“No way these fares are real.”

Whether via email, public comments, a personal conversation, or comments on Facebook or my blog, I get the exact same objection multiple times a day.

Here is my response to a “No way.  I checked and it’s not on sale.” public comment on Facebook.

 

Some other favorites:

“I just got back from Hawaii and paid over $1500, so I KNOW FOR A FACT this can’t be true.” 

“I used to be a travel agent. These prices are LIES!” (oh… the irony.)

“How can it be cheaper to fly to HAWAII than what I paid to go to Omaha?” 


Find the deals first.

Go there when you can work your schedule around them.

Just like having car insurance for when you drive, plan ahead and set up a backup plan for when you don’t have the flexibility and advance notice to find a good deal.

That’s The JGOOT Way.

Don’t want to read a bunch of travel tips from a geeky ex-Google author about how to find these kinds of prices?  We’ll do it for you for as little as $8 a month. More details here.

–Joel

Don’t look for deals on cruises. Do this instead:

Here is my response whenever I get asked if I have deals on cruises. 

Thanks for reaching out.  I solely focus on flights for one reason:

You can get a FREE cruise, and it doesn’t much matter if that locks you into specific dates that require you to pay $500 or $600 per person to fly there.

Instead, one of our 44 categories of trips is “Cruises”. Our cruise category has flights to cruise ports when we find them at 50% to 90% below normal prices.  Then, we include links to cruises that depart during those times.

By finding a $50 flight to a cruise port that normally costs $500 or $600, a family of 5 can save $2500 on their flights alone. (Even a FREE cruise that requires you to pay $500 per person to fly there would be hard to make up for compared to finding $50 flights to the same cruise ship.)

Any time you’d like choose from 20 times more travel deals than what you get as a free subscriber, our premium service starts as low as $8/month. You can try it risk-free for 30 days at JGOOT.com/upgrade

Happy travels!

–Joel

PS – The same goes for a friend’s free timeshare, and all-inclusive resorts. A good deal doesn’t mean much if you’re tied to specific dates, don’t have a backup plan, and can’t find affordable flights to get there.

Bad news & good News

If you’re reading this, it’s probably because you want to go somewhere specific, have shopped that trip to death, couldn’t find anything affordable and emailed me hoping I had a last minute trick up my sleeve.
The bad news is that I’m not a travel agent and when it comes to going to specific places at specific times – you’ve got better odds buying lottery tickets than to get a good deal shopping for a specific trip “the traditional way.” But I’ve got good news!
If all you want to do is go to a specific place, you don’t need anything I have to offer. This video will save you a ton of money. 
Can’t view the above video? Click here.
Need to go to that specific place at a specific time? If you have enough advance notice, try this even cooler trick. (Again – no charge for this advice.)
Either way – if all you need is a trip to a specific place you don’t need to pay for my services.
When you’re ready to be INSPIRED to travel by finding ridiculously cheap round-trip flights:
  • to any of the 48 states where you can visit friends or family for under $100 (sometimes as low as $29 round-trip)
  • to any of the hundreds of exotic destinations with white-sand beaches in Mexico/Caribbean (and often Hawaii) that are $100 to $400…
  • to any of the beautiful countries in Europe, Asia, or South America between $200 and $600…
  • to Africa or Australia are $400 to $1000 round-trip…
  • AND have a bullet-proof backup plan for any time prices are higher than that…
…I’d love for JGOOT to be your muse.
But… If you don’t mind me giving you one last travel tip:
If you’re thinking about trying my premium trip alert service out, don’t try and wait for the perfect time. 
The risk of missing out on a perfect trip that will save you $3000 by booking it 6 or 8 months in advance is far greater than the $24 or $32 you’ll save by waiting until you’re ready to plan your next trip.  Don’t take it from me. Take it from the thousands of subscribers who have asked me for help after it’s too late.
Either way, I hope this post will help you to start traveling a little more affordably.
Happy travels!
–Joel

Jerry West’s trick to getting business class flights for 1/2 to 1/3 of what people paid for their coach seat

Jerry West is a master negotiator, seasoned Europe traveler, and JGOOT premium subscriber. In this video, we chat about how he put a combination of his JGOOT subscription and his negotiation skills to work to score two different business class flights for less than what most people on the same plane paid for their coach seats.

