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Wishing on a star

Flight Ease - price locked in when you decide to make payment?

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Okay,  a quick HAL Flight Ease 101.   THANKS!

Looking to book flights to Europe, several months out.

If we book thru Flight Ease, this gets our seats, but does not lock in the price... right...  It could go down - Or UP.

Booking has no effect on changes in fares.

 

I assume that you can make payment at any time...  Or is this not required or necessary until cruise final payment date?

 

I am assuming that once you decide to make payment,  then you are locked in.  So you can not take advantage if there are any lower fares.

 

Is this correct?

 

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Once you book your flight, the price is locked.  If the price goes down you can change your flight and book at the lower rate.  But if the price goes up, you do not have to pay the higher price. It’s the same as if your cruise fare goes up or down after you make your deposit.  According to my PCC, I am allowed to make changes to my Flight Ease flights until the final payment due date. In my mind, this means that even if I pay the full balance on the cruise and flight prior to the final due date, I can still make changes if I want, and get get a refund if the fare goes down.  But full disclosure, I have not tested this theory!!! 

 

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50 minutes ago, Wishing on a star said:

So, if one handled it correctly, they could possibly take advantage of any airfare drops, until final payment...

Absolutely,  Or perhaps there will be other offerings (different flight and/or airlines) that will be more attractive and you could simply change your booking with no penalties.  These are some of the reasons why most cruisers do not choose to pay early.  Once you pay for the flight and get ticketed, you cannot make changes without paying the usual expensive penalties.

 

Hank

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I was under the impression that the fare could go up or down, and that you would be liable for whatever the price is at the time you pay in full. I do not believe that you've "locked in" the price when you first book the flights. Read the fine print when you book your flights- I'm not certain that the advice above is correct.

 

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I used FlightEase a couple of times so far and here are my experiences. 

 

First, I have never had the fare go up from the initial prices, unless I make some change to the itinerary. 

 

Second, it pays to constantly go in and check if better routing/fares are available. On our last trip I shaved about $400pp over the exact same itinerary. So far on our next trip I've saved about $200pp. 

 

On my check today, there were no better deals, prices are up about $150pp and available routings are starting to get slim, which does not surprise me as we are under 100 days to departure and less than 7 to final payment. 

 

On another note, is something noted on my reservation is that while final payment is due soon, it states a date several weeks later related to making any changes without fees. That might be something related to the difference between when the reservation actually tickets vs HAL Final Payment. I noticed last time that my according to the airline system, the reservation did not ticket until several weeks after final payment. 

Edited by drowelf

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What I found with Flight Ease was a fare that was hundreds of dollars lower than any commercially available flights at that time. We were looking at $3200 on Orbitz for the same flights that cost us $1300 on Flight Ease. We'll see how it all works out in a few months!

 

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26 minutes ago, TonyC1952 said:

What I found with Flight Ease was a fare that was hundreds of dollars lower than any commercially available flights at that time. We were looking at $3200 on Orbitz for the same flights that cost us $1300 on Flight Ease. We'll see how it all works out in a few months!

 

That has been my experience too. For the times I've used FlightEase, the price I paid has been discounted between 40-60% off the best price I could find via other channels. 

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I thought I read some reports on here that some people who had reservations on FlightEase and later went to check on better prices or flights had the original reservation cancelled.

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7 minutes ago, mauimacho said:

I thought I read some reports on here that some people who had reservations on FlightEase and later went to check on better prices or flights had the original reservation cancelled.

 

I've read those reports too. All I can say is that I'm extremely careful and have not had any issues with my original so far. The times I have changed the reservation, it was very clear about what I was doing and required that I confirm the changes.

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1 hour ago, drowelf said:

 

I've read those reports too. All I can say is that I'm extremely careful and have not had any issues with my original so far. The times I have changed the reservation, it was very clear about what I was doing and required that I confirm the changes.

 

It is my understanding that the website has been upgraded so that inadvertently cancelling your booked flights is difficult. Now it requires pushing a button to change/cancel flights. I haven't tested it yet because I'm happy with the flights and the price I have. Three of us flying Business Class to Europe from the west coast for the same price as one Business Class ticket on the airline's website.

Edited by oceanmom

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18 hours ago, DC1979 said:

Once you book your flight, the price is locked.  If the price goes down you can change your flight and book at the lower rate.  But if the price goes up, you do not have to pay the higher price. It’s the same as if your cruise fare goes up or down after you make your deposit.  According to my PCC, I am allowed to make changes to my Flight Ease flights until the final payment due date. In my mind, this means that even if I pay the full balance on the cruise and flight prior to the final due date, I can still make changes if I want, and get get a refund if the fare goes down.  But full disclosure, I have not tested this theory!!! 

 

I think you are incorrect about the Air fare if you don't lock in the Air fare it could go up one of us is incorrect 🙄

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32 minutes ago, Gail & Marty sailing away said:

I think you are incorrect about the Air fare if you don't lock in the Air fare it could go up one of us is incorrect 🙄

 

The flight I booked via Flight East two months ago has now gone up in price.  If I reserve the same flights today, the price has increased by about $500.  I have not made final payment to HAL yet.  The amount owing is still the amount that was due when I first reserved the flight (the lesser amount).  I guess I don’t know what you mean by locking the fare.  Either you book the flight, in which case the price is locked, or you are just browsing at fares, in which case the price is not locked.  

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The way Holland explained it to me is the only way to lock in the Airfare rate is to pay the Cruise balance in full plus the air. They said if you wait the air could go up and you would have to pay the new airfare rate  at time of final payment for the Cruise. 

