both fares include two very long and, we imagine, grueling connections. For those looking to cut down on travel time, Orbitz lists the best (and only) one stop-over flight with Thai Airways/Cathay Pacific for $5,714 round-trip. Hmmm, maybe making those two connections doesn't seem as long or grueling anymore.


  • Newark to Mumbai $950 round-trip: We found $2,412 round-trip on Malaysia Airlines, traveling on May 7 through May 16. A quick search on Orbitz, using the same dates, gave us a much lower fare of $1,086 round-trip with Alitalia.


  • Newark to Colombo Sri Lanka $900 round-trip. We found $2,330 round-trip on Malaysia Airlines, traveling on May 14 through May 31. Checking these dates on Orbitz gave us $1,088 round-trip with Virgin/Sri Lankan Airlines.


  • Los Angeles to Hyderabad, India $850 round-trip. Using September 12 through September 26 as our travel dates, we found $1,422 round-trip as the lowest fare. Again, we checked this exact trip on Orbitz and found $1,149 on Air India, with two stop-overs. For a tad more, $1,310, you can cut back on a stop-over with Thai Air.

We've praised Malaysia Airlines in the past for having such fantastic sales, and for being so spot-on when advertising these fares. If they say it costs $680, you can be sure that it will. So we're sure this is some sort of temporary flub. Sales are always given a prominent space on their website, and we have faith that the empty block reserved for Top Online Offers, which now reads 'coming soon', may soon house this deal. We'll definitely be keeping watch, and so should you.

To learn more, visit Tracy Stewart's profile on Google+

Categories: Asia/Australasia Airfares

Members Only, says Spirit

Posted by Tracy Stewart on Thursday, March 29, 2007

Want to save a little money on your next Spirit Airlines flight? It might cost you. Spirit Airlines now requires those who wish to take advantage of their insanely low (as in 8 cents or $9) fares to join their $9 Fare Club. It's $9 for a three month trial, which will then evolve into an annual $29.95 fee. Though it may strike you as an odd and unSpirit-like maneuver (you know, actually asking customers to pay more than half a penny for something), it could still end up saving you more money than you'll spend to join. This is especially true for those who travel along these routes regularly and those living in Florida, where Spirit is based and where those $9 fares to the Caribbean are most abundant. Sign up for a Free Spirit MasterCard and receive complimentary membership, just so long as you make at least one purchase per month on the card.

For those who don't feel like forking over the membership fee, don't worry. You can still take advantage of some Spirit sales, like the current Big S sale which is set to expire Friday, March 30, at midnight. This sale is valid for travel on Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays between April 17 and May 22, as well as Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays between June 5 and June 13, and also Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays between August 21 and December 12. Some sample fares, each-way based on round-trip purchase, before taxes, include:


  • Detroit to Boston $49 each-way


  • Myrtle Beach to Nassau, Bahamas $99 each-way


  • New York to Ft Lauderdale $79 each-way


  • Atlantic City to Orlando $69 each-way


  • Los Angeles to Detroit $99 each-way


In most cases, these fares are readily available, but we imagine seats will go fast. Again, this sale ends at midnight on Friday, March 30.

To learn more, visit Tracy Stewart's profile on Google+

Alitalia Sale from New York, Chicago, & Boston

Posted by Tracy Stewart on Thursday, March 29, 2007

Alitalia is having a sale on travel from New York, Boston, and Chicago to select international destinations. This sale is good for departures from April 1 through May 31, and requires a Saturday night stay, as well as a maximum stay of 1 month. All purchases must be made by April 1. Here's a little round-up of these fares:

  • Boston to Budapest $654 round-trip, with tax: We searched for April 3 through April 12 on Alitalia and found $895 round-trip, with tax. Just as we were about to give up, we noticed a box above our fare results which read "Save 241 USD. Are you flexible?" And by leaving one day earlier, we found the advertised $654 fare. That's much better than what we found on Orbitz. Using the same dates, SwissAir was the lowest fare at $838 round-trip, with tax.