Warning: He cusses twice in this video but once doesn’t really count since it was a mispronunciation of “Phuket.”

Here are some bullet points from our conversation:

  • How he found $400ish tickets to Thailand when most sites were charging $2300 to $4000.
  • How much he HATED Bangkok.
  • How much he LOVED Phuket (which is a $30 to $100 flight from Bangkok)
  • How little we Westerners know about “spicy” food and what it can do to the bowel system.
  • How he found $298 tickets to Paris and a $62 flight to Belgium when most sites were charging $1200 to Belgium.
  • How he got TWO different business class flights for about 1/3 of what most people paid for their coach seat.
  • How AWESOME airport lounges are in Asia compared to anywhere else.
  • Hanging out in a bar. On a plane. At 35,000 feet.
  • Amazingly cheap (but really good) food, even better prices on lodging, and three foot massages a day.
  • How Jerry can help online business owners get more free traffic to their website, AND get more out of their site traffic (visit JerryWest.com)

If you are unable to watch the above video, you can also find it on our Youtube channel.

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Want to travel like Jerry travels, and pay the prices Jerry pays?
Give JGOOT a try risk-free for 30 days.

While supplies last:
Use discount code “Phuket” at checkout and I’ll throw in a $100 travel savings card.
(If discount code no longer works, I’ve run out of cards.)

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“I’ll have a cheeseburger with no cheese”

“I’ll have a cheeseburger with no cheese.”

If you were sitting next to someone who ordered that, wouldn’t you feel COMPELLED to tell them they’re paying too much?

Sadly, I have that same feeling several dozen times a week.  Just this morning, I woke up to the following 3 requests (and the fares I find won’t help a single one of them):

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

There are two simple rules to The JGOOT Way of travel:

  1. Look every day for good travel deals and go there whenever you can.
  2. Have a backup plan for your “specific time/specific place” travels (which will almost always cost 3 to 5 times as much as it should – unless you have a backup plan in place).

I can’t help you with plans to specific places at specific times other than encouraging you to set up a backup plan. BUT…

  • Want help finding trips that are so affordable – they’re worth scheduling vacation time around?
  • Want to get alerts of flights where you can visit friends or family for less than it would cost to drive there?
  • Want to invite friends or family to fly in and hang out for less than what it costs to hire a babysitter?
  • I’ll be your Huckleberry.

Click here & try my trip-alert service risk-free for 30 days. It won’t get you to that wedding or funeral for any less money, but one thing is for sure – you’ll be able to Just Get Out Of Town for less than you ever thought possible.

PS – As I was writing this post, I got yet another request:

 

 

 

 

 

There is no better way to GUARANTEE paying too much than to paint yourself into a corner by going to a specific place at a specific time.

Fortunately, Jack and Michael have enough time to put this free quick-start guide into action. Unfortunately, it’s too late for “The JGOOT Way” of travel to do anything for Lisa & Dion

Other related posts:

Meet Dante – Travel App Expert

Dante in the video below is pretty well-traveled.

For years, he’s used the Hopper app, Airfare Watchdog, Travelzoo, Kayak Explorer, Google’s Fare Watcher, etc.

When he found out I was at a travel expo in his area, he drove an hour to grill me to find out how I find so many good deals so often. I’ll tell you the same thing I told him:

There is no need to join our premium service if you enjoy spending the several hours per day required to hunt them down.

Your free apps will find all of the same deals we find as long as you do one simple thing:

Set up your apps to watch for at least a few dozen destinations you’d consider going to – and analyze the results every day.

    • Not when you’re ready…
    • Not when it’s in the budget…
    • Every. Single. Day.

Why every day? Because the best deals aren’t last-minute fares, or even 30 to 60 days in advance. They’re often MONTHS before the actual travel dates, and they usually only last a few days.  Other than occasional dumb luck, the odds of a decent price being available when you get around to looking for that same trip are slim-to-none.

