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IJustWantToGo36

It is EZ-AIR  limited to the choices on the website?

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1st time booking air with Princess. When i coming back from South America on a  repositioning with celebrity,
if it was not available on the website you can have a conversation with someone in the air department.

 

It does not look like there is a number to speak with somebody specifically in EZ-AIR to discuss more complex arrangements.

 

Any thoughts?

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Call the main number and ask to speak with the Air Department.  If I remember correctly, they handle the more complex arrangements, but they cannot handle all flights; just the ones for which Princess has available contracted buckets and city pairs. 

 

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Yes, you can call. EZ Air does have lots of flexibility. You can basically select the airports and days. As an example we are sailing from Ft. Lauderdale on Feb 5th, but have a flight booked through EZ Air on January 26th to Orlando. I mention this because maybe you are not aware of this flexibility.

 Search around on EZ Air. You may be surprised to find your preferred flights. I believe that one area where EZ Air has fairly strict rules is with air flight times on disembarkation day. The flights have to fit within their minimum time frame after ship's arrival. 

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I have tried to call several times.  First you need to talk to a regular rep and they then call the air department and pass along the information.    They would not connect me,  We went back and forth for a long time.  I asked why I could not just talk to them directly but she just said this is the way we do it.   After several calls about an issue, they finally let me talk to an air rep.   It was so nice years ago when they transferred you right away.   Not sure why the change but I bet many people called to have them book the flights for them rather than doing the research themselves, especially since many TA's will no longer handle booking flights.

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2 minutes ago, compozer said:

I have tried to call several times.  First you need to talk to a regular rep and they then call the air department and pass along the information.    They would not connect me,  We went back and forth for a long time.  I asked why I could not just talk to them directly but she just said this is the way we do it.   After several calls about an issue, they finally let me talk to an air rep.   It was so nice years ago when they transferred you right away.   Not sure why the change but I bet many people called to have them book the flights for them rather than doing the research themselves, especially since many TA's will no longer handle booking flights.

I agree Sandy. They have never connected me when I have asked.

 

Might help if the OP provided a tad more info.  🤔

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I’ve never had a problem asking to be connected to the air department ... BUT ... the time on hold waiting for them to answer can be very long! Often more than an hour!!  And, that was after the time waiting to be connected to the original rep.

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I think it also depends on the rep.   I call Princess rather than bothering my TA on some issues.  I know what is going on and have certain questions about  - they may be very minor things but I like to have everything printed off and in front of me.    I like to control my cruise and am not happy that I now have to transfer it to my TA within 60 days of booking.   I use to wait until a few weeks before final payment.

If you are with a TA, then you are not suppose to call Princess and some reps are very strict about that but I have had others that have helped me out.

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7 minutes ago, compozer said:

I think it also depends on the rep.   I call Princess rather than bothering my TA on some issues.  I know what is going on and have certain questions about  - they may be very minor things but I like to have everything printed off and in front of me.    I like to control my cruise and am not happy that I now have to transfer it to my TA within 60 days of booking.   I use to wait until a few weeks before final payment.

If you are with a TA, then you are not suppose to call Princess and some reps are very strict about that but I have had others that have helped me out.

I think with air issues that is an exception.

Princess has not questioned me about the TA when I have called with EZ Air questions etc on my booking.

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42 minutes ago, Colo Cruiser said:

I agree Sandy. They have never connected me when I have asked.

 

Might help if the OP provided a tad more info.  🤔

We have been able to get connected to the EZAIR folks (this is a separate air travel company that handles air for Princess, HAL and Seabourn).  But there is some resistance on the part of Princess reservations clerks to give you the direct number or connect you to that company.  Apparently the Princess reservations agents have been instructed to try and handle the EZAIR issues and only transfer if absolutely necessary.  But we have had good luck by being somewhat insistent.

 

The irony is that once we have reached the real EZAIR folks (who have always been very helpful) we have been told that they do not understand why the cruise lines try to "protect" them from customers :).  I should add that we have not had luck in using flights not listed in the online software.  An EZAIR agent told me that the contracts (which are cruise line specific) are negotiated long in advance and there are restrictions on the flights, number of slots per day, airports, airlines, etc.  Folks should consider that it is first come first serve on snagging the best deals (especially for International Business/First) so it is wise to book flights ASAP using the Flexair option.  You can always change or cancel those flights (up until about 45 days prior to your cruise) with no penalties.

 

Hank

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6 minutes ago, Hlitner said:

We have been able to get connected to the EZAIR folks (this is a separate air travel company that handles air for Princess, HAL and Seabourn).  But there is some resistance on the part of Princess reservations clerks to give you the direct number or connect you to that company.  Apparently the Princess reservations agents have been instructed to try and handle the EZAIR issues and only transfer if absolutely necessary.  But we have had good luck by being somewhat insistent.

 

The irony is that once we have reached the real EZAIR folks (who have always been very helpful) we have been told that they do not understand why the cruise lines try to "protect" them from customers :).  I should add that we have not had luck in using flights not listed in the online software.  An EZAIR agent told me that the contracts (which are cruise line specific) are negotiated long in advance and there are restrictions on the flights, number of slots per day, airports, airlines, etc.  Folks should consider that it is first come first serve on snagging the best deals (especially for International Business/First) so it is wise to book flights ASAP using the Flexair option.  You can always change or cancel those flights (up until about 45 days prior to your cruise) with no penalties.

 

Hank

Ha! They should be glad Princess. Protects them. I can only imagine the onslaught they would endure if they didn’t.

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46 minutes ago, compozer said:

I think it also depends on the rep.   I call Princess rather than bothering my TA on some issues.  I know what is going on and have certain questions about  - they may be very minor things but I like to have everything printed off and in front of me.    I like to control my cruise and am not happy that I now have to transfer it to my TA within 60 days of booking.   I use to wait until a few weeks before final payment.

If you are with a TA, then you are not suppose to call Princess and some reps are very strict about that but I have had others that have helped me out.

Actually, EZAIR is the exception to the rule.  Princess will cheerfully deal directly with those of us who use  cruise/travel agents...only when it involves air.  We do this all the time and have never had an issue.  In fact, our favorite cruise agent/agency (we use several different agencies) does not want anything to do with air.  The problem is that there are just too many air options and relying on a third party (such as a cruise agent) to handle air becomes difficult.  Consider that because of where we live, when booking international flights we can depart from Harrisburg, BWI, IAD, PHL or EWR and even JFK.  So we tend to look at all those airports and evaluate all the Business/First Class options.  There is no way our cruise agent can perform that function and make the quick decisions necessary to book.

 

Hank

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2 hours ago, compozer said:

If you are with a TA, then you are not suppose to call Princess and some reps are very strict about that but I have had others that have helped me out.

My TA is reluctant to answer questions about EzAir. I called Princess and when I was asked if I was with a travel agent, I told her yes, but I had a question about EzAir. She went ahead and answered the question.

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I have had some luck getting EZAir to list more flights by using the filters upfront.  For example, one of my upcoming cruises does not list any United flights except for ones with 2 or more connections if I don't use the filters.  But when I choose United and 1 connection upfront, it will display my desired flights.  I think it only displays a preset number of flights and it seems like they are the least expensive ones.

 

As for calling Princess for unique arrangements, I have called Princess when I want a quote for departure business / return economy and the CSR had a form and took down they details so they could contact the air department on my behalf.  However, the last time I tried this, the air department told the CSR that they will do longer booked round trips in different classes.  Not sure what else they won't do these days but just thought I would pass that along.

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1 hour ago, azbirdmom said:

I have had some luck getting EZAir to list more flights by using the filters upfront.  For example, one of my upcoming cruises does not list any United flights except for ones with 2 or more connections if I don't use the filters.  But when I choose United and 1 connection upfront, it will display my desired flights.  I think it only displays a preset number of flights and it seems like they are the least expensive ones.

 

As for calling Princess for unique arrangements, I have called Princess when I want a quote for departure business / return economy and the CSR had a form and took down they details so they could contact the air department on my behalf.  However, the last time I tried this, the air department told the CSR that they will do longer booked round trips in different classes.  Not sure what else they won't do these days but just thought I would pass that along.

EZAir will now allow you to book one class for departure and another class for return online. 

 

When I go to Flight Search, it gives me the following option under Class:

  • Choose by direction
  • Premium Economy
  • First
  • Economy
  • Business

If I select "Choose by direction", then I am given a choice for "Class on Departure Flight" and for "Class on Return Flight", and I can select different options on each.

 

They also give choices for alternate cities for both departure and arrival. This is a lot more options than they used to have.

 

 

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30 minutes ago, NavyVeteran said:

EZAir will now allow you to book one class for departure and another class for return online. 

 

When I go to Flight Search, it gives me the following option under Class:

  • Choose by direction
  • Premium Economy
  • First
  • Economy
  • Business

If I select "Choose by direction", then I am given a choice for "Class on Departure Flight" and for "Class on Return Flight", and I can select different options on each.

 

They also give choices for alternate cities for both departure and arrival. This is a lot more options than they used to have.

 

 

 

Well isn't that interesting!  How long has that been there?  I know you can change destination cities and that has been there for a while but I had not noticed "choose by direction" before.  Thank you!

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7 minutes ago, azbirdmom said:

 

Well isn't that interesting!  How long has that been there?  I know you can change destination cities and that has been there for a while but I had not noticed "choose by direction" before.  Thank you!

I have no idea how long it has been there - I just noticed it. I normally just book Economy, so I don't normally look there.

 

Another fairly recent change on the website is the ability to add a stopover to the departure and/or the return flight. They have really become more flexible.

 

They still don't have the option to select different classes on different legs of a flight; for example, economy on a domestic leg and business on a trans-Atlantic leg. However, they often give that option without you asking for - or wanting - it. When I request business, it will provide several options with economy on the domestic leg.

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7 minutes ago, NavyVeteran said:

I have no idea how long it has been there - I just noticed it. I normally just book Economy, so I don't normally look there.

 

Another fairly recent change on the website is the ability to add a stopover to the departure and/or the return flight. They have really become more flexible.

 

They still don't have the option to select different classes on different legs of a flight; for example, economy on a domestic leg and business on a trans-Atlantic leg. However, they often give that option without you asking for - or wanting - it. When I request business, it will provide several options with economy on the domestic leg.

 

I realized that the last two weeks I've only left that dropdown at economy which is why I probably hadn't noticed it.  And I saw the stopover option too which can be a handy feature.  I'm very happy about the improvements - and still happy about the prices and flexibility!

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