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Buying Airline Tickets?

post #1 of 22
Thread Starter 
Someone help me here!

I need to fly from one of the following places:
Minneapolis/St Paul, MN - Rochester, MN - Sioux Falls, SD

To:
Spokane, WA

I'm fairly flexible on the time(I can't do May 17/18th weekend), but I absolutely must have cheap tickets(I'd like them to be $200/each so I can afford them ). Fly out one day, fly back the next. 2 adults. Must be an airline that flies pets in the plane with you. Leaning towards a weekend, cuz looks like tickets are cheaper then.

I've found the perfect date & everything, but I'd arrive at 10:30PM & have to leave at 7:10AM.

Suggestions? Guidance? Never bought airline tickets before.
Is there anything I should avoid?
What about hidden fees, are there any?
How much wood would a wood chuck chuck if a wood chuck could chuck wood? (can ya tell this is making my head spin? )

Thanks!
post #2 of 22
try using expedia... and aim for Msp/st.paul i just moved out of MN and thats the airport i always used.

expedia will gather a bunch of airlines prices all at once.

Edit: also most airlines do not let pets fly in the plane with you, cats, sometimes... but you have to pay for another seat, which i think would be your third. Northwest flys pets, but it gets pricey.

If youd like you can PM me and i can help, i flew out of MSP alot
post #3 of 22
I can't help you with the airlines, but when a woodchuck digs a burrow, he moves something on the order of 700 pounds of dirt in just a day or two -- so these are hard-working little critters!

Therefore, I suspect that if a woodchuck could chuck wood, he would chuck as much wood as was available to him, and would then go in search of additional wood, in order that he might keep on chuckin'...

post #4 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by save_adopt View Post
try using expedia... and aim for Msp/st.paul i just moved out of MN and thats the airport i always used.

expedia will gather a bunch of airlines prices all at once.

Edit: also most airlines do not let pets fly in the plane with you, cats, sometimes... but you have to pay for another seat, which i think would be your third. Northwest flys pets, but it gets pricey.

If youd like you can PM me and i can help, i flew out of MSP alot


I flew on Delta with Mario, I DID not have to buy him a seat, the carrier goes under the seat in front of you But there is a fee for having them on the plane which I think is ridiculous, The fee may vary from Airline to Airline.
post #5 of 22
When I've looked before, it seems all of those "cheap ticket" sites are almost the same price as the actual airline sites. If I were you, I'd just shop around. Go to all of the airline sites and just compare. Also, it usually is cheaper to fly Mon - Thurs if you can schedule it that way.
post #6 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by save_adopt View Post
try using expedia... and aim for Msp/st.paul i just moved out of MN and thats the airport i always used.

expedia will gather a bunch of airlines prices all at once.

Edit: also most airlines do not let pets fly in the plane with you, cats, sometimes... but you have to pay for another seat, which i think would be your third. Northwest flys pets, but it gets pricey.

If youd like you can PM me and i can help, i flew out of MSP alot
What I found was that some do allow pets in cabin, up to date on all shots, in pet taxi that will fit under seat (i.e. carry-on)... problem is that there's usually an extra fee...

United does, Alaska I think does... Southwest does not allow pets.

I'm guessing this has to do with our boys going to a new TCS home...

ETA: I've been digging on my own... I'm a weirdo that way... Northwest, through Expedia, has affordable rates to Seattle (and if you pick a Tuesday to Wednesday, I can even drive up there and help the drive part to Spokane)... the flight, with fees is just over 200 (I put in 'flxible dates' and it gave me a variety), but there is a pet fee...
Quote:
Travel within the U.S., and between the U.S., Canada, Mexico and the Caribbean: A one-way, per-airline fee of $80.00 USD/CAD will apply to each kennel transported in the passenger cabin.
Any airline that allows pets in cabin will have a fee of some sort. $80 isn't as bad as some.

BTW, Minneapolis to Spokane is over double the price per ticket... that's why I suggested Seattle...


Amanda
post #7 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Beck4582 View Post
When I've looked before, it seems all of those "cheap ticket" sites are almost the same price as the actual airline sites. If I were you, I'd just shop around. Go to all of the airline sites and just compare. Also, it usually is cheaper to fly Mon - Thurs if you can schedule it that way.
you are right they still cost about the same minus like 4 bucks, but it puts them all together so you dont have to hunt as hard
post #8 of 22
Thread Starter 
Northwest allows them for a fee. I have to find someone to fly with me, as each boy would have to go under a seat. (I've got to seperate them to fly )

And yes, this does have to do with the TCS boys going home.

Does $400-500 sound reasonable for a ticket? Seems to be what I'm seeing cheapest.... Do I have to worry about cheaper tickets being crummy of anything?

For those who've flown with cats in the plane, what was it like taking them through the airport? (I'm not nervous at all )
post #9 of 22
just a few pointers...

dont be sure of one airlines pet policy to be the same for the rest, make sure you CALL and ask all the questions you need to, to the airline you fly.

I assume you are trying to fly soon? Thats why your tickets are so expensive, generally with more time they are about $250 and under, but they get much more expensive with less notice.