So there you have it.

If you want to find all of the same deals my team and I find, there is no need to upgrade to our paid trip alert service.  Pick a free app. ANY free app – and use it diligently every day whether you’re planning a trip or not.

Spend an hour or two a day analyzing what your free app sends you and you’ll be shocked at how quickly you start;

  • visiting more friends & family,
  • flying more friends & family in to visit you,
  • taking the same vacations you were planning on taking anyway, but paying a LOT less.
  • Spending the savings on more trips, or doing more cool stuff on your vacations.

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Don’t want to put in the hour or two a day to find these deals & just review 4 or 5 of my daily personal picks over your morning coffee?
Visit JGOOT.com/upgrade and use discount code “NoMoreApps”
I’ll personally pay for the first 90 days of your quarterly subscription, or I’ll knock $47 off any other subscription plan.
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“A Star Is Born” and and unexpected reaction

A Star Is Born

Photo Credit: Amazon Movies

Last night, in hopes of cramming one last Oscar nominated movie in before tonight’s award ceremony, my lovely wife Michelle rented “A Star Is Born” for us to watch.

After a long day skiing (and a 4 hour drive back due to a 2-hour road closure on I-70), I wasn’t expecting to be able to stay awake, but man was I wrong.  I was either on the edge of my seat, cheering, or sobbing my eyes out throughout the entire movie.

Not only that, but we watched every “bonus scene/video” possible, and THEN we decided to watch it again.

I think the pivotal moment in the movie was how Jack surprised Ally with a “once in a lifetime opportunity” – knowing she didn’t think she was ready (but he knew she was).

And She F**king Nailed It! (I’d include the clip, but it’s 1000 times better if you watch how they got there in the movie.)

Michelle was surprised at why this movie touched me so much, and quite frankly, so am I.  I think the biggest reason is because of where I am now, and where I’ve been in my life.  More specifically – the opportunities I’ve seized, and the opportunities I have let slip by because of being caught up in the grind of daily life.

It wasn’t until my mid-40’s that I discovered travel as a way to grow…
to find perspective…
to unplug from work…
to plug in with my family…
to find myself…
to visit more friends and family…
to have more friends & family visit me…
to give my family gifts that won’t start collecting dust two weeks after I give it to them…

Ever since that discovery, I’ve been making up for lost time. Even when I can’t travel myself, I look for travel deals that I hope one of my friends or family members can take advantage of.  (And as long as you’re reading this blog, I’m not going to let the opportunity slip by to inspire you to visit more friends, family, or new places either.)

If you want to start visiting more friends, more family, and more new places, there is nothing more powerful than doing this one simple thing:

Whether you’re planning a trip or not, simply watch for opportunities to JGOOT (Just Get Out Of Town) every day.
  • If you’re subscribed to my paid trip-alert service, that’s as easy as opening my trip alerts every day.  (Don’t wait until you’re ready. Open them every day.)
  • If you’re not subscribed, here are a TON of free tips showing you how to find unbelievable trips yourself. (No, not last minute, not redeye flights, not standby flights, and unless absolutely necessary, not even using points. Just travel deals that are so low – you can’t help but consider getting out of town.)
Sound like too much work? No problem, but it sure would be unfortunate if the exact same Summer trip you’ll end up paying $400 per-person for  – could have been snatched up 5 months in advance for $47 during a 48-hour flash sale.  (Especially if you’ve got a family of 6.)

Happy travels!

Joel

 

Abe Lincoln, sharpening axes, chopping down trees, and traveling for pennies on the dollar

We all like to think we’re good at finding deals when it comes to travel. (And most of us are.)

But The JGOOT Way of travel isn’t about finding “good” deals…

Anyone can find a good deal…

The JGOOT Way is about finding deals so freakin’ cheap – the stories from the price you paid eclipse the stories from the trip itself.

Stories like when you’re going through a divorce, you’re forced to live on $2000 a month, and you to take your kids on your first vacation with just the three of you. How? By finding $41 round-trip flights to a cruise-port that perfectly fits with their days off of school. Since it was Fall Break (and cruises are dirt-cheap) you hopped on an all-inclusive 5-night cruise for less than what you would have spent taking them to the five obligatory bowling and bouncy-house parties that were planned that week. 

