home : hot deals & information involving: travel Thursday, September 22, 2016
October Airfare Sale:
With no major holidays and kids/students a few weeks into the school year, October is the least traveled month of the year.
Therefore, October is usually the cheapest month to travel.
Airlines often have a lot of seats available at low prices from now through November 6.
Right now, every airline should offer cheap flights when booked at least 2 weeks prior to travel, except for travel on October 8-10 (Columbus Day weekend).
No need to book months in advance to get low fares in October.
Most airlines do not announce sales or promotions, so you would need to look for the deals yourself.
Sites to check:
Searches most major airlines' prices on a calendar, but not Southwest.
For example, October airfare between the east and west coasts can be found for $275 to $300 round-trip.
Between Texas and either Florida, the northeast, or California are $150 to $200 round-trip.
Travel between cities within the northeast and Chicago for $75 to $150 round-trip.
Airfare between cities on the west coast are $80 to $115 round-trip.
Beware that most airlines in the US charge for baggage, and some charge for carry-on luggage.
These (hidden) baggage fees can raise the cost of travel by about $20 to $100 per person each-way.
Southwest does not have baggage fees.
Major airlines like American, Delta, Jet Blue, and United offer credit cards with the perk of free checked baggage on their airline, but those are only good deals if you fly those airlines a lot.
We recommend avoiding Frontier and Spirit because of their poor on-time records and hefty luggage AND carry-on fees.
Even if they did have great customer service, we despise the price gauging through hidden fees.
American Airlines has also treated us with horrible customer service, and we would rather pay more on other airlines than big risk travel woes.
Hotels rarely publish great rates in October to avoid tarnishing their brand, but could secretly give heavy discounts through Hotwire.
Priceline too, but we had little success with them.
There is a Hotels.com gift card deal giving $10 off of hotels, but can take a week to arrive.
Wednesday, September 14, 2016
- 99% off of Some Spirit Airlines Flights, code: 99PCT
Book airfare travel on a Tuesday or Wednesday between Sep 20 and Nov 16, and apply code 99PCT to get 99% off.
Must browse "flight only" and you can use this direct link to search for 99% off fares.
Does not apply toward routes shown half way down this page.
Note that Spirit Airlines has a poor on-time record of 65% of flights on time.
Also, beware of their hefty baggage fees, carry-on fees, and snack fees:
First checked bag costs about $30 at booking time, $40 during online check-in, or $50 at the airport.
Carry-on Bags are charged a fee.
You are allowed one purse or pack limited to 16x14x12, which is about the size of an attache case or laptop bag capable of holding a 14" laptop.
All other carry-on bags, including camera bags, laptop bags, backpacks, and suitcases are charged $35 at time of booking, $45 during online check-in, and a whopping $55 at the airport.
Assigned seats cost at least $5 per seat, up to $50 per seat.
Prices go up depending on length of flight.
The "Preferred" seats in the front cost $12 to $199 each.
Most people travel with at least a change of clothes, a laptop, and a personal bag (like a purse) and would likely be charged a fee of at least $25 up to $120 each-way for the bags.
If you do not want to pay the carry-on or checked-bag fees, you will not be allowed to travel.
Keep this in mind, since it can be misleading to see a "$9" each-way airfare which could actually cost you $100 or more after fees.
Saturday, September 3, 2016
Los Angeles, San Francisco, or Seattle to Southeast Asia for $450 to $600 Roundtrip:
Right now, several airlines are having a sale between Los Angeles, San Francisco, or Seattle and Southeast Asia for between $450 and $600 roundtrip.
Roundtrip from Los Angeles to Bangkok, Thailand for about $468 for select dates between now and late October.
Roundtrip to Manila, Philippines for about $450 from Los Angeles or $500 from San Francisco for select dates between now and early December.
Roundtrip from San Francisco to Bangkok, Thailand for about $585 for select dates between now and early December.
Roundtrip from Seattle to Shanghai, China for about $493 for select dates between now and early December.
Roundtrip from Seattle to Beijing, China for about $468 for select dates between now and early November.
Roundtrip from Los Angeles to Siem Reap, Cambodia for about $471 for select dates between now and late October.
- $15 off $150 of a Hotel Booking
Hotwire.com is currently offering $15 off when you make a hotel booking and charge at least $150.
Use code TRAVELGEEK15 during booking.
Expires tomorrow (Friday) night.
This is valid only on their Hot Rate Hotels.
They hide the hotel name until after you make a non-refundable booking.
We have used Hotwire numerous times:
When there are a lot of hotels in the area, there can be some ways to guess the hotel based on the amenities and Tripadvisor review rankings, but still almost impossible to really know which hotel they will actually put you in.
When there are few hotels in the area,
Hotwire often changes the details slightly to throw people off from guessing.
We have seen them show a hotel as 3-star but turned out to be a 4-star.
Sometimes they hid some amenities (like conference rooms or pool) that would make the hotel's identity obvious.
For a great idea of what to expect, read the review summary that Hotwire users gave each hotel.
If the satisfaction, condition, and quality rankings are all top notch but the location is much lower (example), your biggest complaint about that hotel will definitely be its location.
There is really no way to know how good the deal you will get until making the booking, but we have been pleased with Hotwire.
Only about 1 in 6 of our bookings were duds, charging about the same as the hotel's published pre-paid rates.
The rest were usually 10% to 25% off, with sometimes a lucky 5-star luxury hotel found for 50% to 75% off.
Hotwire is risky since you will not know your hotel until after you book.
If you do not like which hotel they put you in, short of claiming medical reasons or some hardship (for example, not handicap accessible), there is really no way to cancel and get a refund.
However, if a hotel is not up to standards (unclean rooms, smells, etc), they can help make other arrangements after you check-in.
There is also Priceline.com's Name Your Own Price, but we have had zero success booking a great deal through them.