Advice on choosing a flight
- Prices for the same flight vary so don’t just check the airline’s own site – try other sites such as Skyscanner, Expedia, Trivago, ebookers, Kayak etc
- If you are a member of an airline loyalty programme check out whether it is worth spending your hard earned miles or points rather than paying cash. Remember that only a few seats are available on any one flight and some of them to popular destinations are taken as soon as they become available 355 days before the date of the flight.
- Be wary about buying flights from an Online Travel Agent (OTA). Some of them have dodgy reputations especially if things go wrong and you need a refund or to make changes.
- Look for where the seller is based and see if they are charging in sterling or a foreign currency in which case work out whether it is a good rate and whether there are any bank charges.
- If the seller is based abroad your chances of getting them to put things right are worse than if they are based in the UK
- Check to see if the flight is protected by the ATOL scheme
- It is always wise to purchase travel insurance which may protect you in case of cancellations, delays, lost or stolen items and medical emergencies. Always check the terms and conditions for the amount of coverage you get – particularly in the case of Covid 19.
- If you pay the airline direct with a credit card, not a debit card, you will get protection under s.75 of the Consumer Credit Act 1974 which makes your credit card company equally liable as the airline if things go wrong
- If you are intending travelling with young children find out what is the youngest age the airline will take them and what the charge will be. Will you have to pay for a seat for them?
- Will the airline take you if you are pregnant?
- Check out the add-ons e.g. for luggage or early boarding or seat reservations or refreshments. These costs can add up even though the headline price is quite low.
- Is the ticket flexible, permitting changes or refunds or is it non-refundable and non-changeable? Can the ticket be changed for a fee?
- Investigate the Covid 19 rules that apply to your destination
- Investigate whether you need a visa for the destination you are travelling to and be aware that many countries require you to have a passport with at least six months validity remaining.
- Remember not to pack liquids or sharp implements in your carry on luggage.
- Pay attention to the airline’s rules on when you must present yourself for check-in. Failure to get to the airport on time may result in you being denied boarding.
Your Flightpath to the Holiday of your Dreams
- Where can I go?
- What is the weather like?
- Do I need a visa?
- Do I need a vaccination?
- Do I need travel insurance?
- What is a GHIC?
- Is it safe to go there?
- Who will take me there? Trains and boats and planes.
Online Travel Agents
- How do I get to the airport?
- Where will I park my car?
- Where do I stay?
- How will I pay for it?
- What about foreign currency and fee free currency cards?
- Will I have to pay phone charges?
- What luggage will I need?
- What shall I wear when I get there?
- Sunburn, Sickness, Diarrhoea? How do you protect yourself?
- What do I need to see?
- How do I get about once I’m there?
- What excursions should I take?
- How can I get tickets for events?
- What about a camera?
- What can I read on holiday?
- Where do I eat?
- Help! I need to get home
- How do I complain
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