Expedia discounts

May 16th, 2006, 07:42 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 8
Expedia discounts

I'm gutted, a flight and hotel for Vegas is £400 more today than it was yesterday because the "Expedia discount for booking togetherquot; has been reduced by £400.

Does anyone know how Expedia works with regards to discounts? Is it likely that the discount will be increased again over the next few weeks or should I just look for another flight?
MyronAub is offline  
May 16th, 2006, 11:33 AM
Join Date: Apr 2003
Posts: 19,419
I always start my searches with Expedia - to see the flight schedules, hotel locations, etc...

Don't remember ever buying a flight through Expedia or Orbitz, as doing so on the airline's website is cheaper. And in case of a problem I'd deal with the airline, not just some 800 phone number.

As for hotels... lately it's the same, the websites offer better rates.

So check the hotel and air price separately and see for yourself if it's better.

Often I see posts from Fodorites, they see a good rate, but when trying to make reservations, the rate is no longer available. Old trick. Probably the same happened to you.
FainaAgain is offline  
May 16th, 2006, 12:51 PM
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Another thing to note - the "discount for booking together" is only off of Expedia's own separate rates, not the best available rates. I, too, have always found better deals buying hotel and airfare separately than through a site like expedia.

That said, it's impossible to predict whether you'll see the same lower price again. Prices do fluctuate, and may jump incredibly high only to fall again later. Or they may not fall again later.

If you can find another flight/hotel combo in your price range, go for it.
jlm_mi is offline  
May 17th, 2006, 04:29 AM
Join Date: Nov 2004
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It sounds like you are travelling from the UK.

I agree with the above that I have never seen anyone get better deal by booking a package to Las Vegas. The best way seems to be to book your flight and hotel separately.
Where2Travel is offline  
May 17th, 2006, 07:18 PM
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I would like to explain how "vacation packages" work.

There are two main types of airfares - published, and bulk (or net). There are others such as web fares, but let's not 'go there' for now.

A published fare is a fare that is offered by an airline through all of its booking methods, direct, through a travel agent, through a web site, etc.

A bulk (or net) airfare is a special contracted fare that is offered to a travel agency. That agency may have a web site, like Expedia. Agencies that have more customers have more bargaining power and usually obtain more bulk airfare contracts from a variety of carriers.

Most bulk airfares have three things in common. 1) The bulk airfare does not fluctuate from day to day, as the rate is contracted in advance based upon the city pair, seasons, day of week, etc. 2) The bulk airfare cannot be disclosed to the passenger by the agency. This is to prevent the agency from competing directly with the airline's own published fares. 3) The airline requires the agency to sell the bulk airfare must with a land component (usually a hotel). This is known to most people as a vacation package. The price of the package will not be broken down to the client, therefore keeping the true airfare a secret.

In general, these bulk airfares are lower than published fares. However, when the airline offers a special discount published fare, the bulk airfare may not be lower than the special published airfare, at least for the duration of the sale.

The airline allows access to the bulk airfares, by requiring the agency to book a particular "class of service". The airline sets the number of bulk seats on any given flight and can restrict access to that class of service at any time by selling out that class of service.

The airline offers these bulk fares as a way to fill seats, but maintains full control over the available inventory by turning it on or off, as the airline sees fit.

When you go to a site like Expedia, and choose hotel and air, or vacation package, the booking engine (fancy word for Expedia's big computer) will go grab the hotel rates for the city/dates you have chosen. Next the booking engine will go look to see if any bulk airfares are available to "package" with the hotel. Finally, the booking engine will look at available published fares. The site will then return the lowest airfare/hotel combination it can find based upon availability for the dates you have chosen.

When you shop for a vacation package, follow these steps:

1) Select hotel only and make a note of the hotel rates that are returned for the hotels you are interested in.

2) Select air only and make a note of the best airfares that are returned for the cities/dates you have chosen.

3) Select "air and hotel" or "vacation package" (every site is different) and make a note of the combined air/hotel rates that are returned.

If the rate is the same as the combined published airfare and current hotel rate, you are not being offered a special rate (at least not on the airfare). If the rate is lower when booking together than it is when you price the air/hotel separately, you are most likely being offered a bulk airfare. By subtracting the hotel rate from the package rate, you can determine what bulk airfare you are being offered.

Always, always, always, price every component separately, and then price it as a package to see if you are getting a better deal.

When a rate suddenly goes up, it is most likely that the airfare you had previously been quoted is no longer available. This is either because the airline has already sold all of their lowest priced seats, or because the airline has "turned off" the bulk airfare inventory that was available the last time you looked.

I hope this clears things up.
vegaslocal is offline  
May 17th, 2006, 08:05 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 2,285
You also might try www.hotels.com and www.orbitz.com Orbitz is advertising that their rates are much lower than Expedia, so give it a try.
wantsomesun is offline  
May 17th, 2006, 09:08 PM
Join Date: Oct 2005
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I usually book separately because it always seems that the "package deals" aren't always available for my dates of travel.

I have to say, vegaslocal, that the information you posted it really quite helpful. Thanks so much for sharing that!
maria_so is offline  
May 17th, 2006, 09:18 PM
Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 201
great post vegas local, very informative. thanks

Bikom is offline  
May 30th, 2006, 08:22 AM
Join Date: Feb 2003
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I checked constantly back in March/april for our trip to Vegas. I never stopped checking and comparing package deals to individual bookings. Even to this date usairways much cheaper doing the vacation package flying from PHL. Due to the costs of flying perhaps this is true. We leave 7 June and if I were to book hotel and air seperate it would cost more for us from the east coast. Of course this is non-stop flights.
diann is offline  
Jun 6th, 2006, 02:43 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 8
Thanks for all the replys.

In my case, from the UK the package price was way cheaper than booking direct via the airline but then that may be because I specifically wanted to fly Virgin Atlantic.

In the end I just booked at the new price, although £400 ($740) is not to be sneezed at, I got the exact dates, flight times and hotel I wanted and I was getting stressed worrying I'd leave it too late and have to compromise.

As I'm treating some friends to accompany my girlfriend and I on this trip, and had already told them about it, I decide it wasn't worth ruining the holiday over such an amount.

Thanks especially to vegaslocal for the very comprehensive explanation, next time I'll just book immediately when I see a great deal.

MyronAub is offline  
Jun 7th, 2006, 11:44 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 370
You're quite welcome Myron, and I hope you have a wonderful time here in Las Vegas!
vegaslocal is offline  
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