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gordylad

Any advantages when booking Choice air?

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thinking of booking with choice air for our flights but wondering if there are any advantages?

 

thanks

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Cost!  When we've used ChoiceAir for our one-way flights after a transatlantic, the cost was a fraction of booking directly with the airline ($700 instead of $4,400).  We were able to browse the options in advance, choose the flight we wanted, and then choose the seats we wanted after the booking was made.

For regular domestic flights there is probably not so much advantage.

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Posted (edited)

We plan on using it for our 2021 cruise of Spain and Portugal but it is too early to see if we will save anything on business class. For the same itinerary this year I did see business class over $1000pp less than what I could find on my own. We were looking for San Antonio TX to Barcelona and back from Lisbon. Celebrity Air showed prices between $2100 and $2499pp while most on my own were well over $3600pp. I also saw Premium Economy prices around $500 less pp too. My sister, who is a travel agent, and has done over 10 Celebrity cruises told me that Celebrity air has better deals on business class than she can find as a travel agent.

Edited by terrydtx

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I don't know if there is any advantage for domestic flights but there is a price advantage for international flights most of the time. I am paying for 6 tickets in June of 2020. 3 are from Dulles airport and 3 are from Charlotte. I went to various sites and identified the flights I wanted. I made the decision to book the non stop flights available on United and American respectively, even though there were less expensive flights. The advantage with Choice Air is that any time the price goes down, right up until final payment, you can call your travel agent or Choice Air and re book with no penalty. All of the flights went down in price. I am currently paying an average of $1079 for each flight, non stop to Rome and non stop from Barcelona. The airline web sites have never been that low. You have to make the decision that you will check the prices fairly regularly because they have gone back up.

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Just now, terrydtx said:

We plan on using it for our 2021 cruise of Spain and Portugal but it is too early to see if we will save anything on business class. For the same itinerary this year I did see business class over $1000pp less than what I could find on my own. We were looking for San Antonio TX to Barcelona and back from Lisbon. Celebrity Air showed prices between $2100 and $2499pp while most on my own were well over $3600pp. I also saw Premium Economy prices around $500 less pp too.


This is good to know! I will be needing to book flights for my Norwegian Fjords cruise out of Amsterdam in 2021.

 

Question (for anyone): If I use them for air, am I limited to going in and out of Amsterdam? I am thinking of going to London for a few days after the cruise (I want to do the Harry Potter studio tour and a Downton Abbey tour) - would I in that case just need to book the to Amsterdam through this and the return from London (and getting to London) on my own?

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Posted (edited)
6 minutes ago, WrittenOnYourHeart said:


This is good to know! I will be needing to book flights for my Norwegian Fjords cruise out of Amsterdam in 2021.

 

Question (for anyone): If I use them for air, am I limited to going in and out of Amsterdam? I am thinking of going to London for a few days after the cruise (I want to do the Harry Potter studio tour and a Downton Abbey tour) - would I in that case just need to book the to Amsterdam through this and the return from London (and getting to London) on my own?

That would be a good question for either your TA or calling Celebrity direct. I bet they will be able to come up with something to accommodate you. I know when I looked this year, I was able to add a couple of days before and after the cruise without a problem. I didn't try changing the return city, but it might be possible.

Edited by terrydtx

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You can also book now pay later with Celebrity Air.  Only certain airlines participate so it won't be available for all fares.  We just did this for our air for Oct Panama Canal cruise.  Really good price locked in and we don't pay until final cruise payment date.  Fully changeable and cancellable until final payment.   If price goes down we can cancel and re-book...or if we need to cancel cruise we can also cancel air without penalty (up to final payment date).   DH is on wait list for knee surgery which should happen sometime this year....so chance we have to cancel.  

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Posted (edited)

Be sure to do your homework. We have used Choice Air a couple of times when  the pricing/itineraries beat out anything we were able to find independently.  As stated, international flights usually have a greater cost savings. 

For our upcoming flight to Sydney,  we booked through a  fight-only agency (which I don't think I can list here) and must be booked through a TA. They offer special cruise pricing that could not be beat by Celebrity. We were able to get a great itinerary and choose our seats. 

 

Edited by sippican

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Flying to San Juan Sunday with cruiseline air to go on the Summit. So if there is a problem Cruiseline air will get us to t.he Ship if it doesn't go to San Juan. That is one advantage. We were in Japan last year and had to rebook air due to typhoon. Had cruiseline air they took care  of it. People who booked their own were scrambling.

OntarioCruiser

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7 hours ago, WrittenOnYourHeart said:


This is good to know! I will be needing to book flights for my Norwegian Fjords cruise out of Amsterdam in 2021.

 

Question (for anyone): If I use them for air, am I limited to going in and out of Amsterdam? I am thinking of going to London for a few days after the cruise (I want to do the Harry Potter studio tour and a Downton Abbey tour) - would I in that case just need to book the to Amsterdam through this and the return from London (and getting to London) on my own?

 

No you are not limited.  We finished a cruise last year in Southampton and stayed in London for a few days then went to Paris for another few days and flew home from there - no problem at all🙂  Enjoy your trip!

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2 hours ago, 8mma said:

 

No you are not limited.  We finished a cruise last year in Southampton and stayed in London for a few days then went to Paris for another few days and flew home from there - no problem at all🙂  Enjoy your trip!


Fabulous! Thank you!!

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I have not used Choiceair before and have a question.  Our Alaska cruisetour is in August 2021.  How soon can you make reservations?  Do I need to wait until 2021?  I actually tried just to see what airports are available to me, but I wasn’t able to do so and I’m guessing because it’s too early.  Any comments?  Does anyone know if I can get a flight out of San Antonio, Texas to Fairbanks, AK?  TIA

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Flights generally open 330 days prior to departure.  You can search for similar dates in 2020 to get an idea of what might be available next year and a general idea of prices but everything can change.

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12 hours ago, gordylad said:

thinking of booking with choice air for our flights but wondering if there are any advantages?

 

 

Others have done a good job of giving you the potential advantages.  Just be aware that heavily discounted tickets may have more rules and restrictions attached to them that are not apparent at booking.  These could affect things such as rebooking or rerouting if necessary on the day of travel due to a lengthy delay or a cancellation.  Also, more restricted tickets MAY have less availability to select seats in advance, pay to upgrade, or earn miles.   Some have experienced these issues; others have not, it all depends on the particulars of the ticket you get.

 

5 hours ago, Ontario Cruiser said:

 

 

 

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Posted (edited)

In the past, I found that Flights by Celebrity didn’t provide an advantage for main cabin fares on the airlines I prefer (Delta and American Airlines).  Those were non-refundable tickets, purchased prior to the “ book now, pay later” program came into effect.

 

Since the introduction of “book now, pay later”, I have booked premium economy tickets - on a refundable fare - for international travel through Flights by Celebrity.  We saved thousands of dollars on these tickets, when compared to booking directly with the airlines.  During a three month period, I was able to change our reservation a few times in order to capture better flights/fares on different airlines.  

 

The fares do change frequently. Daily checking of flight availability became a necessity for a time until we got tickets for our preferred airline/flights.  Word to the wise: the quote tool on the Flights by Celebrity website doesn’t provide accurate pricing as it is not a real-time price quote.  Whenever I saw a fare on the Quote page that I liked, I would call Flights by Celebrity.  It appeared that 9 times out of 10, the fare I saw on the Quote page was no longer available.  The available fare was usually  higher, sometimes by a lot.  But I did strike gold that one time and was able to purchase tickets, at a great savings, for the flights I wanted.  The next day, the fares were up quite a bit and the low fare we got was never again available.  So, grab a refundable fare when you find it and you can keep looking for a lower fare, if you choose to do so.

 

We were able to select seats by contacting the airlines  upon booking.  Payment for the flights was due at the time of final payment for the cruise. 

Edited by cruisin lady ca

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Posted (edited)
11 minutes ago, cruisin lady ca said:

In the past, I found that Flights by Celebrity didn’t provide an advantage for main cabin fares the airlines I prefer (Delta and American Airlines).  Those tickets were non-refundable and prior to the “ book now, pay later” program cane into effect.

 

Since the introduction of “book now, pay later”, I have booked premium economy tickets - on a refundable fare - for international travel.  We saved thousands of dollars on these tickets, compared to booking directly with the airlines.  We actually changed our flights/airlines a few times to capture better flights/fares.  

 

The fares change frequently so daily checking of availability became a necessity for a time until we got our preferred flights.  Word to the wise: the quote tool on the Flights by Celebrity website doesn’t provide accurate pricing as it is not a real-time price quote.  Whenever I saw a fare on the Quote page that I liked, I would call Flights by Celebrity.  It appeared that 9 times out of 10, the fare I saw on the Quote page was no longer available.  The available fare was usually  higher, sometimes by a lot.  But I did strike gold that one time and was able to purchase tickets, at a great savings, for the flights I wanted.  The next day, the fares were up quite a bit and the low fare we got was never again available.  So, grab a refundable fare when you find it and you can keep looking for a lower fare, if you choose to do so.

 

We were able to select seats by contacting the airlines  upon booking.  Payment for the flights was due at the time of final payment for the cruise. 


I experienced that same issue using Flights by Celebrity on the Celebrity website, but because we sail more frequently on Azamara, noticed Choice Air through the Azamara website provides dynamic pricing.  It takes you to the Cruising Power website, and those prices are up to date.  It still may be worth a call to FBC to check, but IMO you'll at least have more realistic pricing with which to start.

Edited by hiccups

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On 1/7/2020 at 3:52 AM, WrittenOnYourHeart said:


This is good to know! I will be needing to book flights for my Norwegian Fjords cruise out of Amsterdam in 2021.

 

Question (for anyone): If I use them for air, am I limited to going in and out of Amsterdam? I am thinking of going to London for a few days after the cruise (I want to do the Harry Potter studio tour and a Downton Abbey tour) - would I in that case just need to book the to Amsterdam through this and the return from London (and getting to London) on my own?

 

You can book to almost any destination either prior to or after a cruise.    I have done it a number of times.  Not sure of the timing prior to or after a cruise but have book 2-3 weeks after a cruise after spending some time in Italy.

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We went with Choice Air for the first time for our cruise out of FLL this February 2020.  We got a very good price for a RT flight from Newark.  Times were great both ways.

 

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They guarantee to get you to the ship. And they don't charge "deviation fees" like Viking does if you want to fly in late or early or to an additional city. The choose now pay later enabled us to rebook for a lower price before final payment.  The price on our itinerary wasn't better than we could have gotten on our own,  but the benefits made it worth booking with Celebrity. 

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To actually book a flight, you need a cruise reservation, but with or without one you can put in your desired itinerary and see what flights and prices look like. Sometimes changing one airport, for instance gatwick instead of heathrow makes an enormous difference. We might return to the US via New York, Washington, Chicago,Atlanta, Charlotte, Miami, ...You get the idea. We plug in different flight times, cities and dates until we like the fare and the times. Only once have i found a better deal  myself over choiceair.

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