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50 Airfare Booking Engines
monique
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Moderator’s note, 2 march 2006: This has been a very popular thread. Originally posted April 2002, I weeded out the bumps about a year ago. Some links have expired, some companies no longer exist, and some routes have changed. I will attempt to update the thread, with my comments in red. – Don

I was browsing frommers.com, and I came upon this list. Similar lists have recently been posted, but I like how this one’s organized. It came from this article: http://www.frommers…. outdated link, goes to Frommers sitemap which is still a good resource

The Biggies
(airfare Web sites that primarily list the millions of published fares— and some special "Web fares&quotWink
American Express (Internet Travel Network) www.itn.net Amex acquired ITN; link still works
Expedia www.expedia.com
Orbitz www.orbitz.com
Travelocity www.travelocity.com
Trip.com www.trip.com acquired by Cheaptickets; link still works

The Slashers aka "airfare consolidators"
(airfare Web sites that primarily list secretly discounted fares)
Air Outlet Center www.airoutlet.com X
Cheap Seats cheapseatstravel.com
Cheap Tickets www.cheaptickets.com
Council Travel www.counciltravel.co…
LastMinuteTravel www.lastminutetravel…
LowAirfare.com www.lowairfare.com
Lowestfare.com www.lowestfare.com
OneTravel.com www.onetravel.com
STA Travel www.statravel.com student tickets

The Copiers aka "aggregators"
(airfare Web sites that claim to analyze the other airfare Web sites, and thus identify the lowest fare)
FareChase www.farechase.com
Qixo www.qixo.com
SideStep www.sidestep.com
Mobissimo www.mobissimo.com
Kayak www.kayak.com
BookingBuddy www.bookingbuddy.com
Cheap Ticket Links www.cheapticketlinks…
BootsnAll Airfare http://airfare.boots…

The Upstarts these are all US domestic airlines only
(airfare Web sites of the cut-rate carriers claiming lower prices to begin with)
AirTran Airways www.airtran.com
America West Airlines www.americawest.com merged with USAirways in 2005
ATA (American Trans Air) www.ata.com
belly-up 2008
Frontier Airlines www.flyfrontier.com
JetBlue Airways www.jetblue.com
Midwest Express Airlines www.midwestexpress.c… aka www.midwestairlines….
National Airlines www.nationalairlines… belly-up 2002
Southwest Airlines www.southwest.com
Sun Country Airlines www.suncountry.com
Vanguard Airlines www.flyvanguard.com X – belly-up July 2002

The Flexibles
(airfare Web sites on which relaxed fliers commit to an ultrabargain
price on carriers and flight times that are not initially disclosed)
Hotwire www.hotwire.com
Priceline www.priceline.com

The Majors
(airfare Web sites of the standard carriers, sometimes posting Web-only bargains)
Air Canada www.aircanada.ca (“Websavers”)
Alaska Airlines www.alaskaair.com (“Promotions”) Alaska Deals
American Airlines www.aa.com (“Specials”)
Continental Airlines www.continental.com(“Specials”)
Delta Air Lines www.delta.com (“Special Offers”)
Hawaiian Airlines www.hawaiianair.com(“SpecialOffers”) Hawaiian Deals
Northwest Airlines www.nwa.com (“Deals”)
United Air Lines www.ual.com (“Special Deals”)
US Airways www.usairways.com (“Promotions”)

The Globetrotters
(heavily used Web sites for overseas flights, many of them discounted)
Airfare Planet www.airfareplanet.co…
AirTreks.com www.airtreks.com
easyJet.com www.easyjet.com Europe only
ebookers.com www.ebookers.com
EuropeByAir www.europebyair.com $99+tax flight passes; often cheaper if booked direct with airline, some flight passes now $129

Flights.com (TISS) www.flights.com
Go www.go-fly.com belly-up 2003
GlobalFare www.globalfare.com
site under construction?!
Icelandair www.icelandair.com
RyanAir www.ryanair.com Europe-only
TravelSelect www.travelselect.com
Virgin Blue www.virginblue.com.a… Australia only
New:www.kelkoo.com

I am leaving from Boston and traveling for 15 days
Paris, Pontorson, Amboise, Beaune, Gimmelwald
Requesting help with Transport, Budget, Itinerary
happy1
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Wow, you’ve done your good deed for the day!

I think the list should also include www.economytravel.co…. I just bought my ticket through them – it was definitely the best deal I had seen for my itinerary.