I've never walked through the airport with pets but again, call the airline, they should have a seperate number for all those pet questions.
post #10 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by white cat lover View Post
Northwest allows them for a fee. I have to find someone to fly with me, as each boy would have to go under a seat. (I've got to seperate them to fly )

And yes, this does have to do with the TCS boys going home.

Does $400-500 sound reasonable for a ticket? Seems to be what I'm seeing cheapest.... Do I have to worry about cheaper tickets being crummy of anything?

For those who've flown with cats in the plane, what was it like taking them through the airport? (I'm not nervous at all )
I just edited my post... I have a suggestion in there...

Also, I've emailed my friend in your area... she's going to a convention that I'm also attending in a couple weeks... I'm awaiting a reply. We could do a kitty-relay. I'm trying to find out if she's flying or driving and would even be willing to do it. I'm driving down to the convention... don't want to say much more until i hear back.

Amanda
post #11 of 22
My mom just flew Air Tran for a vacation and I was checking out some specs for her before she left on their web site... I noticed the pet policy... their's allows pets in the cabin in airline approved crates that must fit under the seat and must stay there for the flight... basically, you need to call/contact each airline you are considering to find out their pet policy... I've never flown with my animals, but I had just happened to notice that for Air Tran
post #12 of 22
Nat, I pm'd you - read it and give me a call tonite - I'll help you out.
post #13 of 22
Thread Starter 
It's a 4.5 hour drive if I fly into Seattle. Spokane is 30 mins from where I'm going. The less driving the better, as it'll be the following drive times to the possible airports:
Minneapolis/St paul - 3 hours
Siouf Falls, Sd - 2 hours
Rochester, mn - 2 hours

Then it's a 2-3 hour flight.....did I mention I don't travel well?

I'm also looking at non-stop flights....cuz I'm worried I'd chicken out halfway & I don't want to put the boys through the mess of changing planes.
post #14 of 22
Check out www.bestfares.com. Tom Parsons the owner is a frequent guest on Wisconsin Public Radio and his site has some good offers!!
post #15 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by white cat lover View Post
Does $400-500 sound reasonable for a ticket?
Do you have discount airlines over there? Like we have Virgin which charges $59 or less each way. $400-500 sounds like a lot to me.

Good luck getting those boys home

post #16 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by missymotus View Post
Do you have discount airlines over there? Like we have Virgin which charges $59 or less each way. $400-500 sounds like a lot to me.

Good luck getting those boys home

The only problem with discount airlines is that they do not allow pets in cabin... some not even at all... service animals, yes, but not pets.

Amanda
post #17 of 22
Thread Starter 
Most flights I'm finding for flying out one day & back the next seem to be....the arrive at 10:30PM, fly out again at 7:10AM. I want to fly out at like noon, be there mid-afternoon....and then fly back the next day later in the afternoon!
post #18 of 22
I like www.kayak.com. It just searches all the discount places and the airlines, and gives you the cheapest price. Then you can book directly through the airline for those dates/times, or book through the discount sites.
post #19 of 22
bear in mind, things have changed DRASTICALLY since i was a travel agent... but here're my suggestions.
1. call a travel agent. their services used to be free, & they were up on all the latest rule requirements for the lowest possible fares.
2. if their service is no longer free [i know airlines are starting to charge for services that they didn't used to] then check someplace like Expedia, Travelocity, HotWire... that way you can see many different prices/choices.
3. once you've decided on your 'best' option, call the airline directly for prices/requirements for pet in cabin. we used to call that 'pet fee' a pet ticket.
4. in the distant past, the lowest fare/shortest trip was gained by traveling to on a Thursday & back on a Monday. a Saturday night stay was required - otherwise you paid thru the nose. next lowest/shortest would be departing on a Saturday & returning on a Sunday - same Saturday night stay included, but more expensive for traveling on higher occupancy days of the week.
post #20 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by laureen227 View Post
bear in mind, things have changed DRASTICALLY since i was a travel agent... but here're my suggestions.
1. call a travel agent. their services used to be free, & they were up on all the latest rule requirements for the lowest possible fares.
That reminds me...

if you're a AAA member, go to one of their offices... the larger ones have travel agencies inside... and I believe it's free for members...

Amanda
post #21 of 22
I know Minneapolis is one of Northwest's hubs, and they allow pets. Most of the major airlines allow pets, really, usually with fees and a 1-per-person rule. The carrier must fit under the seat in front of you, just like any other carryon.

Since you've never flown before... you have to be flexible with timing. That crappy 10:30 pm/7 am flight is cheap precisely because nobody on earth wants to leave that late or early. If you want your flights to be at 2 pm, you're going to pay extra for that.

Also, airline tickets are the cheapest about a month and a half before the time of your trip. Much before that, and they're still expensive, much closer than that and a lot of them are more expensive again because they know you need that ticket for whatever reason and are likely to pay more for it.

Unless you want to fly stand-by, but I don't think you can if you have pets.
post #22 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by white cat lover View Post
For those who've flown with cats in the plane, what was it like taking them through the airport? (I'm not nervous at all )
I haven't flown with cats, but I just wanted to mention that you might want to have a harness and leash on them, because you will have to take them out of their carriers to go through security. And you can only have soft-sided approved for air travel carriers. Good luck!
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