Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Part 6 – Booking airfare in the discount wasteland

We live in NE Oklahoma. We are about ½ an hour from Tulsa. Tulsa has a nice little airport. It is serviced by most of the big name airlines: AA, Delta, Southwest, you get the picture. But Tulsa doesn’t have one thing that many other airports have: special discounts on airfare. For weeks I compared Tulsa, Oklahoma City, Kansas City, and Dallas/Ft. Worth. I have flown out of 3 of those airports. So I was kind of familiar with them. When I was researching airfare, guess what I found. The best price was at an airport I have never been to. And is 4 hours away. But it was a really good price. Because Tulsa’s prices stink. Even though the paper said it has the best prices in NE OK, NW AR, SW MO. You know why? It’s the ONLY stinking airport big enough to land a bunch of big planes.

So I start looking for airfare. But gas is climbing upward. Buy now or wait? Chance a good price now or chance a fare hike to match gas? Gas is shooting up (at this point we were seeing 2.30’s). Ever one to play it safe, I took the early price. So we bought our tickets in May. And wife said one thing after I paid for them. “Do not look at any more prices.”

I should have listened.

Prices dropped a little. Then leveled out for a while. And then in August the bottom fell out of the prices. There were deals everywhere. Oh well, live and learn. At least we are flying together on the same plane and maybe even in seats that are close to each other.

But here is the kicker. Tulsa still doesn’t have any deals on airfare. We are still breaking even by driving 4 hours away and getting a motel.

Wait, if it is breaking even, then why aren’t we going to the closer airport? You may ask.

I would rather you didn’t.

Post a Comment