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Life Lessons of a Military Wife (overseas in Europe!): Best Seats and Best Airfare All Around

Life Lessons of a Military Wife (overseas in Europe!)

My goal here is to make your life easier, especially those who are in the unique situation of being a military spouse. Yes...I've been around...but in a good way...and hopefully can share those tips, tricks and shortcuts with you too. I've been on this military bus for over 40 years now. My goals in life are to have a well-run home, few money worries, well adjusted children, money socked away and whatever happiness I can scoop out of life.

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After life as an Army brat, being in the Army myself and marrying a soldier, I can honestly say I have a bucket full of life lessons I can share to help you make your everyday life easier and enlightening. Don't waste your time making unnecessary mistakes and benefit from others who have come before you on your journey through life.

Friday, September 14, 2007

Best Seats and Best Airfare All Around


I don't have to fly too often, but when I do, I like to try to get the best fare and the best seat! In the past, I used to spend hours on the internet, looking at all the reservation sites and hoping I got the best deal after I checked them all...or thought I did. I would also randomly pick a seat...always an aisle seat, and hope it was okay. Well, things are different now. I've got to fly to Chicago in a few weeks, and this time I actually used more of my brain and less of my fingers...and time...finding the right fit.

You're definitely going to want to check what the fares typically are to where you are going. The best place to get that done is

  • Farecast - See if the lowest fare is dropping or rising over the next seven days. You'll also get to see what the fare has been in the last 90 days.
  • Check Fare Compare - If you want to compare the different airlines, alternate destination airports and dates. All in one glance, this is your next best bet.
  • Your next step should be Kayak - This site compares 100+ travel sites and their fares. You can't purchase the tickets here, but you can get the price and then the contact information for travel agencies or the airline directly.
  • I typically take this next step, although it can be tedious. Many airlines have advertised cheap specials, but only on their websites! I will go to my local airport's website, see what airlines fly to my destination city, and then visit the airlines' sites, one by one. Again, this is tedious, but I once found an airline, that does mostly cargo flights but did have one flight a week to my destination. I would've never known this had I not looked!
  • If you want to look even deeper, check out air travel consolidators. Just google it, and you'll see quite a few listed. They purchase blocks of seats, and in the old days, before all these cool websites, you could always find a better deal through them...it's worth a quick look.
  • If there's an airline you regularly fly, get on their email list. Southwest is notorious for sending out deals...sometimes only good for hours...to their subscribers.
Now that you've got your flight and price picked out, you're gonna need a seat. I don't think I have to harp on the possibilities of seating partners...I really don't...we've all been there, right? So, let's go on to a site that will help you find the best seat to park your backside. The last time I flew, I was able to find such a nice seat with lots of legroom in an exit row.

  • Visit Seat Guru to find that perfect seat! Here you can see tons of uploaded schematics of different airlines and their planes and find just the right seat...and the ones to stay away from.
All in all, a happy day! I was able to find a nice ticket for right around $100 for my next trip to Chicago...not bad at all! Now if only someone could invent a way to get to your destination without the hassle of actually getting up at oh dark thirty, driving to the airport, dealing with airport security and everything else at the airport AND the stress of flying...well, I guess that's something for the next century...but something I can still dream about!

What are your tips?

Read this article and other travel articles at Travelminx's Carnival of Travel #8.

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