So now convinced to go around the world and knowing where I want to go, how do I now book my flights?
My experience has provided me many options. There’s a story behind each one, which if you don’t mind I’d like to share to see if this option is for you. This is Part 3. You can find Part 1 here, which focuses on buying a Round the World ticket via SkyTeam in the Philippines (spoiler alert: not recommended) and Part 2 here, which is buying a Round the World ticket via Star Alliance (spoiler alert: great, but expensive)
If you want to know my recommendation, just jump to the end of this series.
So Star Alliance looked good, with a great site, and an immediate price quote, but also looked expensive! After all Singapore Airlines is part of the list, as well as other premium airlines.
Is there a cheaper option?
ATTEMPT #3 – AirTreks
I discovered AirTreks as I continued to do google searches for Round The World Trips. I saw it mentioned in a lot of forums and blogs, and figured I’d check it out. Airtreks seems to be a US Based company and it’s been featured in Yahoo, BBC News, and National Geographic.
AirTreks seems well praised! This was interesting.
So I tried their online tool, and it seems quite user friendly too! No flash, just a simple site that worked fast and worked quick.
At the end you submit your itinerary. Within a few minutes, I got an estimate price range! I tried another route, and it sent an estimated price range quickly too!
I picked the route I liked best, and then answered a few of their follow-up questions. I got an official quotation pretty quickly, even showing me which airlines would work.
And best of all… the quotation was MUCH CHEAPER than Star Alliance!!! Oh wow this is great! This seemed to be exactly what I was looking for!
So naturally, I had a few more questions, which I sent via email. Guess what? Hardly a few minutes had passed when I just sent that email, I received a call from the US on my phone... it was a guy named Chris from AirTreks! He said it’ll be faster if we talk so he decided to call me long distance from the US to the Philippines.
WOW. That’s good customer service. Major plus points for you.
So we talked about and he answered a lot of my questions.
- Do we have options for routes? Answer: YES.
- Can we look at options for routes now? Answer: YES but we need to pay and book for the flights once we’ve finalized within 24 hours or rates will change again.
Mucho mucho helpful indeed. It’s refreshing to hear a knowledgable voice throughout this whole process.
And so I gathered I’d need to block off a day to finalize the flights and be ready to pay immediately. Sounds reasonable and sounds good to me.
So in summary, here’s what we have:
Booking via AirTreks
- Very simple and feature packed website to create an itinerary (fast & responsive)
- Itinerary will be given an estimated price RANGE immediately once you finish your itinerary. (the Star Alliance gave a price, not a range)
- Once you get an estimate and reply to their questions, you’ll get an estimated PRICE with the possible airlines.
- The Estimated Price is MUCH CHEAPER than Star Alliance and Skyteam.
- Very impressed that they called me to make the process faster
- When you’re ready to book, you need to be ready to pay. Reasonable request.
AirTreks seemed like a great option!. It seemed to be the best of all the attempts so far; the speed and convenience of Star Alliance, but without the high price point that comes with it. Too bad about the route options, it seems we need to do it over the phone to choose, so I really had to block off time to do it?
So it seems I’m at the end of the road right? Well that last part about having to block off time, although reasonable, was still a bit of a bother.
Maybe it won’t hurt to look for just one last option?
So I did some more research… and found the option I finally went with! Yes, we’re about to reach the end of this series. Get ready for the next post!