QANTAS and United Playing Funny Buggers on Trips on Aussie-USA trips | Australian Frequent Flyer
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QANTAS and United Playing Funny Buggers on Trips on Aussie-USA trips

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inpd

Member
Joined
Oct 29, 2005
Messages
103
Hi,

This morning I witnessed the most amazing pricing situation
I care to remember.

LAX-MEL is with both United and Qantas priced at $1206 for May.
Has not changed for the last 2 months.

Then at around 10:10 EST United drop the JFK-MEL fare to $1100 (said fare
above stays the same even though this fare is really JFK-LAX-MEL and the
JFK-LAX is just a domestic add-on).

At around 10:30 EST Qantas drop their JFK-MEL fare to $1100. None of this
is advertised as a Red saver or whatever Qantas called it.

Then at around 10:40 United drop their fares connecting to LAX-MEL
from all over the east coast to $1100 but LAX-MEL is still $1206.
I try to book and United's web
site won't let me. So I check Expedia they have the same fare.
Luckily I booked into ALB-LAX-MEL for this price.
Orbitz owned by the airlines does not have the fare.

Then at 11:00 EST its all over and the fare JFK-MEL and ALB-LAX-MEL
is back to $1500 from all sites (Expedia, Orbitz and United, Qantas)
which is right since ALB-LAX is about $300. My good luck
saved me $1200 (two adults and a kid).

Airline pricing is really screwed up IMHO.

What could trigger such a situation where the cost of LAX-MEL
is $100 more than ALB-LAX-MEL (ALB is in upstate New York and
you go ALB-OHARE-LAX).
 

Kiwi Flyer

Senior Member
Joined
Sep 24, 2004
Messages
5,453
There has been some discussion today on Flyer Talk about the lower fare US east coast to Australia on United. Seems there was a mistake which was then later fixed.

Good for you that you managed to take advantage of it.

As for fares being cheaper from further away - that is very common in airline pricing.
 

inpd

Member
Joined
Oct 29, 2005
Messages
103
Kiwi Flyer said:
As for fares being cheaper from further away - that is very common in airline pricing.
It's not that simple.

What I was getting at was:

a) LAX-MEL which is UA839/UA840 was $1206
b) ALB-LAX-MEL which is UA5050-UA8xxx-UA839/UA840-UA8xxx-UA5051
which was $1100

So its not just further away the cheaper flights are a superset of the
expensive flights.
 

Kiwi Flyer

Senior Member
Joined
Sep 24, 2004
Messages
5,453
inpd said:
It's not that simple.

What I was getting at was:

a) LAX-MEL which is UA839/UA840 was $1206
b) ALB-LAX-MEL which is UA5050-UA8xxx-UA839/UA840-UA8xxx-UA5051
which was $1100

So its not just further away the cheaper flights are a superset of the
expensive flights.
Sorry for not being clear, but that situation is common.
 

oz_mark

AFF Supporter
Joined
Jun 30, 2002
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Kiwi Flyer said:
Sorry for not being clear, but that situation is common.
Surprisingly common in my experience. I have seen it many times. Distance traveeled is but only one factor in setting a price.
 

inpd

Member
Joined
Oct 29, 2005
Messages
103
oz_mark said:
Surprisingly common in my experience. I have seen it many times. Distance traveeled is but only one factor in setting a price.
Read my second post, its not just flyer further, the further trip includes
the shorter trip airplane rides. I've never seen this before and in flyertalk they
are saying it was a pricing error that was quickly fixed.
 

Kiwi Flyer

Senior Member
Joined
Sep 24, 2004
Messages
5,453
inpd said:
Read my second post, its not just flyer further, the further trip includes
the shorter trip airplane rides. I've never seen this before and in flyertalk they
are saying it was a pricing error that was quickly fixed.
okay sounds like you want an example rather than taking my word for it

NZ to singapore can be more expensive than NZ to europe even though you take the same flight to/from singapore
 

serfty

Moderator
Joined
Nov 16, 2004
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More examples, on AA coach class travel:

HNL-LAX direct in June costs from USD570 for a driect flight; go via LAS and it drops to USD340.

Another?

HNL-DFW direct is USD1170, go via LAX and AUS it drops to USD770, via PHX and it's down to USD330! :shock:
 

NM

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The same thing often happens ex Europe, especially with airlines like BA. Consider the cost of a BA flight LHR-SYD. Then compare with AMS-LHR-SYD and you will often find the second is considerably cheaper, especially for fares like WT+. And in that example, the LHR-SYD portion is on the same flights for both example.

Another is the classic exampel of F class travel from TIP. Travel may be something like TIP-LHR-SYD and it will be about half the fare of LHR-SYD.

Airfares do not always reflect the cost of delivering the service. They reflect the price the airline believes they can find sufficient passengers to pay. Its a real black art (some may say its a science) that involves both yeild management (selling maximum number of seat on the aircraft) and revenue management (getting enough revenue to make it viable).

Sounds like you scored a great deal by actively looking for fares at the right time and acting quickly when you found a good deal. Congratulations and enjoy your trip in the knowledge that you maximised your personal benefits through the airlines revenue and yield management systems.
 

inpd

Member
Joined
Oct 29, 2005
Messages
103
Kiwi Flyer said:
okay sounds like you want an example rather than taking my word for it

NZ to singapore can be more expensive than NZ to europe even though you take the same flight to/from singapore
Oh I took your word I just found it very tough to believe since I've
never seen it before and I've travelled a lot over the last 15 years.
 

Kiwi Flyer

Senior Member
Joined
Sep 24, 2004
Messages
5,453
inpd said:
Oh I took your word I just found it very tough to believe since I've
never seen it before and I've travelled a lot over the last 15 years.
Until I found FT (and AFF) I thought I knew a lot about travel. Boy was I wrong about how much more there was to learn. :D
 

drron

AFF Supporter
Joined
Jul 4, 2002
Messages
19,304
It has been happening for a long time.In september 2005 we were travelling with the grandkids and flying AA from New York to Orlando.Flying via Miami was approx $50 cheaper but that flight was cheaper than the fare on the same plane flying just JFK-MIA.So the further you went the cheaper the flight.
The only thing is that you have to be thankful you were looking when you did.Congratulations.
 

inpd

Member
Joined
Oct 29, 2005
Messages
103
A few people posted getting deals on United from the east coast to Australia
as low at $880 dollars. So I guess United's product *is* valued less than
Qantas's but they don't actively advertise it.
 
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