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where do you book flights / accommodation?

australia
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199 posts
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where do you book flights / accommodation?

Who does everyone book their flights and accommodations with.

Do you book on line directly or do you use a travel agent?

Wondering which is the cheapest option. Travel agents and which ones or one line.

melbourne
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3,996 posts
4 reviews
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1. Re: where do you book flights / accommodation?

I do my own bookings...always! I book flights usually direct with the airline, but have used Webjet or similar as they were a bit cheaper once.

As for accommodation, I always go straight to the hotels website, but then also look at all of the online agents such as Asiarooms, Hotels.com etc. I have also emailed direct to the hotel to see if there were any better deals. It just depends on who's cheapest or has the best deal. Some online agents don't have the rooms we want ie: family rooms.

Melbourne, Australia
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217 posts
10 reviews
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2. Re: where do you book flights / accommodation?

I always book my flights directly from the airline's website. Ditto with the hotel.

Perth, Australia
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14,194 posts
28 reviews
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3. Re: where do you book flights / accommodation?

It is soooo much cheaper to do it yourself rather than a travel agent and it's fun to do the research. Over the past 7 or 8 years I've done all the bookings for holidays to Bali, Cambodia and Vietnam and never had a problem. The thing that I really stress is to read all the fine print very well. I book direct with the airlines for flights and for accommodation I have mainly used booking.com, Agoda or direct with the hotel depending on who is cheaper. With the booking companies you can quite often get a deal where you can cancel free of charge up until about a week before the booking date. You just need to supply a credit card number for them to hold the room. As an example of this ( how much cheaper it is to book yourself) my Dad was recently looking at a 2 week tour of Vietnam for $14000 for 2 people. I got on line and looked at the prices of the things that were included in the tour and worked out they could do it themselves for about $5000 !!! Just have a go... You won't look back. Also check out the reviews on the booking sites as well as trip advisor as you can only review on them once you've stayed there.

Edited: 07 March 2014, 09:05
Adelaide
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573 posts
18 reviews
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4. Re: where do you book flights / accommodation?

I agree that booking direct is the best. I joined up to get emails from Jetstar, Air Asia, Virgin etc...and when a good deal comes up I book it and then I search for accommodation.

I always book the flights first.

I usually book direct with the hotel and don't be frightened to ask for ground floor room, quiet location etc...That's what's good about booking it yourself. You never know if a travel agent will let them know. You can also search the accommodation on here and get advice about the best room numbers and you could request that room.

You have all the help you need here on the forum if you are unsure and if worst comes to worst, you can usually hold your flights for a small fee (Jetstar was $15 each I think to hold for 90 hours) while you look into accommodation or you want to ask anything on the forum.

Happy planning!

Edited: 07 March 2014, 11:01
Leeds, UK
Destination Expert
for Bali
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18,300 posts
52 reviews
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5. Re: where do you book flights / accommodation?

I also do my own bookings - dead easy to do with this new fangled Internet thing. I usually search Kayak.com for flight deals, then book appropriately depending on whether the best deal/flight is with the airline or via a third part site.

Accommodation usually involves a trawl of Wego.com to see what's available, filtering by budget, then drawing up a shortlist, looking at reviews, then either booking directly or with a third party site.

San Jose, California
Destination Expert
for California
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15,065 posts
104 reviews
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6. Re: where do you book flights / accommodation?

In general on Trip Advisor you will find that people do their own bookings. There are a couple of boards that I frequent where people use travel agents more (the Cancun and Mayan Riviera boards come to mind) - usually highly touristed places with lots of resorts and packaged deals.

I think that travel agents can be good in some situations, but if you have the time and inclination, doing your own research is generally best. It seems like most agents haven't travelled to many places, so they are picking stuff off a list of possible hotels just like you are when you book on your own. And then sometimes, they give really bad advice. I am a DE for the California board and we frequently get questions from people who are working with an agent - so many times the agents have given them an itinerary that doesn't make any sense or is not even possible (a winter trip through an area that is inaccessible that time of year).

australia
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199 posts
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7. Re: where do you book flights / accommodation?

Great, thanks so much for the information.

Gives me more to look at now. We only just decided to go and are looking Sept. I wish we had decieded earlier because I did see some cheap flights earlier on before we had decided. Our two children are now based as adults because they are over 11 so it becomes more costly now.

Thanks once again. I will start looking at everything recommended to me..

Kind regards

Sydney, Australia
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576 posts
32 reviews
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8. Re: where do you book flights / accommodation?

kaney also join up for the airline newsletters and they will email you with deals. It is free. For instance Jetstar have their birthday sale in the middle of the year. Last year it was in May but usually it is around June. They will send you emails before they advertise to the public. Last year I got buy one ticket get one free so paid for 2 passenger and other two for free. Worked out about $1600 for 4 return from Sydney. Bargain. AND WE LEAVE FOR BALI TODAY...YEH.

Melbourne
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33 posts
25 reviews
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9. Re: where do you book flights / accommodation?

For our trip, we booked directly, for our first trip to Thailand we used an agent. We knew we were going to pay more, but being newbies to travelling we liked the comfort of knowing a lot of it was already organised without us having to stress.

I try to book most of our holidays nowdays directly ourselves, going through the airline and going through the hotel.

The only exception will be the holiday to the USA we are planning, I am going to use an agent for that one, just for peace of mind I think.

coffs harbour...
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5,678 posts
57 reviews
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10. Re: where do you book flights / accommodation?

Yes, book direct, both flights & hotels. This allows you to consider the smaller/boutique type hotels that most agents don't have on their books. Also, often agents charge per person, in Bali, hotels generally charge per room.

Also, sometimes you can find offers for free nights, or negotiate with a hotel if you are staying long term, or are frequent visitors. We don't pay full price at any of the hotels that we regularly stay at.