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HAL's Flight Ease really saves you money on one-way international flights, usually by thousands.   Domestic (US) flights are usually pretty close to the airline fares.  The big advantage of Flight Ease is you don't have to pay for your flight until final payment date.  If you booked separately with the airline and had to cancel your cruise, you are stuck with the air ticket.   We have used Flight Ease for many international one-ways and never had a price increase, but this time we needed a domestic round trip from TPA to SAN.   We wanted first/business and checked all airlines about 6 months out from the cruise.  The best we could get was $1050 R/T P/P.   Flight Ease's price was $1020.   We took the Flight Ease booking.  We immediately got an airline record locator number and we could select out seats directly with the airline, and also register our FF miles number.   After the booking, we constantly checked the fares as we got closer to our date.  The same airline, same seats slowly went up in price, finally settling at $1289 at final payment date.   On Flight Ease, our tickets stayed the same, never changed.   

Even though the HAL website doesn't specify this, I think when HAL sells you a cruise with a flight, they require the airline to hold to that ticket price, unless the passenger cancels and changes something.   If the airfare would jump by a significant amount, that may encourage the person to cancel the cruise.   That would not reflect well on HAL, so I think they only book you on airlines that will quote a price and stick to it. 

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We just booked a cruise today, and got the Flight Ease Credit as part of the promotion from HAL. We have never used it before. The TA and the HAL agent , both did not know exactly how it worked , and were unable to answer questions about  things like checked baggage allowance /fees . We were directed by the HAL agent to use the online flight selections as part of the Pre and Post Cruise Travel on their site.We did that , and then were told to call our TA to actually book the flights.  There is a place to click to get to baggage info on the Flight Ease site, but it showed an inactive page when we tried to use it .

We played with the different flight options until we found a suitable combination of RT flights, that left us paying just over $80 for the two of us  in addition to our 600.00 allowed air credit . 

We then called and booked the flights, and were told these were main cabin economy seats, and we would have to pay 30.00 per checked bag.

We are going on a 14 day cold climate cruise, realistically  , we will take 2 checked bags each. So instead of flights included in our cruise fare, we are paying an extra 200.00  We feel sort of nickel and dimed and we are still 5 months from final payment . 

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Just checked the Flight Ease fine print, and now you can buy a "restricted" fare or a "flexible" fare using Flight Ease; you either pay the lower fare, up front, no refunds, or pay more and get the more flexible fare. This was not an option when I booked my flights, but I still got a fantastic fare!

 

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Flight Ease just gets you booked on a flight with a pretty decent fare.   The airline dictates the fees for bags.  If you booked yourself with the airline, you would still have to pay the bag fees.   I don't consider that "nickel & diming".   HAL has no control over the airlines supplemental fees.   You can't fly anywhere for $40 P/P, so you did pretty good.

 

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We have booked FE many times, flexible fare.  Each time, I watch prices and have reduced our ticket fare.  The only time the price changes is when I do so on the website.

 

Oceanmom: The FE website HAS added guards all along the way to prevent you from accidently booking or changing a booking when that is not your intention to so, very nice and a much needed change.

 

Here is my question....has anyone out there changed flight tickets after final payment and before the final change date on FE?

Edited by JudithLynne

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On 1/18/2019 at 5:56 PM, Gail & Marty sailing away said:

The way Holland explained it to me is the only way to lock in the Airfare rate is to pay the Cruise balance in full plus the air. They said if you wait the air could go up and you would have to pay the new airfare rate  at time of final payment for the Cruise. 

 

This sounds like another of HAL's frequent misinformation.  One really needs to call HAL three different times and then take the answer that is the same twice.  

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Does anyone know whether you can use FF miles to upgrade a Flight Ease economy seat?

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Depends on the airline. Usually not. I have had success with paying for premium seats, but not with economy to business upgrades.

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6 minutes ago, mrmoviezombie said:

Depends on the airline. Usually not. I have had success with paying for premium seats, but not with economy to business upgrades.

Paying for premium seats initially or upgrading from economy to economy premium with FF miles?

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I've not upgraded with FF miles. But paid to upgrade to premium economy seats. Both before and after paying to have the flights ticketed. Most airlines require you to actually pay HAL for the flights before you can use the locator code to pick seats or upgrades. I'm fairly sure it was only one that let me do it before, and that might have been only picking the seats. 

Note also you have to get the actual airline locator code from the flight ease website, it's listed with each flight, the code that you usually see is actually HAL's and the airlines don't know anything about it. And you might have several different ones if it's complex multi-segment flights that you booked.

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On 1/18/2019 at 2:04 PM, drowelf said:

I used FlightEase a couple of times so far and here are my experiences. 

 

First, I have never had the fare go up from the initial prices, unless I make some change to the itinerary. 

 

Second, it pays to constantly go in and check if better routing/fares are available. On our last trip I shaved about $400pp over the exact same itinerary. So far on our next trip I've saved about $200pp. 

 

On my check today, there were no better deals, prices are up about $150pp and available routings are starting to get slim, which does not surprise me as we are under 100 days to departure and less than 7 to final payment. 

 

On another note, is something noted on my reservation is that while final payment is due soon, it states a date several weeks later related to making any changes without fees. That might be something related to the difference between when the reservation actually tickets vs HAL Final Payment. I noticed last time that my according to the airline system, the reservation did not ticket until several weeks after final payment. 

hi how can i view the other flight rates ???when i log in to Hal  flight ease program  with my cruise booking number i can only view the price for flight had already booked as a flex fair  , is there a safe way to check rates if flight pricing went down  and if yes how ??  , it will be my very first time using  flight easy program so i  am  just worry  not to click in the wrong place  so i don't loose the flight ticked that already in my reservation just want to check if lower rate for plane  are available  right now our ticket for flight are very expensive but balance due in a few month   and it is a flex rate with flight ease 

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