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Old May 26th, 2003, 06:41 PM   #1
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Online airplane ticket purchases

I've got to purchase a plane ticket to fly to Orlando. I'm thinking about buying a ticket off a website, rather than my local travel agent. It's about $300cdn cheaper ($550 vs $840)

Does anyone here have any experience in buying online plane tickets? I'm wondering if they tack on extra fees or any other sneaky tricks like online video sites do? (look I tied this topic in to something relevant to the forum!)

The website is www.cheapticketscanada.com
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Old May 26th, 2003, 06:43 PM   #2
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I've never had problems buying tickets online. Check your receipt for hidden charges. Some airports have special taxes that may get tacked on. But those should all be disclosed on the ticket.
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Old May 26th, 2003, 06:59 PM   #3
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Best do a groups.google search on cheaptickets.com. I've heard of a number of problems.

These on-line websites function as travel agents -- if they screw up, your recourse is against them, not the airline whose ticket they sold you. The on-line ticket agents act as consolidators, meaning if you want to change your ticket you may find that you either won't be able to, or have to pay very stiff fees to do so.

What airline are you flying, and from where? You might do better trying the airline's on website. They frequently have internet specials that you won't find from a travel agent. You can also call the airline directly.

Buying a plane ticket from a travel agent is generally not the way to get the best fares. Agent's commissions have been trimmed and, in some cases, eliminated entirely, so travel agents always add on extra charges. I use a travel agent for my business travel because it's more convenient. However, I always book my leisure travel myself, directly with the airline.
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Old May 26th, 2003, 09:30 PM   #4
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Since 1996 I've traveled all over the place and haven't bought an airline anywhere but online. Mexico, Hawaii (a couple of times) about 16 other states NEVER had a problem always pay less. My wife isn't a travel agent but she really knows how to get thru all of the online travel places. Expedia, Orbitz, Sidestep(?) and a few others as well as the airlines. For our next trip to Hawaii, (this June-2 weeks) she booked our round trip air and a car for way less than some of our friends who are going with us booked air only. The savings is enough for me to play golf 3 times - YAAAAAAAA!
Online is as good as it gets! Use reputable sites and go for it.
Have Fun!!!
Don

PS--3 cruises also booked completely online including air to get to the boat :) (I love crusin')
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Old May 26th, 2003, 11:03 PM   #5
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I too buy everything online. I purchased a dozen or so airline tickets for our company to for a National Convention (NC to INDY) a couple of months ago - through ORBITZ and would use them again in a heartbeat.

Good luck.
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Old May 27th, 2003, 09:24 AM   #6
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I have booked a lot online and it's OK. Until you want to change a flight or cancel it. No problem! But the cancelling fee was equal to the fare, just recently when I bought a ticket for my dad who was then not fit enough to travel....
But I think this goes as well for rock bottom fares bought with a travel agent: the less you pay, the less flexible you are.
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Old May 27th, 2003, 01:54 PM   #7
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cheaptickets doesn't show the taxes until you actually book the flight. Thats why they appear to be cheaper, but in fact are usually the same price as everyone else.

Orbitz is good (owned by the major carriers I think), as well as going directly to the site of the Airline you want to fly on. They all have each others flight schedules (except SouthWest).
Travelocity.com is another good one.

Going directly to the carriers site can sometimes be the cheapest way of all. American I beleive is aa.com, use google to find the others. (Delta, American, United, US Air, Southwest, ValueJet, the list goes on.)

You pick up the ticket at check in. Arrive at least an hour ahead of time, and maybe 2 since you are going international.

BTW...
Orlando hotels are offering very affordable rates right now. check out cheaphotels.com and hotel.com or search for Orlando Hotels through google.

Avoid any of the Best Westerns on International Drive unless you like a dingy, smelly, worn out room.

If you are going to Disney, there is an excellent Holliday Inn Suites not far from the Magic Kingdom, and they include a breakfast buffet. There are many excellent hotels within 10 minutes of Disney, Sea World and Universal.

Disney has been cutting back on services and most (but not all)of their on property Hotels are not worth the extra money.

The new Hotels at Universal Escape are excellent, but rather pricey. Still,with visitors to the parks way down, you might get good deals even at those places.


Enjoy
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Old May 27th, 2003, 03:51 PM   #8
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Thanks for the feedback guys. I'm going to try the airlines website. Makes sense to me.

As far as accomadations, fortunately I'm staying with the co-producer of the video I'm doing.
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Old May 27th, 2003, 07:30 PM   #9
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Dylan,
I also researched the airfare discounters on the web but went with the air carrier web site to purchase on-line after a co-worker ran into big time trouble with a discounter e-ticket. He ended up having to purchase a full fare and was told to "work it out with [discounter] when you get home."

My wife and I have used a major carrier's web site to purchase tickets on-line several times in the past year and have had very satisfactory results. If that means we paid US$ 20 to 40 more than going with a discounter I wouldn't even care, it's worth the peace of mind.

Good luck in Florida, Nick
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