Booking a flight has never been easier. With a few simple clicks on the internet you can book your tickets and plan your own vacation without the need of a travel operator. However, airline companies are a clever bunch and will often try to lever as much of your hard-earned cash from your pockets as they can.
To avoid being taken for a ride, here are some of the most common flight scams and what to look out for.
We’ve all come across adverts for flights to exotic climes at incredibly low prices.
However, these budget flights often come with a raft of hidden charges that when you add it all up, the ticket can end up costing many times more than from a more expensive airline company.
Budget airlines charge for all sorts of things, such as fees for booking by credit card (how else can you pay on the internet?) fees for putting luggage in the hold, check-in fees, reservations fees, and some even charge you for using the toilet.
When booking your ticket, always read the small print. A common tactic of low-cost airlines is not to mention these fees until you’ve gone through all the booking procedures on their website and are ready to pay.
However, don’t be fooled, if the fee being asked for is not what you expected to pay, don’t book it, as this is a sure sign that they have been trying to hoodwink you.
Some companies buy up loads of tickets from airline companies and offer them cheaply to customers.
However, quite often the reason these tickets are so cheap is that they often arrive or leave at airports miles away from the advertized destination, which often involves you having to spend a fortune on a taxi to get you into town.
Furthermore, to tempt passengers into thinking they are getting a good deal, some companies offer an outbound flight to the more familiar airport, and fail to mention the departure airport is different, which is often in the middle of nowhere.
This ends up costing you a fortune, when you realize that you have turned up at the wrong airport to fly home and have to get a taxi to another airport, often miles away.
When you get a cab to the airport, you wouldn’t expect the driver to charge you separately for the fare and the fuel.
However, this is exactly what some airlines are doing. This is more common outside of the United States, where airlines are splitting their true fares into a “base fare” and a “fuel surcharge.”
The reason airlines are charging this surcharge is because fuel costs vary from country to country. However, rather than charging you an upfront fee, they add the surcharge on afterwards, which means your ticket could end up costing several hundred dollars more than you expected.
Check your tickets carefully, and if the outbound and inbound tickets mention different airports, you have been scammed.
If the price for the ticket doesn’t match the advertized price, it’s a sure sign of a scam.
Take note of any surcharges when you book the ticket, failing to spot this could cost you hundreds of dollars.