We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Travel sites

Illinois
Level Contributor
72 posts
33 reviews
Save Topic
Travel sites

I wish I had found this forum a few weeks ago. i need a ticket for the middle of June for my college age son to go to Lima Peru on a college mission trip. The trip wasn't confirmed until about 2 weeks ago so we are late getting airfare. I have been searching all the sites, but am unsure which sites are most reputable. I have never used an online site before, but the prices are better than what we can get from the airlines. We actually ordered a ticket through airfare.com, but they said the bank card didn't clear soon enough so they cancelled the ticket. However, the funds were not available in our bank account for 5 days (!?), so we couldn't order another ticket. I want to act as soon as I can, but I am very leery about the travel sites online. Any suggestions about where or when to order is appreciated. Thanks.

Garden Bay, Canada
Destination Expert
for Air Travel, Business Travel
Level Contributor
9,797 posts
93 reviews
Save Reply
1. Re: Travel sites

As you have found out, all that glitters is not gold. The assumption that you have even a decent probability of getting tickets at the prices advertised is not a good one.

It takes seconds for the bank card to clear. Keep all the documentation for the airfare.com transaction. You may need it. Don't be sucked in trying to save a couple dollars. Most of the time it isn't real, there may be fees associated with the 3rd parties that make it more expensive, and if you have any trouble on flight day, who would you look after first... somebody who bought a product from you or somebody who bought from a third party, reselling your product?

The big sites like travelocity, expedia, priceline and some of the smaller sites like Vayama are reasonably reliable. There is a whole collection of them that aren't. In the end, the reality is airlines do not give 3rd party sellers discounts of more than about $5 from the prices they offer on their own sites. Just go to the airlines.

UK
Level Contributor
49,560 posts
92 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: Travel sites

Use a credit card. I'll repeat, use a credit card. That stops fraud or error sucking a ton of money out of your bank account rather than " buffering" it ona credit card account where it doesn't immediately affect you. Plus you have more consumer protection.

Yes the prices *shown* look attractive on these sites but so often we read here they don't exist. Many of these sites have small print that says something to the effect of " prices not guaranteed even after you buy until we come back and say its ok". So they sell you the ticket at say $75 cheaper than on the airline then next day come back and say "oh it's gone up by $90 we can either buy that or refund you your $500 you already spent in ,but not for 2 months."

So I would leave these so called cheaper operators alone and only book with reputable companies like those that geomedic above mentions( and personally id only touch the first two), but as he says it's rare you'll find a significant discount with them either. In so many of cases we read about here the low prices you see advertised turn out not be be low or have very significant drawbacks that negate the supposed low price.

If it was me I'd check Expedia and Travelocity just in case but I bet the fares they offer are not significantly lower than the airlines. In which case you know what to do

Edited: 11 May 2012, 10:18
Hanoi, Vietnam
Level Contributor
14,157 posts
63 reviews
Save Reply
3. Re: Travel sites

If you need specific dates, you have no room to argue prices since June is expensive for everyone. If you can pick alternate dates, look at the calendar option of this site:

http://matrix.itasoftware.com for information (tickets can't be purchased at this site)

If I needed this ticket, I would also go to the the following airline sites: LAN, Copa, United and American, and check prices/compare to the third party sites (Expedia, Orbitz, Vayama, Priceline).

As you found out, using a debit card has real problems. If you don't have a cr card, I'm not sure if a loadable, drugstore cr card would work or not?

Good luck!

Edited: 11 May 2012, 13:33
Hanoi, Vietnam
Level Contributor
14,157 posts
63 reviews
Save Reply
4. Re: Travel sites

For you information, a good bank can give their customers a credit card almost immediately.

I'm not saying that Bank of America is one of those "good" banks, but they did give my friend a card in a matter of hours when she went to Vietnam last year.

5. Re: Travel sites

-:- Message from TripAdvisor staff -:-

This post was determined to be inappropriate by the TripAdvisor community and has been removed.

To review the TripAdvisor Forums Posting Guidelines, please follow this link: http://www.tripadvisor.com/pages/forums_posting_guidelines.html

Our staff may also remove posts that do not follow our posting guidelines, and we reserve the right to remove any post for any reason. Thanks for being a part of the TripAdvisor travel community!

Removed on: 25 September 2012, 04:35
6. Re: Travel sites

-:- Message from TripAdvisor staff -:-

This post was determined to be inappropriate by the TripAdvisor community and has been removed.

To review the TripAdvisor Forums Posting Guidelines, please follow this link: http://www.tripadvisor.com/pages/forums_posting_guidelines.html

Our staff may also remove posts that do not follow our posting guidelines, and we reserve the right to remove any post for any reason. Thanks for being a part of the TripAdvisor travel community!

Removed on: 25 September 2012, 04:35
Edited: 25 September 2012, 04:35
Naples, Florida
Level Contributor
377 posts
9 reviews
Save Reply
7. Re: Travel sites

OP--all though too late for you, others may want to read about consolidator tickets at boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php…

or, airfarewatchdog.com/blog/…

8. Re: Travel sites

-:- Message from TripAdvisor staff -:-

This post was determined to be inappropriate by the TripAdvisor community and has been removed.

To review the TripAdvisor Forums Posting Guidelines, please follow this link: http://www.tripadvisor.com/pages/forums_posting_guidelines.html

Our staff may also remove posts that do not follow our posting guidelines, and we reserve the right to remove any post for any reason. Thanks for being a part of the TripAdvisor travel community!

Removed on: 02 November 2012, 08:05
9. Re: Travel sites

-:- Message from TripAdvisor staff -:-

This post was determined to be inappropriate by the TripAdvisor community and has been removed.

To review the TripAdvisor Forums Posting Guidelines, please follow this link: http://www.tripadvisor.com/pages/forums_posting_guidelines.html

Our staff may also remove posts that do not follow our posting guidelines, and we reserve the right to remove any post for any reason. Thanks for being a part of the TripAdvisor travel community!

Removed on: 24 May 2013, 06:35
Milwaukee, Wisconsin
Level Contributor
47 posts
152 reviews
Save Reply
10. Re: Travel sites

All I can say is save yourself headaches and trust the professionals...CALL A TRAVEL AGENT! They can search other avenues at a click of the button and likely SAVE you extra money. It will be the best $25 you spent so far and will offer you the piece of mind that the ticket will actually be purchased rather than stuck in a queue that is common with the online sites.