Four Things You Need To Know Before Buying Your Next Airline Ticket | WSJ

Buying airline tickets can be a maddening ordeal. Luckily, new studies are providing some clues into the inner workings of airline ticket pricing. WSJ’s Scott McCartney has the details. Photo: Getty Images.

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Comment (24)

  1. The first one is NOT how airlines operate, a legacy airline such as United, American, or Delta will ALWAYS go through one of their hubs in order to connect your flight, that way they will pool a lot of customers to go to a certain destination. The exception to this is if you live in a big city, where the airline possibly has a hub and you're flying to one of their focus cities or other hubs. The reason the airplane is full to begin with is because legacy airlines use this to pool alot of passengers in one flight!! For low cost carriers, who only fly point to point for the most part, it is sort of true. You will pay a lower fee nonstop (they usually don't do connections since connecting flights is also a cost on the airlines side), but depending on who you fly with, you might end up paying a lot of fees for your checked in luggage, food, etc and the cost might be higher or equal to a connecting legacy carrier.

    Also, its been consistently shown that fuel fees are about 40% of an airline's operating costs, not a quarter (25%)! That is a HUGE, multi-million difference, and it cuts into an airlines profit. Most of the times, airlines will not change ticket prices because of competition with low cost carriers, who have razor thin costs, but they will need to at some point. More efficient new jets (like the now notorious 737 MAX series or the A320neo) also help when there's price spikes.

    Very disappointing and misinforming video from Wall Street Journal!!

  2. just go incognito or better yet "ninja mode" (for those who knows) and you will get waaay better flight deals.
    works equally well on shopping for anything online really

  3. Non-stops are NOT always cheap. Sometimes, multi-trips are cheaper. So, your number 1 is not always true. It’s still a hit or miss.

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