How to book a trip

Another question I get all the time is “How do I book a trip?”

You’ve got two choices:

  1. Follow the links we provide & book it directly through the OTA (Online Travel Agency) of your choice.
  2. Call your travel agent and give them the dates you found.

If you’re just looking for a flight, click the “flight only” link, choose your desired flight time, and book it directly with the OTA of your choice. (If the fare is no longer available, we provide convenient links that enable you to quickly see what other dates you can find that price. (Click here for more info on finding alternate trip dates.)

If you’re looking for a package, click a “flight plus hotel” link & choose the flight time you want. After that, we sort hotel options by price for you. Simply scroll down until you find a hotel you like and book your trip directly with that OTA.

 

That’s a big but…

This post is to help premium members get the most out of the premium member area.

I can’t tell you how often I get responses from subscribers along the lines of “Wait – I can search for trips during Spring Break?” or “I’m looking to travel in June and most of your emails are for other months.” Or “I’m only interested in domestic flights.”

If you’re a premium subscriber,  my daily emails are just a summary of what I found in the previous day, and having your morning coffee around 8:00 when I send them is a great habit to develop.

BUT… (And this is a big but) 

  1. I have “help” sections that answer 98% of the thousands of questions I’ve already been asked…
  2. If you’re serious about finding a trip, sometimes the daily email might be too late for the absolutely best deals (that probably only had 2 or 4 seats at that price.) You can join my private Facebook group and get real-time updates as I find trips.  (Note that this is not the public group. It’s a private one dedicated just to premium subscribers. You can find the link in any of your “Daily digest” emails.
  3. Daily emails are just a random smattering of trips with no rhyme or reason other than representing the best deals I found from your area the day prior.  If you get to know the ins and out of the website, you’ll find trips you’re looking for a lot faster, and a lot more efficiently.
    1. Looking over spring break? There’s a link for that. (Under Where > When kids are out of school > Spring Break)
    2. Looking in June? There’s a link for that. (Where > By Month > June)
    3. Looking for a warm beach? There’s a link for that (Where > Beaches>)
    4. Tired of the local Chinese/Vietnamese/Thai takeout joints? (Where > Asia)
    5. Looking for extended trips? (How Long > 14+ days)
    6. You get the idea
  4. Here is a helpful video showing you how to interpret every trip I post to the site.
  5. Here is a helpful video showing you how to navigate the website itself.

I have 57 categories to organize the hundreds of trips I’ve found. Even if some of those fares are gone, you’ll get an idea of the kinds of prices you can expect me to find for you in the future.

What is an “OTA?”

Throughout the site, you may see me reference “OTA” quite often. OTA stands for “Online Travel Agency”.

When clicking on the links I provide, you’re taken to the OTA where I found the best fare, and you can book directly through them. You can also call your travel agent and have them book for you.

OTAs most commonly linked to include:

  • Kayak.com
  • Travelocity.com
  • Expedia.com
  • Bookit.com
  • I also link to the airlines directly in some cases (And so does Kayak)

Changing dates I found

What is a JGOOT “Flexibility Score?”

Every post I add to the site has a flexibility score between 1 and 5.

Flexibility scores are designed to help you quickly determine:

  1. How easy it will be to find alternate dates for the fare I found
  2. How quickly you should act on the fares.

Flexibility Score: 1/5
A trip with a flexibility score of 1/5 or 2/5 is most likely a mistake fare.
That means that there is little to no flexibility when it comes to adjusting the dates we found, so you might not want to waste much time looking for different times from what I posted. Since it’s a mistake fare, there are very few seats left at that price so  if the trip interests you, you might want to grab it ASAP.

Flexibility Score: 5/5
Conversely, a trip with a flexibiity score of 4/5 or 5/5 is a result of an airline sale.  As long as the sale is going on, you should be able to change the dates entirely and still find alternate dates similar to that price.  The higher the score, the less likely that fare is to disappear on you, and even if it does – you can probably find other dates at that price (until whenever the airline sale ends)

Click here for more details about adjusting dates from the dates I share on the site.

Questions? Please feel free to comment below.