  • New York to Paris $574 round-trip, with tax: Our initial search on Alitalia, using April 4 through April 10 as our travel dates, turned up a whopping $1,790 round-trip fare. Again, choosing the 'are you flexible?' option above our search results gave us a fare of $1,449, departing one day later. But get this! We then clicked on the $1,449 fare for further details and were magically teleported to a very bookable $623 round-trip. What kind of fun-house trick is that? Next, we searched the same dates on Orbitz and found a lower fare of $545 round-trip, with tax, with United/Lufthansa.

  • Chicago to Sofia $621 round-trip, with tax: We searched for April 17 through April 26 on Alitalia, and found $1,048 as the lowest fare. Again, choosing the 'are you flexible?' option above our fare results, we were able to find a lower fare of $630 round-trip, with tax, available one day before and after our initial selection. And this time, the cheaper fare wasn't hidden either. A follow-up search on Orbitz listed a lower fare of $611 round-trip, with tax, using the same dates, on United/Lufthansa.

  • Boston to Tunis $811 round-trip, with tax: Alitalia listed the lowest fare as being $1,221, again with the option to save a bit if we were flexible with our dates. Being flexible managed to bring our total down to $1,144. And that's what we found to be the lowest on Orbitz too, excluding their $11 booking charge.

Although we're pleased that Alitalia now advertises their sale fares at the total round-trip sum, including all taxes, we can't help but feel that these advertised sale fares require an extraordinary amount of effort to find. And in most cases, these sale fares aren't the best available for these routes.

To learn more, visit Tracy Stewart's profile on Google+

Categories: Europe/Africa/Middle East Airfares

Low Summer Fares to Spain on Air France

Posted by George Hobica on Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Who says you have to pay the proverbial arm and a leg for summer travel to Europe. Air France has amazingly low $460-70 RT, tax included fares from JFK to Spain. Check out our fare of the day.

These low fares are valid from New York. However, let's say you live in Seattle and want to fly to Spain. For August travel, you might be looking at $1220 RT with taxes. Seattle to New York we're finding for $244 RT with tax. So do the math. $460 + $244 = $704, fare less than $1220. So break up your trip in New York (hey, it's a long way from Seattle to Spain!) and save over $500 per person.

To learn more, visit George Hobica's profile on Google+

Categories: Europe/Africa/Middle East Airfares

American Airlines European Sale

American Airlines has announced a fare sale from major U.S. airports to some of its European destinations, including Frankfurt, London, Madrid, Manchester, Paris, and Zurich.

Fares are competitive, but not always exceptional, and depending on your individual itinerary you might find better deals with other airlines, so be sure to use the Orbitz 30-day flexible search tool to plan your travels.

However, one notable feature of the sale is the generous 60-day maximum stay on fares to London and Manchester, which allows you to spend June and most of July in Europe for what is essentially the price of a spring ticket. As you can see from the samples below, we found fares available for even longer stays.

  • Buy before March 29
  • Leave before May 27
  • Return before June 27 (from continental Europe) or
    July 27 (from United Kingdom)

Fare samples
All fares are calculated for longer stays (depart 21/05 or 22/05, return 17/07 or 18/07), rounded for clarity, and include all taxes.

  London Manchester
New York $560* $560
Boston $600*    $600
Atlanta $690 $690
Miami $670 $680 (2)
Chicago $680* $680 (3)
Dallas $690 $715
Houston $710 (1)     $705
Los Angeles         $710 $710 (2)

*  We also found fares for stays beyond the official 60-day maximum.
1) $700 on British Airways (non-stop)
2) $620 on US Airways
3) $600 on US Airways

Categories: Europe/Africa/Middle East Airfares

Fantastic Finnair Fare Sale

Fly from New York (JFK) to the beautiful Scandinavian capitals -- Copenhagen, Oslo, and Stockholm -- as well as Gothenburg on friendly Finnair for an amazing $395 round-trip, including all taxes and fees.

That's hundreds less than some other airlines are charging.

Sale ends March 31 and is good for travel between April 11 and May 10. This great fare is only available directly from the USA site of Finnair.com.
Categories: Europe/Africa/Middle East Airfares

Spirit Airlines' $8 Sale Expires Tonight!

Posted by Tracy Stewart on Friday, March 16, 2007

THIS SALE HAS EXPIRED. See their new sale.


