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-   -   Which comes first, the chicken or the egg??? (https://www.fodors.com/community/europe/which-comes-first-the-chicken-or-the-egg-740269/)

imcanadian Oct 2nd, 2007 07:48 AM

Which comes first, the chicken or the egg???
 
Or in this case, which do you do first...book a room or book your transportation?

ira Oct 2nd, 2007 07:51 AM

Hi im,

I always make hotel reservations first.

Good, inexpensive hotels fill up faster than airplanes.

((I))

Nikki Oct 2nd, 2007 07:56 AM

I always books flights first. There are many more choices of places to stay than of flights to the right place at the right time at a favorable airfare.

J62 Oct 2nd, 2007 07:57 AM

Hi im,

I always make air reservations first.

I do explore hotel options before booking air, but don't lock anything in until I know I can travel a specific date.

amyb Oct 2nd, 2007 08:11 AM

Flights first because of personal schedules involved and the never ending quest to get the best combination of fare/schedule/route. I book so far ahead that I never have trouble booking my choice of hotels.

TuckH Oct 2nd, 2007 08:20 AM

For us, there are only a finite number of flight possibilities.

There are (seemingly) an infinite number of lodging possiblities.

Ergo - the chicken.

PatrickLondon Oct 2nd, 2007 08:22 AM

Ah, but why did the chicken cross the road?

cheryllj Oct 2nd, 2007 08:23 AM

I always book my flights first. Then once I know for sure that I am flying into A and home from B, I figure out how many nights in each place from point A to point B and then I book the hotels.

janisj Oct 2nd, 2007 08:26 AM

I wait for an airfare sale - then jump on a fare/location and start planning my trip, booking flats/hotels.

scdreamer Oct 2nd, 2007 08:35 AM

Travel arrangements first for me ... I never considered that one would make lodging arrangements and then try to book airfare, since airfares seem to be so widely priced according to schedule. Also - we rarely stay in hotels - almost exclusively apartments - so we have to prepay for our lodging, and it would not be so great to be tied to a place without having a reasonable airfare in place.

Michel_Paris Oct 2nd, 2007 08:43 AM

Flight first (mostly!)

I would hate to find a decent room, and then find out that I can't get to that room because no flights on the right days. I would not want to gave to pay $$ more on flights because I would need to be more dynamic (e.g. need to fly to another city first) in order to meet a fixed commitment to a room.

I think you can be having pieces of chicken with your omelette though...when you are looking to book anything, hopefully you already have a good idea that a flight is available before you book a room...OR...you use something like travelocty or expedia where you can book both at the same time ( my last trip to Paris was done this way).

My decision may also depend on where I was going...if a large city, I know that there are a wider range of places to stay...but still limited # of flights to that city. More supply of one versus the other. I also don't require much in a hotel room.

If I were going to the countryside or going to a large city during a particularly busy period, I might consider booking hotel before everything gets taken.

JEFF_ Oct 2nd, 2007 02:54 PM

I book flights first since I usually use frequent flier miles.

tuscanlifeedit Oct 2nd, 2007 03:02 PM

Flights first.

NeoPatrick Oct 2nd, 2007 03:17 PM

Well, I may not book the hotel or apartment first, but I've been known to check some difficult ones, find out when they were available, maybe even put them on hold, and THEN book the flight.
This has happened more than once with the flat I rent in London -- checking the dates of availability first -- and we once planned a trip to California based on when we could get a room at the Ahwahnee.

Carrybean Oct 2nd, 2007 03:18 PM

Always flights first since I upgrade with miles.

lauraallais Oct 3rd, 2007 05:54 PM

Oh my goodness, I am getting scared. Almost all of you get your airfare first. I have already booked our accomodations for a trip to France in May.

I have not purchased the airfare because the flights are so expensive right now (about $1200+ pp from California). I just think they have to drop. I've never paid four digits to get to Europe. When I look at the available seats, the flights seem empty.

Am I fooling myself or otherwise misguided? Do you think I should I bite the bullet and get the flights now?

Gavin Oct 3rd, 2007 07:05 PM

It's flights first for me. Having the flights "carved in stone" is a necessary boundary.

MademoiselleFifi Oct 3rd, 2007 07:30 PM

Flight first for solo trips; apartment first if going with a group of friends/family.

NeoPatrick Oct 3rd, 2007 07:38 PM

I think many are missing a basic point that hotels or even apartments that have been reserved in advance (sometimes necessary if you want to get them) can often be changed later if you are unable to get your first choice of airline tickets. On the other hand, it is not so easy to change airline tickets. These points refer to those of us who plan way in advance of course, not just a few weeks before going.

So there's no reason not to do some of both -- hold some hotels or apartments in the hopes that you can get your tickets for when you want, and then if not -- see if you can change the dates for the hotel or apartment.

rex Oct 3rd, 2007 07:51 PM

Normally, flights first for me, though I do often map out the whole itinerary mentally before locking in the flights, and even do some preliminary availability checks, especially when it's a small, high-demand place with a small number of rooms (or if we want a specific special room).

But, I am already looking at options for next summer before I have even engaged my family in the discussion, and I am already finding villas a bit picked over with the location/features I want and many weeks booked up in June even now.

So, I may lock in a villa if I find what I want, without having flights. We will probably set up the trip to arrive 2-4 days before the (Saturday) villa rental is to begin, and we could stay 1-3 days after. Choices of Europe gateway city might even be quite open ended.

Best wishes,

Rex

suze Oct 3rd, 2007 09:27 PM

I first book my flights. Then the hotel(s) in whatever cities. That's all I do from home.

ElaineF Oct 3rd, 2007 10:21 PM

Flights first for me.


quokka Oct 4th, 2007 06:06 AM

Flights first because there are more hotels than flights.

Seamus Oct 4th, 2007 07:32 AM

Rather like Patrick, I look at both things and try to put together the best possible combination. It sometimes becomes a juggling match, especially in high season, matching up availability of the desired housing with that of reasonable airfare. Lowest airfare may not be available for the same dates as the dream lodging. If it potentially saves a huge amount (and that is subjective) I even calculate the cost of paying for a night or two at an alternate lodging in order to get a great airfare. That must be balanced against the PIA factor of having to move, and it requires walloping savings on airfare to justify it.
Having said all that, in practice I usually book the air first, since options are more limited and the limited number of discount fares get snapped up quickly.

mkdiebold Oct 4th, 2007 07:40 AM

We always book plane fare first. Living in Louisville is enough off the beaten path of major east coast airports, that getting a good fare is a challenge. I've always been able to get good suggestions for hotel accommodations from here on Fodor's. I'm envious of you folks who live in areas where you can more easily hop a good fare. I'd travel a whole lot more if it didn't cost me a small fortune for transportation.

nona1 Oct 4th, 2007 10:20 AM

Flights first.

The dates I travel on are more important to me than exactly where I stay. Also, you can always find some accomodation to match your flights, but I'd worry about trying to find a flight to match my accomodation some places I travel to. If you are going somewhere with only one or two flights a week of course you will get the flight first.

Horses for courses though.

sandi_travelnut Oct 4th, 2007 10:46 AM

Flights first. Sometimes your first choice of depature dates are not available or you get a cheaper rate if you are more flexible. Can't book hotels until you know when you'll be there.

lynnejoel1015 Oct 7th, 2007 06:38 PM

flights first. big planning stuff then down to the details:

1. international flights
2. book hotels
3. book inter-city/inter-country transport (flights, trains, etc.)
4. daily itineraries - which is where things stand now for our trip to london, rome, paris!


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