Go Non-Refundable and Travel Insure
For those of you who book Refundable Airline Tickets, take a look at this Airline Ticket Hack from AardvarkCompare.com – Go Non-Refundable and Travel Insure – Your flight price has dropped by up to 70%.
If you are even thinking about buying a refundable ticket, then do the math on taking a non-refundable ticket, and travel insurance.
The airlines are robbing people blind with their 3x pricing on refundable tickets.
That is the basis math – you need to check each time, but the seat price for a Refundable flight, particularly when booked far in advance, is typically 3 or 4 times as much as a Non-Refundable flight. You will hear of these Non-Refundable tickets being called ‘Throwaway Tickets’ because if you don’t fly, you may as well throw them away. A very clever airline marketing exec came up with that expression, we would imagine. The best way to think about Non-Refundable tickets is ‘Inexpensive, yet Insurable’. Not as sexy, we grant you, but certainly, much, much cheaper, most of the time.
This is a recent example, using American Airlines between Dallas and LA.
We are looking around 6 months ahead of time.
However, please try it out using other airlines and other routes.
Note that the biggest savings come when a passenger is booking a more expensive seat (First, Business), but the percentage savings hold true through all classes on an airline.
Simplistically, a Refundable Seat can cost 300% of the price of a Non-Refundable Seat that is then bundled with inexpensive insurance.
So, we are looking to buy a Refundable Economy Ticket.
DFW - LAX in August for a week (6 months from now).
American wants $2,100 for a Main Cabin Fully Flexible Seat.
Truly and honestly, we have no idea what this is. It’s in the Main Cabin, but is more expensive than a First Class seat. Truly Baffling.
So, we don’t click on this, but seek a more traditional Main Cabin (Economy) seat.
And now, this looks like a bargain, after we managed to avoid the $2,100 fully flex seat.
American wants $1,150 for a Main Cabin Flexible Seat.
So, it is flexible, just not ‘fully’ flexible. American are kind; we can change our flights, not lose all of our money, but we will need to pay for the effort to make the flight change. $200. For a change fee. That makes the convenience fee to book a movie ticket seem fair and justifiable. $200 extra to allow us to make a change. Unbelievable.
Still, it’s only $200. It’s not as though the airlines feed on this at all. Surely, it cannot add up to much…
Well, according to the US Bureau of Transportation Statistics, the Top 25 US Airlines rake in $3Bn a year in Reservation Change Fees. And $4Bn a year in Baggage Fees.
If you didn’t dislike the airlines before, you probably don’t love them now.
But, let’s go beat them at their own game..
Just before you hit the ‘Buy’ button you, unlike almost every traveler, decide to get creative.
Why not buy a Non-Refundable seat, and wrap it up with some ‘Cancel For Any Reason’ Travel Insurance from a Marketplace like AardvarkCompare.com
American wants $400 for the Non-Refundable Main Cabin Seat.
Add the Insurance, it will cost around $50.
We are choosing a really robust set of coverages..
Cancellation (Sickness, Death, Incapacitation etc) – 100% Refund.
Cancellation for Work Reason – 100% Refund.
Cancellation for Any other Reason – 75% Refund.
So, for $450 a customer booking that DFW – LAX return has nearly the same level of coverage as the person paying $1,150 for exact same seat.
A $700 saving.
Remember that the person in the $1,150 seat still has to pay $200 every time they make a change.
Whereas the person in the $450 seat just needs to throw the ticket away and use their insurance if a flight needs to be cancelled.
However, we haven’t explored why these price discrepancies exist. Normally there is no such thing as a free lunch.
It’s pretty simple – Travel Insurance is based on risk, and the probability of claim.
Whereas flight prices are based on pricing models that try to gouge as much money out of a passenger as is humanly possible.