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Favorite, most reliable booking sites?

Chicago, Illinois
Level Contributor
123 posts
12 reviews
Favorite, most reliable booking sites?

After reading all the ORbitz nightmares, not sure I trust using for the first time traveling out side the us to a South American country. Is there any booking site that is reliable? I know many advise to book directly, but booking directly on Copa shows double the prices....so there are savings to be had.

Stuttgart, Germany
Destination Expert
for Air Travel
Level Contributor
5,949 posts
81 reviews
1. Re: Favorite, most reliable booking sites?

I mostly(95%) book with the airline otherwise i have used expedia without probs. Remember if there are problems then it is much better to deal direct with the airline rather than a middle man who are less than interested.

Exeter, United...
Level Contributor
1,187 posts
45 reviews
2. Re: Favorite, most reliable booking sites?

There are not savings! Do you not get that the third party sites do not have real time abilities to book the flight for you. Instead they advertise the low price which may well have been available at one time to get you to book then when the price is different you pay the extra or the admin fee to get out of the contract.

Seriously, the experienced posters do not recommend you to book direct for no reason.

Chicago, Illinois
Level Contributor
123 posts
12 reviews
3. Re: Favorite, most reliable booking sites?

I have checked Copa airlines over and over, and directly they are 2x as more expensive then any booking site. I am checking into round trip from Chicago to Ft Lauderdale on my points from Southwest and the round trip from Jetblue to Medellin direct. Those prices are the same directly.

Level Contributor
112 posts
15 reviews
4. Re: Favorite, most reliable booking sites?

Travelocity, Expedia and the other biggies have real-time, instant-booking access to flight availability. They are directly connected to the GDS's. I have used both on occasion without issue, although I prefer to book directly with the airline. Some other sites that seem to generate regular complaints on here may be the ones that have to stitch together an itinerary behind the scenes. As always, make yourself aware of both the agency's and airline's contracts, fees and policies and exactly who you need to contact with any issues that may arise. Changes will usually generate fees from both the agency and the airline.

Once you have made your booking, make sure to get the airline confirmation/record locator/reservation ID. This is different from your trip ID issued from the agency to identify your booking with them.

Sydney, Australia
Level Contributor
1,199 posts
119 reviews
5. Re: Favorite, most reliable booking sites?

The airlines direct.

Lake Crystal...
Level Contributor
392 posts
25 reviews
6. Re: Favorite, most reliable booking sites?

"I have checked Copa airlines over and over, and directly they are 2x as more expensive then any booking site"

What specific booking sites are you looking at? Are you absolutely positive that the 'advertised price' you are comparing to the airline's is the actual, total, final price you will be paying?

Pelham Manor, New...
Level Contributor
129 posts
13 reviews
7. Re: Favorite, most reliable booking sites?

I love Kayak.com. They are the best! They use all different combinations of nearby airports and find the cheapest price. They also make $0 off of you, when you're ready to book, it directs to to the airlines site.

Chicago, Illinois
Level Contributor
8,942 posts
88 reviews
8. Re: Favorite, most reliable booking sites?

I don't understand why people say there's no savings from a third party. Probably 80% of the time you can get the best price booking with the airline directly. But several times I've saved hundreds if dollars through third party sites. The savings were significant. I could not find the same fares direct with the airline dedpite numerous searches.

If you have unlimited funds, fine, just check the airlines. But if you have to work with a budget, you should check third party sites, too.

Personally I've used orbitz, Expedia, and Travelocity with no issue. I realize it makes it more difficult to change flights, but for $300 or $500 a person, which is the type of savings I've gotten from these sites, ill take the chance.

Level Contributor
2,479 posts
41 reviews
9. Re: Favorite, most reliable booking sites?

I book direct with the airlines.....first I do look around and even if say its $20 more I will still book direct. As others have said in regards to third party bookers the issues and I find less hassle direct and most airlines I have dealt with will let me book exit seats if I have booked online.

For hotels I have used Expedia, booking.com etc with no issues and probably half the time direct if the hotel is cheapest. For Australia if it's a short interstate trip I sometimes use wotif but not a lot as sometimes cheaper on booking.com or even direct most of the time. However, last time I did a wotif secret hotel and got the hotel I wanted to stay in $70 cheaper per night (luck of the draw).

If you are going to use a third party though definitely come on TA and put it in the search box as most bad reviews will be plenty if it's a bad company. Cheers

South Pole
Level Contributor
15,383 posts
35 reviews
10. Re: Favorite, most reliable booking sites?

I have never seen 3rd part airline booking sites $100s cheaper than the airlines.

and when they have been cheaper there always seems to be routing issues or airline combinations that make me less than enthusiastic.