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Booking a Flight on Multiple Airlines

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Jul 4th, 2014, 04:57 PM
  #1
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Booking a Flight on Multiple Airlines

I'm trying to figure out the best way to book a flight that involves UA, Avianca (a Star Alliance partner) and Aeromexico. On the UA website I can't get it to show the Avianca flights. I gather I need to book the Aeromexico flight separately. There flights are on different days and not dependent upon each other. Thanks!
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Jul 4th, 2014, 06:04 PM
  #2
 
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If you'd post your itinerary and any extenuating circumstances you're likely to get a more comprehensive solution.
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Jul 4th, 2014, 07:21 PM
  #3
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We leave IAD to BOG. Weeks later we fly BOG to MEX. Weeks later MEX to OAX. Eventually OAX to DCA (or IAD if DCA not possible, but I see a flight to DCA).
I'm surprised that I couldn't just book thru UA for Avianca. ITA shows the IAD BOG as UA operated by Avianca, but it doesn't show on UA.
This is Jan/Feb time frame. At this point exact days are flexible, but I need to nail the flights down so I can book my stays.
Thanks!
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Jul 4th, 2014, 10:03 PM
  #4
 
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If it's showing on ITA, they show you how to book it and fare construction.

If UA's website is like Delta's website, not all alliance flights show. Sometimes you have to call them and book things that can't be booked on the website. On Delta, to get all flights to show, you have to use the search by schedule, not the search by price. UA seems to be the same as the Avianca flight shows for me. I searched a one-way IAD/BOG in Feb and clicked the search by schedule button. Here's the results on UA.

from
$492

7 tickets
at this price

Depart:
3:36 p.m.
Tue., Feb. 10, 2015
Washington, DC (IAD - Dulles)
Arrive:
9:01 p.m.
Tue., Feb. 10, 2015
Bogota, Colombia (BOG)
Travel Time:
5 hr 25 mn
Distance:
2,366 miles
Flight: UA6668
Operated by AVIANCA.
Aircraft: Airbus A319
Fare Class: Economy (Q)
Meal: None
See On-Time Performance
View Seats
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Jul 5th, 2014, 05:25 AM
  #5
 
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Book it using an online agency such as Expedia or Travelocity. Airline websites only sell their own services and those of their alliances. Airlines are not a travel agency who are able to combine various airlines on one ticket (where appropriate and where the pricing makes sense to do so.) It may be worth calling them as well, as complex/multi leg itineraries can be difficult to get best pricing on a website.
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Jul 5th, 2014, 06:09 AM
  #6
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Thanks! This am I was finally able to get the IAD-BOG & return OAX-DCA to show up to show on the UA website with the flight operated by Avianca.

I'll try Expedia etc to see what prices I can get.

Would I be better off booking with an agent as we need multiple domestic flights internal in COlombia that may very well be with Avianca. I can also try on the Avianca website since many of the flights will be on Avianca.
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Jul 5th, 2014, 08:43 AM
  #7
 
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The problem with booking with an online agency is that if anything goes wrong, they won't help you and the airline will refer you back to the (useless) agency. Lots of horror stories here.
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Jul 5th, 2014, 09:18 AM
  #8
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Kathie, I agree. I wouldn't book that way, just trying to see what the options are.
This is so frustrating since the UA site keeps not working. Its fine then I try another option and it says error.
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Jul 5th, 2014, 09:51 AM
  #9
 
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It's untrue that online agencies do not help if "anything goes wrong". I have used both Expedia and Travelocity where things like flight cancellations and time changes have happened, which were handled just like booking direct with the airline. The horror stories are one-sided accounts which very often don't make any sense. If you have a multi-airline itinerary, you should be booking with an agency as an airline website can't offer this type of booking, or you can book it through various airline websites and put the booking together like a jigsaw puzzle and pay potentially over the odds.
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Jul 5th, 2014, 10:40 AM
  #10
 
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When faced with the same situation, I called an actual human travel agent in my city and paid them $20 to book it. Nothing went wrong with my flights, so i can't speak to whether she would have been helpful in that situation, or what the downsides might be. But I was happy to pay the $20 and place my confidence in a professional rather than in myself
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Jul 5th, 2014, 12:03 PM
  #11
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Kayak, Expedia etc can't do the trip. They all said to go back and change dates, departures etc.
Avianca Airlines was very helpful. The bottom line is that if I book with them I can get a discount on the 3 internal flights in Colombia internal flights were not a part of the original post). But they can't book the UA flight from OAX to DCA. I haven't talked to UA, but I doubt they will be of much help since the bulk of the travel is where they don't fly.
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Jul 5th, 2014, 01:17 PM
  #12
 
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NewbE, just above, has the right idea. Find yourself a competent real-life travel agent, pay them an in-person visit and, I have no doubt, the struggle will melt away. Doing it piecemeal is rarely as good as having an agent who can be responsible for all of them and to help if you need it. Otherwise, exceedingly false economy.
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