Join Spirit Airlines' $9 Fare Club for access to their current St Patrick's Day promotion, the Ocho O'Shea Sale. Fares range from $8, $44, and $88 one way. And that's sort of where the catch comes in. These fares are based on round-trip purchase, and the valid dates sometimes make it difficult to book a $16 round-trip fare for a reasonable 7 day trip. Most likely, you'll pay $8 for one segment of your trip and full fare for your return segment. But that's still often less than what these routes typically go for. Here's a sampling of a few $8 fares:

  • Ft Lauderdale to Port Au Prince $8. Available on May 4, May 6, May 13, May 17.
  • Port Au Prince to Ft Lauderdale $8. Available on May 11, May 18, May 20, May 27.
  • Detroit to Myrtle Beach $8. Available on August 24, August 26, August 27, August 28.
  • Myrtle Beach to Detroit $8. Available on September 10, September 12, September 13, September 14.
  • Atlanta to Orlando $8. Available on May 9, May 10, June 1, June 2.
  • Orlando to Atlanta $8. Available on May 18, May 19, June 1, June 2.
  • New York to Detroit $8. Available on May 17, May 18, June 14, June 15.
  • Detroit to New York $8. Available on May 28, June 7, July 24, and July 25.
All purchases must be made by midnight tonight, March 17, so hurry! You can view the complete list of sale fares here.

To learn more, visit Tracy Stewart's profile on Google+

Categories: Domestic US Fares, Caribbean/Mexico/Latin America Airfares

Seattle to Paris: New Service on Air France

Posted by Tracy Stewart on Thursday, March 15, 2007

As of June 11, Air France will begin the only nonstop service between Paris and Seattle. This flight will depart from Seattle at 4:55 p.m. and arrive the following day at 11:40 a.m. in Paris-Charles de Gaulle. Flights returning from Paris depart at 1:20 p.m. and arrive in Seattle at 2:35 p.m. the same day. Introductory sale fares for this route start at $662 one-way, based on round-trip, and are good for travel through September 10. Purchases must be made 21 days in advance and include a maximum stay of 30 days. A closer look at these sample introductory fares below:

  • Seattle to Paris $662 one-way: That's $1,324, plus the $98 in taxes, which puts us at $1,422 for travel from June 12 through June 20. We were able to find this trip for $1,123 on Air Transat, but that includes two long and bothersome stops- one in Vancouver and one in Montreal. Continental comes in second place, with a fare of $1,259 and only one layover in Newark.

  • Seattle to Barcelona $600 one-way: Good luck finding this fare. It seems to be completely sold out, although we were able to find $662 one-ways for June 7 through June 11. The $1,429 fare on Air France sounds like a lot of money for such a short trip, n'est pas? We found a fare of $1,265 round-trip on Delta Airlines for June 7 through June 14, by searching ITAsoftware.com.

  • Seattle to Moscow $718 one-way: We had better luck finding this fare, which ends up being $1,555 round-trip, with taxes, for travel on June 27 through July 4. Searching the same travel dates on ITAsoftware.com, we found a fare of $1475 on Aeroflot, the national carrier of Russia.

  • Seattle to Venice $713 one-way: This comes to $1,546 round-trip, with tax, using August 2 through August 12 as your travel dates. Using the same dates, we searched ITAsoftware.com and found $1,421 round-trip, with tax, on US Airways.

To learn more, visit Tracy Stewart's profile on Google+

Categories: Airline Industry News, Europe/Africa/Middle East Airfares

United "Sale" to Europe

Posted by George Hobica on Tuesday, March 13, 2007

United is touting a Jolly Old London sale on its site, for purchase through the end of business on March 14.

How jolly is it? Supposedly fares, such as Chicago/London for $214 each way before taxes and surcharges, are good until May 17, so our first stab at finding fares was leaving Chicago May 4 and coming back May 13, for which we got a final price of $626 RT. That's not awful, but American and Virgin are charging $510 for nonstop flights on those dates, which is a much better deal.

Checking Baltimore to London ($190 each way before taxes according to UA's site) leaving April 13 and returning a week later, we found $928 RT on United via connecting flights vs. $725 RT nonstop on BA.

Clearly, this isn't much of a sale. We'd skip it if we were you.


To learn more, visit George Hobica's profile on Google+

Categories: Europe/Africa/Middle East Airfares
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