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Addition:

www.flightcenter.com

They advertise the lowest int’l airfares guaranteed and will try to beat any official quoted price. I have not used them yet, but plan to for my Oz ticket. Only downfall is that you really need to call them to get a quote or book.

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I think the ryanair, go-fly and easyjet suggestions are all good ones,
I used those to great advantage. I would suggest another:
http://www.skyauctio…
I bought six tickets for six persons through them at auction.
They worked diligently with me to gather and then disperse all six,
leaving from different cities at different times with destinations
that overlapped sometimes. We were all completely happy with the
result, and demonstrably saved more than US$1,000 in ticket fares.

But you have to be willing to play the auction format – which is
pretty peculiar.

Elliott Moore

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Just thought I would add a few sites those other Canadians who are looking around. For some of the bigger sites listed above just changing the .com to .ca will give you a Canadian version of the same site. Expedia and Travelocity are both like this.

Expedia www.expedia.ca
Travelocity www.travelocity.ca
Student Universe www.studentuniverse….
Flight Centre www.flightcentre.ca
Farebase www.farebase.net
Exit.ca www.exitravel.com
Herman Travel www.herman.on.ca – this one is more geared to travel packages, but still cheap pricing.

Hope this helps a bit.

I am leaving from Fredericton and traveling for 19 days
Paris, Nantes, Bordeaux, Bilbao, Santander, Oviedo, León, Vigo, Valladolid, Burgos
I am leaving from Fredericton with $2000 for 19 days
Barcelona, Palma de Mallorca, Valencia, Gibraltar, Tangier, Rabat, Casablanca, Marrakech, Fes, Meknes, Málaga, Madrid, Barcelona
Requesting help with Transport, Itinerary, Sights
I am traveling for 18 days
London, Bath, Bristol, London, Edinburgh, Inverness, London
Requesting help with Transport, Hostels, Itinerary, Nightlife, Food, Sights
Novice
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One more to add to the list….

http://www.tiss.com

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Here is one, that searches several of the discount airlines in europe:

http://www.applefares.com bought by Cheapflights.co.uk to launch "Cheapseeker", however all I can find now is departures from UK and Ireland.

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<BLOCKQUOTE id=quote<font size=1 face=‘Verdana,Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif’ id=quote>quote:<hr height=1 noshade id=quote>
Any search engines from for flights specifically from the UK to the US?
<hr height=1 noshade id=quote></BLOCKQUOTE id=quote></font id=quote><font face=‘Verdana,Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif’ size=2 id=quote>
try these:
www.lastminute.com
www.cheapflights.com
www.travelselect.com

monique
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Wow, I can’t believe this thread has surfaced so many times! I found a similar article today at http://www.msnbc.com… outdated link
with a few different ideas:

TRANSATLANTIC AIR FARES

Travac Tours & Charters, Inc. (800/872-8800)
Long-established and highly respected source of discounted tickets to major European cities. Its best values are for the transatlantic high season (April through October). Web: www.thetravelsite.co… not the Travac we used to know and love; looks like someone just bought the name

Council Travel (800/226-8624)
Owned by its former rival, STA Travel, its cut-rate airfares are no longer confined to students (but some still are student-only). Web: www.counciltravel.co… bought by STA in 2003; link still works or www.statravel.com

DER Travel Services (800/717-4247 airfares; 800/782-2424 other travel products)
The German railway system owns this long-established firm that claims to provide discounts of 20% to 35% on advance-purchase European airfares and also offers a full range of other discounted travel services. Web: www.dertravel.com agents only

New Frontiers USA (800/366-6387)
The U.S. division of France’s largest travel company allegedly beats published air prices to Europe by 20% to 30%, operates its own scheduled charter service to France (Corsair), and sells competitively priced fly-drive and air-hotel packages. Web: www.newfrontiers.com no longer active in USA; www.airtahitinui.com took over former Corsair route from LAX to PAR

STA Travel Inc. (800/777-0112)
Now that it owns Council Travel, STA is the major student travel firm with tickets to Europe (25% to 30% off published fares, it claims) but offers domestic savings as well. Cheap backpacker-friendly hotels and hostels worldwide are another specialty. Web: www.statravel.com

Destination Europe: (800/FLY-EUROPE)
Today, Destination Europe accounts for roughly 28,000 air tickets annually, exclusively between the U.S. and Europe. In addition to air tickets, the company also offers discounted rates on car rentals and more than 2,000 European hotels. Web: www.1800flyeurope.co…