Stories like when you’re dating a girl, and it’s getting serious (but not THAT serious yet). You stumble across $29 round-trip flights to her home-town in two months. Together, you laugh about the rumors flying about why you flew home to meet her friends & family.

Stories you get to tell your kids (and future grandkids) about how you woo’ed that same girl by taking her on a vacation over Thanksgiving at a fancy all-inclusive resort. (Not because you were Mr. Money-bags, but because you found $110 round-trip flights to Cabo, and you booked an all-inclusive resort that got a 65% discount by booking it at the same time you booked your flight.)

I don’t care how good you are at finding “good deals” you are… It’s not physically possible to find a travel deal that came-and-went when you weren’t looking.  Other than occasional dumb-luck, the ONLY way to find a price so cheap you get to brag about it for the rest of your life is to do one simple thing:

Look.

Every.

Day.

I know, I know – You’re probably expecting this blog post to be a build-up to convince you to pay $97 per year to subscribe to my daily trip-alert service, but…

Screw that. I’m not even going to include a link.

Here’s a free tip on how you can do all of the above yourself for free:

Just promise me you’ll stop thinking “I’ll get around to that when I’m ready to plan my next trip“.

That’s the reason people think travel is so expensive…

That’s the reason I had to hire an assistant just to tell over 100 people a week that my service won’t be of any use to them this time around, and that there is no way around them having to pay $650 per person for what would have been $124 flights had they started looking two or three months earlier.

Just trust me…

This isn’t a pitch for my paid service.

It IS a pitch to convince you to stop looking for travel deals the way you always have done it.

Whether you’re planning a trip or not, set up some fare watches today using the free tip in the video above.

Look at those prices every day and I promise you one thing;  There will come a day when the price you find is so low – you simply won’t be able to resist the temptation to just get out of town.

Exploiting the airline industry’s “Achilles Heel”

Whether dealing with discount airlines, or one of the big three – all airlines use extremely expensive software and algorithms to extract every dollar possible out of every seat on every one of their planes.

But much like Achilles’ heel, even the millions of dollars airlines put into predicting how much customers will pay for a seat on their planes, they don’t always get it right.

About .1% of the time, the airlines get their “supply and demand” charts wrong and they find themselves in a bind. As early as 10 months before a flight, if they don’t have at least 15% of their seats booked, they realize they’re not on-pace to fill enough seats on the plane.

The way they fix that problem and get to their 15% target? They drastically slash prices on a handful of seats. Since staying on pace to fill as many seats as possible is EXTREMELY important to the airlines, these price slashes have to be enough to get someone’s attention so they can fill those seats in a hurry.

You never know when or where those price-cuts will happen, but one thing is for sure… They disappear FAST, and as soon as they do, the airlines go back to charging what they know passengers will pay.

Want to spend less than everyone else on the same plane as you?

Watch every day and look for the .1% of seats in planes that are 70% to 90% below normal prices.

Not when you get around to it…

Not 1 or 2 months before you’re ready to plan a trip…

Every. Day.

Unbelievably good deals to destinations all around the world are out there every day, and all you have to do is watch for them.

Don’t want to look every day?

That’s fine, but Murphy’s law says that perfect trip 6 months from now will pop up in the next week or two, and when you get around to planning for it in 3 or 4 months – you’ll probably pay double to triple than what you could have paid if you watched for that trip every day.

Don’t think .1% gives you enough options to choose from?

Think about this:

  • If the average international airport flies to 700 destinations around the world…
  • If they have an average of 4 flights to those destinations per day…
  • If there are 365 days in the year…
  • If there are an average of 250 seats on those planes…
  • That gives you 204,000,000 options to choose from. (700 * 4 * 365 * 250)
  • If you only took flights that were among the cheapest .1% of those 204,000,000 choices, you’d have 204,000 options to choose from (per year).
  • With that many options it’s virtually impossible not to find something that can work with your schedule.
  • Besides, how many trips do you need to take a year?

