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My flights were more expensive this year!

Indianapolis...
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My flights were more expensive this year!

I'm out here in the midwest and the first time I travelled to PV was in 2007 (in Sep) and flights were about $500 roundtrip, 1 connection, if I remember correctly. Then again I went to PV in 2010 (Oct) and flights were about $550, roundtrip, 1 connection. Just bought flights for my Oct trip this year and paid $578. I'd been watching flights for several months and they were stuck at over $700, sometimes reaching $1,000 each per person!!! Then, over the 4th of July weekend they dropped to $578, the next day back to $711, the very next day dropped to $578 (I bought them) and then right back up to $711 the next day, where they remain...so far. I've scoured the internet looking for historical trends and expert advice on when to buy and a few websites state 90 days out is the perfect time, which is right where I'm at. I would have waiting a bit longer to see if they would drop had I not had enough miles to cover the cost of almost one full ticket.

So, my question is, does this $578 that I paid seem high? When comparing to past years, it's only gone up slightly, so that makes me feel better. And also, has anyone else noticed the volitility of airfare prices? The bad thing is that I love PV, and would like to visit every year, but I can fly into Cancun for $330 in Oct, and last year flew into Cancun for $330 during Feb, which is high season. I realize Cancun is a shorter flight, but not by half! Anyway, hoping to get some thoughts, ideas and feedback from others. Thanks!

Edmonton
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1. Re: My flights were more expensive this year!

Cancun and PV are about the same from here in Edmonton. But my flights for Jan. coming up are $240 per person cheaper than they were in Jan. last year.

Los Angeles
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2. Re: My flights were more expensive this year!

Flights in general this year are way up from the past several years.

According to some travel sites, the optimal time to purchase is 54 days before the flight. However, that hasn't made much difference for us lately.

As an example, we paid about $220.00 each to fly round trip from LAX to Washington DC in December last year. We are going again at the end of this month and paid $427 each. And I watched the fares for months. Same flights today are $734.00 each.

Since I fly for business as well, I have noticed all my flights except to and from San Francisco have been much higher this year.

Sounds like you did well with the pricing on your flight, have a great trip!!!

San Diego
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3. Re: My flights were more expensive this year!

Agree flights are up all over I think. We paid a great price $150 RT to PVR this August from Tijuana on Volaris. The price then went up to $400 RT (which we could get right from SAN) - however, now there is a great drop and it is $89 one way TIJ-PVR through almost mid-January. I've been watching flights to Hawaii too and they are fluctuating a lot now too.

I read the same article about when to purchase - say best deal is like 60 days from departure.

I like to use a website that will track prices for you and alert you if the price drops below what your "set" price is, such as Kayak. There are others as well that allow you to create a fare alert.

wisconsin
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4. Re: My flights were more expensive this year!

You have to keep watching the price of flights daily. We just booked our Jan flight for $525,.00 per person round trip out of O'Hare. Just a few days before we booked the same flight was near a thousand dollars ea. We booked our Oct flight for $475.00 per person round trip out of O'Hare. Then again, by watching everyday we saw a bargain and jumped on it. Up until a couple years ago the normal price for non stop out of O'Hare was around $350.00. I can even remember not that long ago, snagging a couple of last minute tickets for May at $199.00 ea. With the merger of several airlines you are seeing the increased fares. Even as of today, American Airlines still does not show any non stop flights out of O'Hare. This was always our airlines of choice. The bottom line is no matter what you pay, if you are happy with that price and knowing you're going to PV, all is well! Good luck and enjoy.

Shawnee, Kansas
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for Puerto Vallarta
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5. Re: My flights were more expensive this year!

Last year and into this year I researched this because my cousin was coming from Indianapolis to PV for the first time. He paid $600 from Indianapolis to PV, with one stop to change planes. Prices had been high for months, but not as bad from Indy as some other places, and this appeared to be as good as it was going to get.

He checked a few days after he purchased, and prices had gone up. So, since he was traveling during spring break, and prices have gone up again, I think your price sounds about right.

I'll just add that he could have driven to Chicago and stayed overnight with family there, and hopped a non-stop in the morning for nearly the same price.

Edited: 08 July 2014, 20:52
Denver, Colorado
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6. Re: My flights were more expensive this year!

I think my direct flights from Denver on Frontier this season are about the same as last season if you're just looking at the fare. What has changed are checked bag and carry-on fees. Add those in and I'll be paying $100 or so more this year. I'd fly anyone else but Frontier has non-stop/direct flights and I hate connecting flights even more than I hate Frontier.

San Francisco...
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for Sacramento, Puerto Vallarta
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7. Re: My flights were more expensive this year!

OK, Fred --- that was a laugher. I fly Alaska Airlines to PV regularly from San Francisco (still miss Mexicana) mostly because it's a non-stop and only 3.5 hours. Takes 9 hours from home to PV and back (just getting to and from the airport and waiting), but the flight is easy. SFO isn't bad either. Depends on what works for each of us.

What I've found over the past few years is that if I fly mid-week (making air arrangements before lodging), it's cheaper. I tend to look at Alaska regularly and if I'm "in the mood for a trip" and it's been awhile since I've been there (weeks or months), I book the flight. Got $386 RT on Alaska the end of January for two weeks. Flying mid-week. What a surprise. Time to go to PV. ;=))

It's difficult for people who don't follow certain airlines regularly though. I might be one of the lucky ones who relies on one airline (mostly) and can plan at the last minute, being retired. If someone has just a week of vacation a year or needs to go on a certain day, it's a frustration and the airlines will make the best of that.

"Flexibility" is definitely the key word on all of this --- watching the flights every day and the extra fees, which keep going up (surprise!!). We booked flights today (for an airline I flew last year ---- not to Mexico) where the "baggage fees" went up to $100 from $25 last Fall. Nice airline but that was something that surprised me.

Wish I could help more but it's a matter of "working the system" and knowing when you're ready to book, within your budget, if it's worth it to you.

Good luck.

Calgary, Canada
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8. Re: My flights were more expensive this year!

11MrsB, you should chat with friends in the Dallas/Forth Worth area and ask them about the highway robbery prices they've had to pay for years to fly to PV, and it's barely a 2 hour nonstop from DFW. I consider myself practically blessed compared to them. (-;

I agree with marlySF that it requires research, homework, commitment and above all, a readiness to book the minute you find something that fits in a budget range you have pre-determined. Then once you book, don't look back or second guess. Overall there are less options out of some areas as more airlines consolidate their flight routes and merge their businesses. So far none of those mergers has resulted in a boon for passengers, I have to say. :-(

Seattle
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9. Re: My flights were more expensive this year!

What happened to the thread about the Alaska Air sales?

San Francisco...
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for Sacramento, Puerto Vallarta
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10. Re: My flights were more expensive this year!

I don't know. What did it say? I haven't been online much. Boyfriend had a vacation for the July 4 holiday and we're planning this other trip.

Whatever it was, can people just Google Alaska Air? Sure helps people on the West Coast. I get their regular e-mails anyway. Would it be that one?

PS: Not to get too far off-topic but what we've been dealing with over the last month is trying to book four legs to and from Germany and the Netherlands and it's been exhausting. Makes me REALLY appreciate the flights to Mexico on Alaska, and also on Virgin America from SFO. That's when you feel lucky! Sure takes time.

Edited: 08 July 2014, 23:57