With the interwebs ranting about @realDonaldTrump and his recent executive order I figured the world could survive without me weighing in on it. Regardless of my political affiliation, I’d be pissed if I couldn’t get back into the country since I’m a citizen. Hell I get pissed if my flights delayed due to weather.
Google Flights for the last minute or business traveler might not be the best bet, however, if you’re planning a summer excursion it might be worth looking into.
Google Flights is simple to use and includes some helpful features. For example, I’m headed to Mobile, Alabama next month for Mardi Gras’. Fortunately, my trip is being covered by loyalty points, heads in beds and butts in seats… baby. Just for kicks, I wanted to see what Google Flights offered me.
I got a wide range of pricing from three different airlines. Noticeably absent was Southwest, but Google Flights provided a disclaimer, “Prices are not available for: Southwest“. Since Delta’s prices weren’t noted, I’m guessing they were above United’s price of $481.00. From the above list, it’s easy to pick out a few things, such as, is it a direct flight, and do they offer WiFi.
- Seat Selection $0.00 to $80.00
- Credit Card Transactions up to $8.00
- Priority Access $4.00 to $12.00
- Food & Beverage $2.00 to $7.00
- Pet-in-Cabin (per person, per segment) $100.00
- Electronic Carrier Usage Charge (per person, per segment) $13.00
- Call Center Booking Fee (per person, per segment) $14.99
- Checked and Carry-on Baggage Fees and Allowances Fees Table
- Overweight Bags: Over 40 and under 70 pounds add $50.00 One (1) carry-on bag such as a roll-aboard bag,
garment bag, or tote bag, not to exceed exterior measurements of 9 in. x 14 in. x 22 in. (22.9 cm x 35.6 cm x 55.9 cm) $10.00 to $75.00
- Gate-checked Bags $0.00 to $75.00
After reading through all that, I’m not sure if my ticket will be $119.00 or $519.00. Just for balance, I fly this route every few months for business and normally Southwest is less than $380.00, including free baggage, open seating and a beverage two weeks out from my departure date.
An additional value that Google Flights offers is their explore destinations feature. If you know the general area you want to visit, you can explore nearby alternate destinations including flight and hotel information.
One of the most powerful features to you and especially your wallet is the ability to track flight prices, and you’ll be alerted if you flight price drops. The best part is this ties in with Google Now, yes Google’s world domination tour moves forward.
I believe in booking directly through the airlines, but for the occasional traveler, Google Flights might provide some value.