Is “The JGOOT Way” perfect?

No. 

Will “The JGOOT Way” get you to exactly where you want to go, when you want to get there?

Absolutely not. 

Will it allow you to take an annual vacation or two to amazing destinations at a price YOU are willing to pay (vs what the airlines (and hotels) are charging everyone else who doesn’t know any better?)

Hell yes.

Want someone else to look every day so you don’t have to? Try my trip alert service for a buck.

 

 

 

 

Kids fly free on Frontier!

I love it when this awesome community of JGOOT travelers helps each other out…

The Points Guy posted this news, and one of my savviest JGOOT subscribers – Brooke Merkle – shared the details with me so I could get the word out. Thanks Brooke!

I won’t steal TPG’s thunder, so you can read his review (and fine print) here, but if you’ve got kids, have flexibility on days you can travel (like this Summer), and don’t mind being on a budget airline, it can be a great deal (especially if you can find those occasional $29 round-trip flash-sales Frontier is so famous for.)

Happy Travels!

–Joel

Photo Credit: FlyFrontier.com

Photo Credit: FlyFrontier.com

Seriously???

I’m in a few Facebook travel groups, and one of them in particular is an especially active one. The average post gets over 20 replies, but one in particular got over 100 replies in the first hour, and is up to over 350 comments.

The post was “How do you guys travel so much?”  and all of the replies had one common theme; “You have to make travel a priority.

Although I agree that the first step in traveling more is making it a priority, I couldn’t disagree more with HOW these people were making travel a priority.  I can’t tell you how many responses utterly shocked me:

 

Other shocking responses:

  • Eat Ramen every day, and put the savings towards a travel fund.
  • Sell your car, take the bus and apply what you save on payments and insurance towards travel.

Seriously???  If you’re needing to take the bus, work a second job, or eat crappy food just so you can afford to travel – you’re doing it all wrong.

Why not just find a way to spend less on travel?  

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Want a reliable system that can allow you to travel for as little as five cents on the dollar every time you travel?
Try “The JGOOT Way” out for 30 days for a dollar.
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From one of the greats

Photo Credit: Wikipedia

Wayne Gretzky is among the greatest hockey players in history.

When asked what he attributes to his success he quoted a simple lesson his Dad gave him: “Skate to where the puck is going, not to where it has been.

Want to spend so little, your friends don’t even believe you when you tell them what you paid for your vacation?  

Stop “chasing the puck” by trying to go to a specific place at a specific time. Instead, find the 1% of trips that are 75% to 90% below market value, and go there.

They’re out there every day. But if you’re not watching for them – they’ll pass right by and someone else will get them.

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Want to use a service that will tell you where the puck will be every single day?
Try our fare-finder service for a dollar.
We’ll share the most affordable 1% of trips on the internet.
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Your “Travel More” New Year Resolution

So you want to travel more, huh?

Let’s get you started on your first step toward actually getting to your dream destination affordably within the next year, shall we? Below is a blog post (And video if you prefer not to read) with my BIGGEST secret to finding the deals I find: Watching every day (whether I’m planning a trip or not.)

  • Step 1: Think of a destination that is on your bucket list
  • Step 2: Go to a site called AirfareWatchdog.com, and search for their “fare alerts” feature.
  • Step 3: Enter your home airport and then enter as many destinations as you can think of on your bucket list. (If there is more than one airport to that destination, go ahead and enter all of them.)
  • Have friends & family around the country? Now, start a search for every one of their airports too.

Don’t be shy about this! The more destinations you watch, the sooner you’ll stumble across a deal that you can’t afford not to go on.

Don’t worry – Manhy of your alerts will be expensive at first, but have faith – they always go down. Always.

You just have to be watching for when they do (and guess what; If you followed steps 1-3 above, now you are! All you have to do is take about 30 seconds to check each subject line of what they send every day.)

Remember – you’re not just looking for a good deal. You’re waiting for a deal so amazing – you think it’s a mistake. (It won’t be. It’s just a pricing anomaly that usually only lasts a day or two, and if you grab it – it can save you hundreds, if not thousands more than what everyone else on the plane will be paying a month or two later.)

