Over the last week I’ve spoken to quite a few people about their run up to Frankfurt and I have to say I’m delighted to hear that the vast majority are progressing well and remarkably do not sound too stress. What I was surprised to hear is that a reasonable number of people have not booked a flight yet.
Being a last minute kind of person I’m comfortable with not doing that when it’s my money but when it’s the company that I work for it worries me a little, after all going to a trade fair is a big ticket item.
So what can you do to make sure no one melts down when you put your expenses in when you get back from FBF10?
A quick look at British Airways, BMI and Lufthansa site shows that prices for the popular departures a Tuesday 5th Morning and early afternoon with inbounds on Saturday 9th in the morning are already getting expensive. I checked the following prices around 17.30 GMT on Thursday 9th September 2010 using www.britishairways.com www.flybmi.com and www.lufthansa.com.
BA prices are up to £375 outbound in the morning as a Club Europe fare and inbound between £269 and £401 again Club Europe.
BMI prices from £115 to £279 but with no flight after 09.45, returns are £269 with only one flight not sold out at 08.25.
Lufthansa show a grid of prices starting at £222, clicking through reveals a range of options on flight time that can see the costs rise to £564.
That’s the best I can do with snipping and as you can see I no graphic artist but I have to admit the different ways of showing prices makes it a little difficult to check and compare. I found a site called Trabber www.trabber.co.uk I could have used skyscanner.net but prefer the layout of Trabber, which seems to make the process of checking and comparing a lot easier. A simple front screen and then a long list of options that you can adjust and book by clicking through to your chosen airlines site.
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As you can see this search is showing 707 results and you can refine and reduce to your heart's content. I didn’t remove the stops options as the flight times are pretty good and I would still make it in to the hall before 4pm. I know that changing isn't the greatest fun but the cost difference is quite something.
While we are talking about cost doesn't it seem time to change the pricing model that airlines use, whether I book early or late I still cost the airline the same amount to fly me to my destination. In fact as a late booker you are paying a higher price and subsidising everyone else who booked early. The only difference is I've kept my money and the airline doesn't get to use it weeks or months before I travel.
If you've found a way to save on your plane tickets do share in the comments box below and of course if you feel moved to feel free to comment.
Daniel is our head of last minute, exhibitions since the early 80’s veteran, trained counsellor and Swiss army knife carrier, loves driving through France because people avoid the motorways, hates paying to cross boarders just because they have a tunnel dug through a mountain. Email him at email@example.com