questionsdo you book flights direct through the airline or…

vote-for29vote-against
vote-for2vote-against

Airlines svck. Since a-la-carte fees, crammed planes, no leg room and negative customer service, basically I don't fly any more. So I guess my answer is "None of the above."

vote-for6vote-against

I use Cheaptickets. I've compared with the airlines and half of the time, Cheaptickets is cheaper. The website is also easier to navigate than the airlines' websites.

vote-for9vote-against

I use whatever is cheapest and has the times I want. Sometimes certain times are only offered at the airlines site and othertimes they are only offered through 3rd parties. Not sure the reason but you have to check all of them to make sure you get what you want.

vote-for6vote-against

I used Expedia once, and I will never ever use it again. They saved me $30, but gave me about a good 30 minute window to get from one part of ATL to the other for my connecting flight. I never had to do so much running in my life, and I was in the Army at one point. Now this was probably 5 or more years ago, so I would think they would have fixed these issues by now.

Ever since that happened I like to deal with airlines directly. Everything about airports can be stressful, I don't need a third party adding anything else to that list.

On a side note; SWA now has a hub at my airport. I booked my first flight through them last month & saved about $300 using their "wanna get-away" fares. If everything goes smoothly; I think I'll have found my new airline. Not to mention changing a flight, person on a flight, etc is probably easier when done through the airline directly.

vote-for16vote-against

When I'm booking airfare, I start at a 3rd party site. This allows me to see prices from multiple airlines all in one place. Once I see who's got the best price, I go to that airline's web site to actually purchase my ticket. The reason I do that is because I find that when you go through the airline's web site, you're going to see more options as far as flight schedules. You can usually get a more favorable schedule for the same price.

vote-for4vote-against

I go directly to the airline. We fly Airtran from Philly to Florida a couple of times a year and it is rare that the price

vote-for8vote-against

Ditto what @ jazzsinger said.

I normally fly Southwest but since they don't share fares with the aggregator sites I usually check Southwest first then the other aggregator sites last. If I find a lower/better fare on an aggregator site I will then go to whatever airlines site has the best deal.

In my opinion, it is always better to book through the site of whatever airline you plan to fly with.

If you book through an airlines site and there is a problem then you get to deal with the airline. If you book through an aggregator and have a problem you have to deal with the aggreator and then the airline.

vote-for5vote-against

I open up a few browser tabs, Southwest and some aggregator sites and search for days and times I need and like.. Then move into other individual airline sites to confirm best pricing and flight availability...
Last trip I took I used the AMEX site's flight planner for the first time and got a good deal in addition to being able to pay for it with accumulated points... They ask at the end how you want to pay for the trip CC or Points..
A storm front all along the east coast messed up my itinerary but I still got to where I needed to be within an hour of my planned arrival...

vote-for5vote-against

I always start with Expedia to compare rates across several airlines. I like to fly on Southwest, but they don't fly out of Baton Rouge. From my house t takes about 30 minutes longer to reach the New Orleans airport and I will happily drive there to get a direct flight. HATE changing planes!

Speaking of which, I am flying to Dulles on Thursday. Flights suck for the days I need to travel. It never makes sense to me to fly west to catch a flight to go east. Urgh! I will fly back on Monday, then leave the next Thursday for Nashville and fly back the next Monday.

Retirement is about to wear me out!

vote-for2vote-against

@eraten: Plus SWA does not charge for luggage. These a la carte fees are exceedingly annoying. I can see the logic for charging for checked luggage (although I don't like it) but one airline we flew last year also charged for carry-on. My friend and I crammed all our travel goods into one max-sized carry-on for boarding and then split is all back up once aboard.

vote-for1vote-against

I usually start on the airline site then end up going to orbitz.com and find better times and a cheaper rate. So I buy that.

vote-for2vote-against

I use Kayak.com to get an overview of the prices available, then I usually book it through the airline's website once I find a good deal. Kayak's iPhone app is pretty awesome at getting a quick read on flight prices too. I've had issues before when booking through Orbitz solving issues when a flight is cancelled or other trouble comes up. In one case I was told that the airline would have done more to find an alternative flight if it had been booked directly and since then that's the way I book it.