Read these 8 Air Travel Tips tips to make your life smarter, better, faster and wiser. Each tip is approved by our Editors and created by expert writers so great we call them Gurus. LifeTips is the place to go when you need to know about Hotels tips and hundreds of other topics.
E-(electronic) tickets are wonderful - mostly because there's nothing to lose or forget! A few times when you want to have a paper ticket, in my opinion, is when you are traveling internationally or if you have a multi-airline ticket. Reasons include the possibility of faulty communications between airline systems or lack of compatible (or reliable) programming in other countries. If there is a strike or other disruptive action pending with your carrier, you also want to have your travel agent "print" your ticket. It's easier and faster for the airline to "endorse" your reservation to another carrier if it's paper.
Discount airline tickets can be purchased through travel agents and numerous web sites which compare rates often from several sources like SaveOnAirfares.com. In addition most airline have official web sites which sometimes offer special
rates for tickets from that particular airline. Although airline ticket prices tend to vary little, checking several sources is usually the best way to find the best price. Travel agents and independent web sites often add a small fee to airline tickets
because of the very small commissions offered by airlines.
If you are using frequent flyer miles to get to a vacation destination it is best to book your flights first, particularly if you are traveling to a popular destination like Hawaii or Orlando. You will find it easier to book your hotel room around your flight/travel plans than vice versa. Plan as far in advance as possible. Most airlines will let you book 10 months in advance.
Overseas airports often require the payment of a departure tax to leave. This fee cannot be paid in advance, and is not part of your ticket. The fees are accepted in local currency. Ask your hotel when checking out (or your travel agent in advance) what the departure tax is, then make sure to have adequate local money left.
Request seat assignments, special meals and any other special services you require with your first call to the airline to book a reservation. If they cannot assign seats at that time, ask if you can 'request' an aisle or window seat instead. Your chances of getting what you want are greater if you submit a request before you get to the airport. Other special requests often MUST be made in advance and you may not be told this by the ticketing agent, so ask about these, too, when first booking your flights.
Deals on travel come in many forms. If your vacation or trip includes the purchase of round trip airline tickets and staying at one hotel, then purchasing a air and hotel package (also know as travel or vacation package) can be a great way to great to save some money. It can getting a deal on a hotel reservation and airline tickets easier. Click on --> http://saveontravelpackages.com to research and possibly purchase a airline ticket and hotel package.
One of the best ways to beat the airlines and their fares is to have a handle on geography. In an area with one major air carrier, you may have such little competition that "deals" are nonexistent. The way to save money is to be creative. Smaller airports and small airlines in a market have to fight for revenue. They can only do this by volume, since a higher fare will blow off any passengers. If you can drive an hour or so, you can sometimes cut a ticket in half. Examples: want New Orleans? Check Baton Rouge, too. Want Detroit? Check Windsor, Toledo and Lansing. Want New York City? Check MacArthur on Long Island. Boston?-Providence. DC?-Baltimore. Los Angeles?- Orange County, Long Beach, Ontario and Burbank..throw in San Diego for good measure. Phoenix too expensive? Tucson or Flagstaff. There are dozens of examples- ask a good travel agent to help.
Some airlines like Southwest, simply do not assign seats. Others can do so about 10 1/2 months before the flight. Most major US airlines have the capability to assign seats between 60 days and 6 months out. *Tour companies and cruises do not automatically assign seats for you-request that your travel agent does so when s/he can. *Frequent flyers who have acquired beaucoup miles have the most preferred aisle and front of the plane seats set aside by the airlines for their use. That's why you can't get a front seat, even if you're the first one buying a ticket! *The airlines only pre-assign about 70% of any plane. This is in order to give them control at the gate for special care passengers, like children, the handicapped, or persons with other needs. The process of "weights and balance" also requires the plane to be loaded roughly equally with passengers for a smooth flight. *In a plane with a 3-and-3 configuration, ask your travel agent to get you and your companion the window (center empty) and the aisle on one side. This would leave an empty seat for stashing in-flight magazines, etc., and the tray in the middle can be used for your drinks, giving you more lap space. The airlines will not usually assign this kind of set up. If the plane becomes completely full, the stranger assigned to the center will be happy to trade with either of you!