Ireland/UK Consolidated (800/577-2900)
Specializing in airfares to Ireland and the UK, the company claims to save travelers from 20 to 50 percent off published prices. Ireland/UK Consolidated has been operating for over 30 years. Web: www.ukair.com

Sophisticated Travelers (800/801-1055)
Provides some of the best prices on Swiss Airlines to destinations in all major cities in Europe leaving from the major US gateways. Annually, Sophisticated Travelers sells around 3,500 tickets. Web: www.s-traveler.com

AIRFARES TO WORLDWIDE DESTINATIONS

Picasso Travel (212/244-5454)
Its main discount market is to Tel Aviv, but it also claims to provide cut-rate fares to all of Europe, Latin America, Africa, and some (but only some) Asia. Web: www.picassotravel.ne… agents only

1Travel.com (800/929-2523)
A full-service Internet discounter of everything from airfares (domestic and international) and packages to hotel rooms and cruises. Features an e-mail service for last-minute values and an airfare search engine that compares consolidator and published fares. Web: www.1travel.com

American Passenger Consolidators (212/972-1558 or 800/526-2447, travel agents only)
A pioneering consolidator, dealing heavily in discounted fares to Europe. Owned by airline veteran Michael Shamilzadeh, whose daughter’s company “Travel With Naomi” (212/972-2096) deals directly with the public for many of the same flights. Web: www.apc-consolidator…

Economy Travel (888/222-2110)
Specializes in Europe (mainly London, Paris, Rome) and some destinations in Africa and South America. It lists both consolidator and published fares alongside each other, enabling the public to compare. Web: www.economytravel.co…

Edited by – monique on Jan 13 2003 07:53:28

I am leaving from Boston and traveling for 15 days
Paris, Pontorson, Amboise, Beaune, Gimmelwald
Requesting help with Transport, Budget, Itinerary
jenn22
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I always find the cheapest tickets at www.bestfares.com

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Here’s a great website that no one has mentioned:

http://www.rockbotto…

This is where I found the best deal on my open-jawed flight from LAX-Tel Aviv and London Heathrow-LAX. The outgoing flight to Tel Aviv has two connections, but the return flight is nonstop. Got the tickets for $700 plus taxes and fees. StaTravel had a slightly lower cost on my flight days (May 7, June 30) but they had more connections. Flight Centre offered to beat the price, but like StaTravel they too had more connections. After two months traveling the Middle East and Europe I’m going to want a nonstop flight home, and that’s what this site gave me. Good airlines too — Austrian Airlines & United.

Edited by – existenz on Apr 22 2003 18:29:25

LBG53
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Has anyone used www.airtreks.com I saw it listed but wanted to hear about actual experience with them.

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Search Engine to looking for Low Cost Airline Tickets in Europe

I want to recommend the followed URL to find CHEAPEST FLIGHT in
Europe: http://www.gooflight….

This takes the origin and the destination and
matches all the possible routes that the low fare airlines offer. It work with 9 low cost airlines in Europe(easyjet,ryanair,bmibaby,mytravelite,germanwings, basiqair,
virgin-express, etc…), 18 countries: UK, Ireland, Spain, Italy, France,Germany, etc., 140 cities; more than 4300 low fare flights.

This engine has unique features:

* it can join two low cost routes for you. As a result, you always have the
cheapest option to fly.

* when you want to book you don’t have to enter the data (origin, destination,
date) again in the airline web pages. Instead of this, we can show you the
airline web pages with the data ready for book.

* Its database collects flights information from the most important low cost
airlines in Europe. It is updated twice a month.

* It offer independant information about the positioning of airfares and do not
sell anything. We always show you the lowest discount airfare.

Enjoy It !

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HINT ON ECONOMYTRAVEL.COM: When I searched Sep-Dec travel, the flights were $150 cheaper if I checked dates that depart/arrived on same DAY of the week (Mon-Mon).

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http://www.openjet.com isnt bad for intra-European flights either

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I found another one that isn’t on here.

http://www.airtravel…

I found airfares here way cheaper than travelocity, expedia, onetravel, etc. I booked with them last night for hundreds cheaper and then immediately went to BA’s website to see if my itinerary was in their system and it was!

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itasoftware

Though I know I read about this site here… I was searching for this website and couldn’t find it… not even on this thread… so here it is— http://www.itasoftwa…

quote:ITA Software’s QPX system is the world’s leading airfare pricing and shopping system.

