In response to a comment on Fodor's “I only fly when I can get a combo of a cheap price + good routing and usually manage to have a fine experience”, I think a posting on cheap price tickets is in order.
At Orbitz (www.orbitz.com), I just checked the price of tickets for travel from Detroit to Las Vegas on July 9th, 2010 with a return on July 12th , 2010.
Please be aware that airline fares change by the second online but here is what I discovered.
On Spirit Airlines I can take a Non Stop 4 hours and 20 minute flight for $376.00. A cheaper ticket on Air Tran with a connection in Atlanta would cost me $341 but takes 7 hours and 24 minutes to get to Las Vegas. A $35 savings.
However, is it really the best price?
The Air Tran flight has a one hour connection in Atlanta which to me is cutting it close for traveling in and out of the world's busiest airport, Atlanta Hartsfield. If you miss your original connection, it can now take you up to 8 hours and 50 minutes to get to Las Vegas.
“I feel so fat but at least I’m rich!”
So for $35 less, I guess you are willing to possibly miss out on another 4 hours and 30 minutes of fun in Sin City. I'll try to save some beer for you but I ain't making no promises.
While waiting in Atlanta for your connecting flight, you drop about $10 on some food and a drink. Now the difference in getting out to Las Vegas is about $25.
Eventually, you make it out to Las Vegas. Apparently you and “Lady Luck” have a misconnection like you did in Atlanta. A few days later, with no “Benjamins” you barely escape “The Strip”, just the shirt on your back.
It is Air Tran back to Detroit, for you.
Will you spend another $10 on food? The difference in ticket prices is now $15.
From leaving Las Vegas it will take you a minimum of 9 hours and 37 minutes to get back to Detroit.
Remember, these times are based on scheduled flight times and do not account for weather, maintenance or air traffic control delays.
The total flight time for a Non Stop on Spirit from Las Vegas to Detroit is 3 hours and 45 minutes. You will still be waiting for your connecting flight in Atlanta while I am sharing my huge Vegas winnings with friends and family back in Detroit.
In the best scenario, round trip Detroit to Las Vegas on the cheaper ticket will take you about 17 hours compared to 8 hours on a Non Stop flight. So, not taking into consideration money spent while waiting for your connecting flights, is saving $3.88 per hour ($35) worth the extra 9 hours of your time?
I would hope your time along with the convenience and opportunity to travel stress free is worth more than $3.88 per hour.
With airport purchases ($5 Starbucks, $4 Water, $8 Meal), the difference in your total trip cost (what you paid for your ticket) can be less than $15.
For savvy travelers like “usernameistaken on Fodor’s” this situation requires patience and the right attitude to be manageable. Only at best would the outcome be a pleasant airline experience.
“Damn you, Northwest, I am never flying this f’ng airline again"
Yes, it may cost you $3.88 or as little as $1.67 per hour more with all things considered for a round trip ticket from Detroit to Las Vegas. However, aren't you the same person that pays $32 for a gallon of Starbucks coffee?
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