Happy travels!

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Don’t want to weed through a bunch of emails every day to find the best deals?
We analyze over 700 destinations per day from your home airport, and only send you the best 4 or 5 deals we found.
That way, you can review the best deals on the internet over your morning coffee.
Try it out for a buck!
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Ummmmm… Hell no.

[TL;DR? Watch a video at the bottom of this post instead.]

I bargained with my sophomore son and told him if he took a free ACT practice test on Friday, he could take a friend snowboarding today.

I was going to go boarding today too, but it was NEGATIVE TEN DEGREES outside, and was only going to get up to a high of 2.  Ummmm… Hell no.

Unlike the out-of-state visitors who all paid thousands of dollars to ski in Colorado during the second-most crowded week of the year – One of the nice things about living just over an hour from the slopes is that you can occasionally say “no thanks” if conditions aren’t absolutely perfect.

Instead, you can grab your laptop, a hot coffee, and work by a warm fire while your kids freeze their butts off on the slopes.

Wanna know a secret?

Traveling for pennies on the dollar works the exact same way.  Unlike the suckers who decide to look for a travel deal every once in a blue moon and settle on somewhere in Mexico (again) because that’s the only destination where they could find a flight for under $400, you can be a lot more picky about the trips you take and the prices you pay.

  • Mexico? Not unless it’s under $150.
  • Europe?  Not unless we can spend less than $400 per person AND get a week of lodging included.
  • What? $29 flights to my Alma Mater for a big game? Let’s grab some friends & go!

But there is a catch…

Since the majority of those fares only last days (if not hours), you HAVE to watch for them every day.

The best way to do that for free?  Airfare Watchdog. Simply enter as many destinations as you want to go to, and they’ll send you the best price they can find to that destination. Every day.

99% of the time, you’ll say “no thanks” and go on with your day.  But about 1 in 100 times the fare will be so low – you’ll think “Ummm… OK!!!” – and you’ll snatch the fare up knowing it will likely be the cheapest seat on the plane.  (The best part? These trips are often months in advance so you can easily work your schedule around them.)

Try it & see for yourself. For your convenience, here’s a link to their free site.

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Have more than a few places you’d be willing to travel to for the right price?
Every trip we send to our subscribers is at “Ummmm… OK!!!” prices that are virtually guaranteed to be the cheapest seats on the plane.

Right now, you can check out my premium trip-alert service for 30 days, for a dollar.
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Want more free videos?
Follow my Facebook page.
 

Reach out and touch someone

.
In the late 70’s – long-distance calling was extremely expensive ($.10 to $.25 per minute), rates were very confusing, and most people only called for really special occasions. So AT&T launched a campaign about how their new calling plans allowed you to “reach out and touch someone” for $.02 to $.10 per minute and forever changed how people treated long-distance calling.

Now, nearly 50 years later, at $.10 to $.25 per mile, most people think flying is too expensive, meaning traveling across the country to visit a friend or loved one “just to say hi” is reserved for special occasions only.

Just like AT&T revolutionized the way people stayed in touch 50 years ago, “The JGOOT Way” is changing the way friends & family stay in touch today.

Every week, I share a few dozen different flights with my premium subscribers that are between $.02 and $.05 per mile.  That’s about 1/4 of what most people pay to fly, 1/10th of what most people pay to drive, and believe it or not – a better value than what you would pay when using frequent flyer points. (Here is an article describing that math.)

As a JGOOT premium subscriber, any time you see a trip alert in a city where you know someone, you can either:

  • Have one-click access to the flights I found so you can go visit them
  • Use my “reverse search” link & fly them out come visit you.
  • (Fares I find in the Domestic US are rarely over $100, and as low as $29 round-trip, so there is rarely an excuse for not “reaching out and touching someone” you care about.

Don’t want to pay $.26 per day to have me find those deals for you? No problem. Here is a post on how you can regularly find $.02 to $.05 per mile flights yourself for free.

Just for fun, here are a couple more AT&T commercials: