by -
3 Comments

Travelocity sent out an email yesterday that included a $40 off $100 coupon for a booking that is made on their mobile app that didn’t have any other than certain brand restrictions.

Travelocity $40 Off $100

As I wrote last year (access here), Travelocity is now merely a skin for Expedia which handles all the bookings on its behalf. The promotions that these companies offer are separate, however. [click to continue...]

by -
3 Comments

Travelocity is giving up and becomes just a skin of Expedia starting in sometime 2014. Expedia will start taking care of reservations, ticket issuance, customer service etc. on behalf of Travelocity that merely becomes a front end “brand”.

travelocity-expedia

Travelocity admits that it has fallen behind on search capability in recent years and this deal with Expedia helps it to concentrate merely on “marketing and promotions” according to the CEO. [click to continue...]

by -
6 Comments

There seems to be two schools when it comes to buying airlines tickets; one group prefer always booking using the airline’s own websites and the other uses travel agents like Expedia.

expedia-grid

I belong to the latter group and here is why:

1. Easier to compare prices among several airlines.

2. Agents are often able to offer more combinations than airlines.

3. You can easily ticket from different country than where your credit card is issued.

4. No need to present a credit card at check in.

5. I can get some cash back for my purchase.

6. I can choose the country where the ticket is issued.

7. I don’t have to go through the process of declining all the “extras” that the airlines are trying to sell in addition to the air transport.

8. The agent, the ticketing carrier or the operating carrier can fix and help in case that there are problems along the way.

9. Automated ticketing. Some carriers still queue some reservations for manual review before the electronic ticket is issued.

There also some drawbacks to consider as well:

1. The agent should do all the changes before the travel begins.

2. There could be a charge for using the agent’s services.

3. Sometimes it is difficult to pull up the exact fare rules.

Conclusion:

Unlike with the hotels, I rarely see any benefit of booking directly with the airline compared to online travel agents like Expedia. I prefer having a greater number of options

by -
4 Comments

This deal pops up every now and then on various websites like Groupon etc. Normally “mommy” bloggers are pushing it as a great way to save money to generate cash through their affiliate links. This is similar to the Groupon’s Airfastticket (not) deals in Europe.

wagjag-travelocity

You can buy $100 Travelocity Incentives gift card (note that this CANNOT be used at Travelocity) for $50 using one of the numerous daily deal sites. The current deal is that you need to book on www.travelocityincentives.com a hotel for two nights and the total needs to be $250.

  • Expires March 31, 2013
  • Limit 1 voucher per reservation, may buy up to 10 vouchers
  • Must be booked at www.travelocityincentives.com
  • Minimum pre-tax package purchase of $250 required
  • 2-night minimum reservation required
  • No additional charges. No cash value. No cash back

The key thing here is to realize that the prices that you can find on Travelocity Incentives website are not always competitive. Also, booking a prepaid stay on the website doesn’t earn you points or stay credits on most hotel programs. Some of them do, however, extend the elite benefits, regardless of the booking channel used, like Hyatt does.

I am going to be back in Bangkok early next week and was looking at the hotels there. I have always wanted to try the new Sofitel hotel in Sukhumvit.

travelocity-incentives-sofitel

The price that you can get on Travelocity Incentives is the same as on Sofitel’s own website. So, you could save $50 on a two night stay. Ok. Decent.

sofitel-bangkok

Here’s another example for Yangon for the 8th of July for two nights. The price on Travelocity Incentives is $392.

travelocity-incentives-yangon

And on Agoda $356 + 10% service charge. The prices are thus identical.

booking-com-yangon

Conclusion

I don’t believe that these “voucher” deals are real DEALS. The real deals are discounted flash sales that all the hotel chains are offering once in a while, or using a discount codes that you are eligible for to bring the price down.  These Travelocity Incentives vouchers offer at most 20% discount if the cost of your stay is exactly $250.