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  • Sandydoc 17 posts

    I will need to buy cash tickets for next years summer holidays. What are peoples to for getting the best value cash fares.
    What’s wrong with using the cheapest OTA via skyscanner if getting inflexible tickets anyway?
    I see lots of airlines have small deals with cash back sites.
    Are dates likely to dip just after Christmas?
    Thanks

    NorthernLass 6,692 posts

    Which destinations/airlines are you looking at?

    Sandydoc 17 posts

    Currently looking at Bali for next August

    Richie 886 posts

    Do you want to deal with an OTA when things change and their IT doesn’t work, they don’t reply to e-mails and don’t answer the phone?

    yonasl 922 posts

    I wouldn’t buy a ticket because of some cash ack or similar offer.

    It is fair to say that when you buy cash tickets you are sort of stuck having no recourse to refunds or anything.

    That is why I like to check the BA holiday page and build my own flight plus hotel in Heathrow the night before. That sometimes gives you the same price but you just need to pay a small deposit you can afford to lose of plans change.

    In your case, why not check UK-Singapore and then just with Air Asia to Bali?

    You could book LON-Singapore-Long layover to get luggage and check in-Bali and maybe add a hotel night in Singapore before you fly back to make it a bookaeable holiday.

    I would use OTAs such as Expedia but never the smaller companies. To give you an example, a friend was travelling abroad and flying back when UK’s systems collapsed. Because her ticket was with an OTA she couldn’t rebook herself on the next flight. Instead had to struggle to contact them via some AI Chatbot. Meanwhile direct customers simply got put on another flight.

    The real Swiss Tony 633 posts

    Adding my +1 to the “don’t use OTAs” call here. When it goes wrong, you’re essentially lost and if the airline fails you, s75 doesn’t apply either.

    you could look at a package from someone like Trailfinders or BA Holidays, where you bundle a few bits together, get to access the cheap “IT” airfares and also benefit from only paying a deposit upfront. With interest rates high, being able to sit on a few grand at 6% counts for something.

    Very difficult to call when prices are actually high now because the market isn’t following pre-COVID norms.

    TooPoorToBeHere 229 posts

    I’d use an OTA if it saved hundreds – which does sometimes happen – but not to save small amounts. All the cautions above apply.

    I’d prefer to deal with a UK entity that can be sued. Getting a refund from opodo/edreams was a saga of some length and complexity.

    I like BAH. Call centre have been good for me, the deposit upfront terms are useful, and their booking engine has thrown up useful and unusual routes before. TCB paid out OK on my last one. Missed a connecting flight due to irrops and got rebooked by BAH direct on a competitor without asking.

    BA Flyer IHG Stayer 1,853 posts

    Whilst OTAs are fine when nothing goes wrong or there is only a minor schedule change they can be right mares to deal with if something major goes wrong.

    As to cheap flights ignore anyone who says that the best fares are only released on the 2nd Tuesday after the 2nd Sunday of the month.

    NigelHamilton 151 posts

    Can I (with declaration of self interest) make an important distinction here between OTAs and ITAs (independent travel agents). If you get a good one, they will help you out to a far greater extent than a direct booking when something goes wrong and certainly better than an OTA.

    Such as the call I took this Autumn from a client at 7am, tracking his Italian train in real time and booking him on the next one despite his non-refundable ticket not technically being valid once he’d missed it. You get what you pay for.

    John 949 posts

    I am happy to use random OTAs for cheap short-hauls that are for next week or so that I am definitely taking / happy to lose the money if something unexpected comes up.

    Long hauls I will only use Expedia or Amex Travel and only if there is some reason I don’t want to book it direct (e.g. the airline website sucks or has odd fees). I would use a physical travel agent if they charge the same price as google says the airline is meant to charge

    Sandydoc 17 posts

    I am happy to use random OTAs for cheap short-hauls that are for next week or so that I am definitely taking / happy to lose the money if something unexpected comes up.

    Long hauls I will only use Expedia or Amex Travel and only if there is some reason I don’t want to book it direct (e.g. the airline website sucks or has odd fees). I would use a physical travel agent if they charge the same price as google says the airline is meant to charge

    Thanks. Do you ever find Amex travel cheaper for flights than the airline?

    kiley 135 posts

    I just bought a cash fare with Finn Air direct (using amexgold) from London to Bangkok for Nov 2024

    Very competitive price for flexible ticket and they offer a cheaper non flexible ticket if your not checking bags or bothered about using the lounge.

    BBbetter 452 posts

    I just bought a cash fare with Finn Air direct (using amexgold) from London to Bangkok for Nov 2024

    Very competitive price for flexible ticket and they offer a cheaper non flexible ticket if your not checking bags or bothered about using the lounge.

    Could you share the cost kiley? Assume J?

    kiley 135 posts

    Circa 2.2k for rtn biz classic fare ( with checked bags and lounge)
    Had to pay steep premium to take my bike box ontop. I thinknit wat 150 pounds each way 😪

    There are fares for under 2k on finn air website if you are flexible with dates in November 2024.

    I’m actually going to Phu Quoc and cambodia but flights from London to phu quoc and cambodia were eye watering.

    So I plan to use low cost carrier (or skyward miles on Bangkok airways) from Bangkok to other destinations.

    Lady London 1,939 posts

    £150 each way for a bike box longhaul seems one of the more reasonable fares I’ve heard. British Airways was wanting about £220 for a normal suitcase longhaul last time I looked.

    kiley 135 posts

    £150 each way for a bike box longhaul seems one of the more reasonable fares I’ve heard. British Airways was wanting about £220 for a normal suitcase longhaul last time I looked.

    I’m off the chile in 3 weeks and iberia are charging €50 each way!

    There are other airline who will count bike as an item of your standard checked allowance.

    220 for ba feels a bit over the top for a suitcase. But does justify the extra for finn air J tickets with checked allowance.

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