Jump to content

Have you used FlightEase?


I Luv Crusin
 Share

Recommended Posts

We are doing a transatlantic from Amsterdam to FLL.  Home is in the Washington DC area.  We'd like to fly over a few days early and then straight home from FLL.  What are your experiences with adding on stops?  I need to look into it more but we'd like a stop over for a day or so either in Oslo or Stockholm.  Or maybe we should just wait for a cruise that includes those ports.  Right now we can't add on another itinerary to this trip.  At the very least I'd like a day free in Amsterdam to sightsee.  

 

What are your experiences with HAL's flights?  

 

Thanks-Lesley

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

We have used Flight Ease many times. I always check flights on line so I know if I'm getting a good deal. No money tied up til final payment date, and don't have to mess with airline cancellation fees and fighting to get your money back from airline if cruise is cancelled. Always go to embarkation port a few days early, use HAL transfer to ship. Have stayed a few days after cruise, but never tried adding another stop and layover. 

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I like Flight Ease so much for international that I added a short HAL cruise to  my now-canceled summer European vacation.  The price of the Business class plus the shortie cruise was cheaper than booking the Business class without the cruise.  At the time I asked and you have a 30 day window on either side and can use any of the port cities that they service

Edited by Mary229
  • Like 1
  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

7 minutes ago, Alberta Quilter said:

Can one book directly through flightease, via telephone or through the website, or does one have to go through one’s TA?  I have questions related to our travel plans and would prefer not to have to go through a third party.  My TA is the big box store...

You can book directly through the web or phone even if you use a TA for your cruise.  I use my very special TA but watch the flights myself.  You can change them too as long as you pick a flexible fare.   The only big issue is you have to be booked to see the screens online and you can’t book or see information until 330 days from the last day of your cruise.  

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

9 minutes ago, Alberta Quilter said:

Can one book directly through flightease, via telephone or through the website, or does one have to go through one’s TA?  I have questions related to our travel plans and would prefer not to have to go through a third party.  My TA is the big box store...

I booked flight ease on my own and skipped the BB store. The BIG mistake I made is that I paid for the ticket ahead of time so that I could chose my seats. That put me into a could not cancel position. Luckily the airlines changed my flight so that I had an argument for getting my money back.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Use FlightEase going over and get a Southwest from FLL to either BWI (direct) or IAD (one stop, I think ATL). That’s what I’m planning on doing.  I would prefer to come into BWI but it depends on whether or not I can go to Amsterdam from BWI or IAD.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

2 hours ago, Mary229 said:

You can book directly through the web or phone even if you use a TA for your cruise.  I use my very special TA but watch the flights myself.  You can change them too as long as you pick a flexible fare.   The only big issue is you have to be booked to see the screens online and you can’t book or see information until 330 days from the last day of your cruise.  

 

2 hours ago, aa7yy said:

I booked flight ease on my own and skipped the BB store. The BIG mistake I made is that I paid for the ticket ahead of time so that I could chose my seats. That put me into a could not cancel position. Luckily the airlines changed my flight so that I had an argument for getting my money back.


Thank you both.  I could see the flights that I want, at least the long haul portion, with my preferred airline.  I would like to tweak the dates.  I’d also like to know more about the HAL pre cruise hotel package before committing but they don’t seem to have that info in the travel planning part of the website.  Flight ease staff are unable to help with hotel packages, right?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

2 minutes ago, Alberta Quilter said:

 


Thank you both.  I could see the flights that I want, at least the long haul portion, with my preferred airline.  I would like to tweak the dates.  I’d also like to know more about the HAL pre cruise hotel package before committing but they don’t seem to have that info in the travel planning part of the website.  Flight ease staff are unable to help with hotel packages, right?

The website is quirky but you should be able to change the dates on the website.  I have never used HAL’s hotel service so I don’t know but I am sure if they can’t they will forward your call to someone who can

Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, Alberta Quilter said:

 


Thank you both.  I could see the flights that I want, at least the long haul portion, with my preferred airline.  I would like to tweak the dates.  I’d also like to know more about the HAL pre cruise hotel package before committing but they don’t seem to have that info in the travel planning part of the website.  Flight ease staff are unable to help with hotel packages, right?

As a general rule we have found cruise line (including HAL) hotel packages to cost about twice the price of booking the same (or similar) hotel on one's own...even after factoring in the cost of transfers.   You are correct that the "Flight Ease" Staff (assuming you can get to those specific folks) only handle air.    While we routinely use Flight Ease to snag great Business Class fares we never use HAL for hotel packages.  Working on our own we can find comparable or better hotels in better locations for 1/2 to 2/3 of the price charged by HAL.  

 

DW and I have another reason we dislike the cruise line hotel packages.  They usually include group transfers which means hanging around and waiting for the entire group.  When we want to get from an airport to a hotel we usually grab a taxi or Uber and just go (no waiting).   There are a few ports around the world where using a cruise line transfer makes sense...but those ports are few.

 

Hank

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Our personal practice is to always use Flight Ease for cruises leaving from international ports, and always use domestic airlines for cruises leaving from domestic ports.  Flight Ease offers pricing which is at least equivalent to booking to direct and almost always much better for these long-haul segments. The flexibility is always much better including the ability to cancel without fee up to the final payment date.  Also, when booking with Flight Ease, HAL has the responsibility and bears the cost to get you to the next port of call if your outbound flight is delayed or cancelled, and to get you home of there is a problem with the cruise or the return flight.

 

We book the pre-cruise hotel directly with the hotels if we're comfortable with the departure port city. We pay the premium price to book the pre-cruise hotel through HAL if we're uncomfortable to manage through the city or transfers ourselves. When booking the hotel through HAL, we've been very satisfied with the hotel selections and service received despite the premium price. There is a balance that you have to sort out between convenience and pure price.

  • Like 3
Link to comment
Share on other sites

We usually book our own flights but our last 11-night cruise on Eurodam included a generous credit for flights booked through Flight Ease, and since we were embarking in one port (Vancouver) and flying home from another (San Diego)we took the credit and booked through Flight Ease.  Experience booking was just fine, my comments here regard the service.

 

On the day of our flights to Vancouver (PHL-TOR, TOR-YVR), which was day before embarkation, our flight to TOR was cancelled.  There was a mad scramble to the desk by passengers to get re-booked, and most of Air Canada's flights to YVR were booked solid that day.  With such a long flying time, we knew that this was going to harder than just hopping a flight to Florida (or, worst case, we can drive to Florida overnight.  Can't do that across the country).

 

Instead of heading to the desk, I called Flight Ease.  I got through to their emergency travel help number and a wonderful agent walked me through a number of options available to us, some of which included switching airlines.  She told me to go ahead to the desk with the suggested flights as the best option was less than an hour from departure on a different airline, but that she would work other options if we couldn't get seats.  Up to the desk, and sure enough...the suggested option was available.  Other passengers seemed surprised that I was getting out that day and they were not (most were not getting flights until the next day) but thanks to Flight Ease working the system for me, I had the information I needed to get to Vancouver that day.

 

Not only did we make that flight that left less than an hour from the change, they got our bags loaded on that flight as well...and everything made the new connection in Chicago with ease.  Best part?  We ended up landing in Vancouver three hours earlier than we would have on the original flights. 

 

In this case, I was very happy I had Flight Ease to support us.

 

 

  • Like 4
Link to comment
Share on other sites

11 hours ago, Hlitner said:

As a general rule we have found cruise line (including HAL) hotel packages to cost about twice the price of booking the same (or similar) hotel on one's own...even after factoring in the cost of transfers.   You are correct that the "Flight Ease" Staff (assuming you can get to those specific folks) only handle air.    While we routinely use Flight Ease to snag great Business Class fares we never use HAL for hotel packages.  Working on our own we can find comparable or better hotels in better locations for 1/2 to 2/3 of the price charged by HAL.  

 

DW and I have another reason we dislike the cruise line hotel packages.  They usually include group transfers which means hanging around and waiting for the entire group.  When we want to get from an airport to a hotel we usually grab a taxi or Uber and just go (no waiting).   There are a few ports around the world where using a cruise line transfer makes sense...but those ports are few.

 

Hank

 

I normally agree with you on this but for various reasons, we will likely need to use the HAL hotel package.  

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Most of the posts over the years about Flight Ease have to do with TA flights. We'll (fingers crossed 1/2022) be flying into Sydney and leaving out of Auckland. Can anyone share their experiences with those types of flights? Are they still competitively priced?

Thank you

Link to comment
Share on other sites

6 minutes ago, Sea42 said:

Most of the posts over the years about Flight Ease have to do with TA flights. We'll (fingers crossed 1/2022) be flying into Sydney and leaving out of Auckland. Can anyone share their experiences with those types of flights? Are they still competitively priced?

Thank you

We are in a different world (post covid) so we are only speculating on the future.  But, we have found excellent savings when using Flightease (or the similar EZAIR from Princess) on flights down under.  As we have often posted, the cruise line air deals for International Business Class are often less then half the price of booking independently.  HAL's FlightEase gets access to the coveted "P" fares (the lowest Business Class fares) and other contracted fares.   We have also seen some great fares for Premium Economy (Air New Zealand has decent seats in this class).  As to Economy, you will usually save some money although it sometimes makes sense to book independently since it gives you access to airlines/flights not always discounted by FlightEase.

 

But there is another huge issue.  Any future cruise involving Austalia and New Zealand are going to be questionable because those countries have made it clear they are being very cautious about COVID.  So, I suspect as other countries open up to most tourism there many still be restrictions for the Aus/NZ market.  Booking through FlightEase and using Flex fares gives you a lot of protection if the cruise/trip gets cancelled.  Purchasing air on your own makes it very difficult to get cash refunds.  So for the foreseeable future we are only using the cruise line air options for the more expensive International flights.  

 

Hank

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

16 minutes ago, Hlitner said:

We are in a different world (post covid) so we are only speculating on the future.  But, we have found excellent savings when using Flightease (or the similar EZAIR from Princess) on flights down under.  As we have often posted, the cruise line air deals for International Business Class are often less then half the price of booking independently.  HAL's FlightEase gets access to the coveted "P" fares (the lowest Business Class fares) and other contracted fares.   We have also seen some great fares for Premium Economy (Air New Zealand has decent seats in this class).  As to Economy, you will usually save some money although it sometimes makes sense to book independently since it gives you access to airlines/flights not always discounted by FlightEase.

 

But there is another huge issue.  Any future cruise involving Austalia and New Zealand are going to be questionable because those countries have made it clear they are being very cautious about COVID.  So, I suspect as other countries open up to most tourism there many still be restrictions for the Aus/NZ market.  Booking through FlightEase and using Flex fares gives you a lot of protection if the cruise/trip gets cancelled.  Purchasing air on your own makes it very difficult to get cash refunds.  So for the foreseeable future we are only using the cruise line air options for the more expensive International flights.  

 

Hank

Thank you, Hank, for the very helpful information.

The issue of refunds is one of the reason we're considering purchasing through Flight Ease.

We usually book (partially) with miles but in this case we'd be well short of what we would need for PE so we'll save them for a different trip.

I am optimistic but realistic of the chances that this trip will be a go for us. In any case I'm having a wonderful time learning about the places we may visit.

Carol

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thank you everyone for your information.  I have grandiose ideas of what I'd like to do but the reality is we will probably just fly into Amsterdam a couple of days early and just sightsee there.  Coming back we like to fly into IAD from FLL and will probably look at JetBlue.

When are flights available on Flight Ease?  I'm thinking starting in November?  

 

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I was very skeptical about using flight ease, but did use it on our 2019 Venice to Rome cruise.  It worked out very well, and I would not hesitate to use it again.  But, as I read what you are planning, that may make more sense......  I would however make the comparison before buying tickets.

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

9 minutes ago, I Luv Crusin said:

Thank you everyone for your information.  I have grandiose ideas of what I'd like to do but the reality is we will probably just fly into Amsterdam a couple of days early and just sightsee there.  Coming back we like to fly into IAD from FLL and will probably look at JetBlue.

When are flights available on Flight Ease?  I'm thinking starting in November?  

 

 

You didn't say when your cruise is but generally speaking, flights are available about 330 days in advance of departure.  I did notice that my preferred airline for our trip didn't show on Flight Ease until sometime later, maybe 300 days in advance.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

32 minutes ago, I Luv Crusin said:

When are flights available on Flight Ease?  I'm thinking starting in November?  

When I booked this cruise I asked about FlightEase and was told to check back in December as the flights would probably open up by then.  Also make sure to ask for Flex  Fare so you do not have to pay for your flight until the final payment is due for the cruise.

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

39 minutes ago, Alberta Quilter said:

 

You didn't say when your cruise is but generally speaking, flights are available about 330 days in advance of departure.  I did notice that my preferred airline for our trip didn't show on Flight Ease until sometime later, maybe 300 days in advance.

Flight Ease is usually available 330 days from the end of your cruise, or the date you wish to return if you want to stay at the disembarkation port a few days after the cruise.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

21 hours ago, richwmn said:

Flight Ease is usually available 330 days from the end of your cruise, or the date you wish to return if you want to stay at the disembarkation port a few days after the cruise.

Sorry, I guess I'm expecting all of you to read my mind, like I expect my husband to be a mind reader!

We are doing a TA from Amsterdam October 10, 2021.

 

  • Haha 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
 Share

  • Forum Jump
    • Categories
      • Thank You for 25 Years - Click for Fun Stuff!
      • Forum Assistance
      • ANNOUNCEMENT: Virgin Voyages. It's Go Time
      • New Cruisers
      • Cruise Lines “A – O”
      • Cruise Lines “P – Z”
      • River Cruising
      • ROLL CALLS
      • Digital Photography & Cruise Technology
      • Special Interest Cruising
      • Cruise Discussion Topics
      • UK Cruising
      • Australia & New Zealand Cruisers
      • Canadian Cruisers
      • North American Homeports
      • Ports of Call
      • Cruise Conversations
×
×
  • Create New...