QPX has been proven by some of the most demanding customers in the industry, including Orbitz, Air Canada, Alaska Airlines, Alitalia, America West Airlines, Continental Airlines, Galileo, Cheap Tickets, Accovia, NLG and others.

QPX provides all of the information required to book and ticket any itinerary directly in a carrier’s inventory system or in a CRS, delivering:
Substantial cost reductions – book and ticket any itinerary for a fraction of a dollar per ticket.
Strong revenue growth – provide significantly more and better quality information, increasing sales conversions and revenue growth.

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Good summary article and list:

http://www.reidsguid…

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Nice list! I would add http://www.faremax.com. I used them recently to buy consolidated airline tickets to Rome and they were $500(!!!) less than any other.

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Thanks everyone for all of the bumps and tops on this thread over the years. I wish the forum had stickies, but it doesn’t, so topping has been next-best thing.

I have weeded out all of the bumps and tops to reduce the thread length from it’s previous 3 pages down to 1 page. This to encourage new users to read through and not be put off by length of the thread.

Don
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This thread has endured well through some fairly majour changes in commercial aviation. Council Travel, National Airlines, and Vanguard Airlines no longer exist. Council was bought by STA Travel. National and Vanguard went belly-up.

I’m really liking www.bookingbuddy.com currently. One input of data and you can choose multiple search sources—including aggregators.

www.discountairfares… for an up-to-date list and links of all 61 (yes, 61) of Europe’s current low-fare airlines.

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I have purchased my last few tickets to Central America through www.discountair.com and although I do not find all of the fares that some of the other sites have they seem to find the lowest international airfares when I call them and give them some of the competitive rates that I have found somewhere.

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I’m new. Are the sites mentioned initially still the best? Are there new ones? I was told "canadian affair" and "zoom" and "wiz" might be my best choices and I was pretty impressed with them. Should I keep searching?
I have scoped out Toronto to London return, plus connections to and from london from Ljubljana and Prague for $722CND, tax included, in July.
links added: www.canadian-affair….
www.flyzoom.ca
www.wizzair.com
www.whichbudget.com comprehensive European-based low-cost airlines search/routes/links to airlines

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It’s unlikely to get cheaper than that. There could always be some unknown sale, but that’s a good rate for summer.

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WOW! I created this thread 4 years ago today!! And how amazing that I would happen to search for it today. Thanks for updating it, Don. I knew a few years ago it was in need of an overhaul! I’m glad it’s been so popular over the years.

I am leaving from Boston and traveling for 15 days
Paris, Pontorson, Amboise, Beaune, Gimmelwald
Requesting help with Transport, Budget, Itinerary
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I know what its like looking for deals on airfare. I just returned from a trip to Tokyo and can tell you that researching for the cheapest airfare was a pain. I spent about three weeks reviewing the online booking services, and was disappointed by almost all of them. I’m happy to report that I found a really good deal with a company named cfares. I literally saved hundreds of dollars with them and have incessantly recommended them to all my friends and family. Check them out: http://www.cfares.co… and http://www.cfares.co…

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A couple new ones:

www.dohop.com
www.pricegrabber.com…

— [update 23Aug2008: Pricegrabber no longer does airfare shopping]

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Excellant and Thank you !!!!!

Considering that all prices now seem very unreasonable in comparison to the last few years, and the fact that I don’t have to travel with everyone else, I am now taking my time and do my research to find the best vacation possible for this year.

Now that brings an interesting point for everyone and specially for Don, Monique, Sailor, CIL and some of the other guys I have seen in years.

If ITAsoftware is being used by a lot of the Airfare search engines, is it possible to eliminate some of the carries and vendors from the list.

Not only will it more effective but also reduces the time and energy.

I am leaving from US and traveling for 11 days
London, Brussels, Basel, Paris, London
Requesting help with Transport, Itinerary, Sights
Don
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Yes, I don’t check all of them. I try ITA, then Booking Buddy, then consolidators, then rely on knowledge of little-known airlines or creative routing. ITA month-long search with all airports I could use strung together with semicolon and no spaces like this CPH;MMA;BLL;GOT;OSL to NYC;WAS;BOS;CHI;ATLHL for example. I then note pricing trends from ITA—is it $100 cheaper if I could go 1 day earlier or come back a day later, for example. Once I’ve got dates and airports narrowed down, then I run it through Bookingbuddy.com, but even there I focus on only 4-5 sources, usually Kayak, Sidestep, Mobissimo, and the airline. I compare the narrowed-down itin with consolidators and lesser-known airlines (Kuwait Air between JFK and LHR, for example).

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Booked my ticket from London to Tokyo through this yesterday – going in 6 weeks!
http://www.travelsupermarket.com/travelmerge/travelsearch.aspx?package=4 found it useful

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Don,
Can you please help in the search techniques again. Are you sure you could insert a colon and then…..
Could I use this for other search engines….

I am leaving from US and traveling for 11 days
London, Brussels, Basel, Paris, London
Requesting help with Transport, Itinerary, Sights
Don
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It’s a semicolon ; no spaces. Only works with ITA afaik.

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www.farecompare.com

Seems really good as they catch the fares before it is broadcasted, however most of the seats are sold out. Somehow I feel that one has to buy the tickets in matter of an hour or so to really get a seat or a bargain.

I have written to them to find out exactly how it can make my search beneficial.

I wonder if anyone has any comments.

I am leaving from US and traveling for 11 days
London, Brussels, Basel, Paris, London
Requesting help with Transport, Itinerary, Sights
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Hi, I have found a really good search engine. It searches houndreds of airlines sites as well as travel angencies sites. I think all the links metnioned above are supported by this searcher. I found there my London – buenos aires flight really fast for best price. After you click for the found flight you are automatically redirected to the booking site. Try: www.momondo.com
Enjoy!

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(Thanks MiM for restoring this thread!)

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Very useful !!!
Up again !!!

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You guys should try BestFlights http://www.bestfligh…, it has amazing prices. The company’s search engine has recently been redone. It allows you to search for flights from anywhere to anywhere in the world, then book your selected flights in real time.

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nice i like those sites

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bump

I tried to pin it to top of cheap flights forum, but it just repeated itself over and over, replacing the other threads.

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bump — up to the top

jon95
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I came across a couple of other sites that Canadians might find useful (while looking for flights to Europe):

  • wisetravelsearch.ca http://wisetravelsea… – this is kind of like booking buddy, but geared to the Canadian market (i.e. shows more prices in CAD). There is also an American version of this page… replace .ca with .com Smile
  • FlightNetwork.com http://www.flightnet… – usually I check Expedia.ca and Travelocity.ca, but FlightNetwork sometimes beats the two biggies in pricing (sometimes by a lot). Not sure if they have a US site.

I would also recommend Skyscanner (http://www.skyscanne…) and Kayak (http://www.kayak.com). The first isn’t so great for flights within Canada, but it’s pretty amazing for flights within Europe; Kayak is also good for flights within Europe, and if you register you can display prices in CAD.

I am leaving from Edmonton, Canada with $5000 for 14 days
Rome, Assisi, Florence
BennyM
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Air travelers who are looking forward to getting away in the summer of 2007 can expect to encounter a cheaper airline tickets. Travel fares are beginning to go down, although you still may need payday loans to get any baggage checked and a Coke on the plane. However, consumers probably shouldn’t grow accustomed to the idea – because it is a stunt. The idea on part of the airlines is to entice people back into seats and onto flights, not so much to make an adjustment that will be a permanent move to make airlines more competitive. However, those people needing a flight in the next couple of months will doubtless benefit from the current cheap airline tickets.

[moderator note: spam link removed]

Ellen27jg
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this topic – what a great idea! Thanks a lot!

Emma114
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jetradar.com is the only place I go to search flights now, after consistently finding them to find the best deals. They don’t ‘promote’ any particular airline, but are totally transparent, plus they include the extra fees and taxes that you know you have to pay but many other ‘comparison’ sites leave off. This is helpful, as you can make a fair assessment of which is the best price.

sammohanty
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If the readers vouch for the above site, can the moderator please include this on the Master List? and keep running the thread on the top of the forum.

I am leaving from US and traveling for 11 days
London, Brussels, Basel, Paris, London
Requesting help with Transport, Itinerary, Sights
Don
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I’ve tried jetradar on 6-8 routes over the last couple weeks. It’s not bad, but it’s never been cheapest vs. other sources that I use.

sammohanty
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I have been trying to check it since yesterday and do not really see anything extraordinary. is this reliable?

I am leaving from US and traveling for 11 days
London, Brussels, Basel, Paris, London
Requesting help with Transport, Itinerary, Sights
steefen
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Your information is really goods. I like this.

james5
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They try to provided the best airfare and beat the any official quoted price.