While price is an important consideration, living in the Philadelphia area, we will pay more for a flight that leaves USA early and leaves JA late. We also will not book anything that has a connecting flight.
We generally make our reservation, then keep an eye out and when we find a great price on a flight we want, we book.
We have found a lot of times when we book airfare can be had much cheaper at a later date.
We TRY to book as soon as we return from our trip (yearly in Feb). We always use a travel agent and book both the hotel and the flight. Due to the flights not being available, we usually have to wait until APRIL to book (sniff, sniff). Since we travel from Philadelphia, we have a non stop service on Air Jamaica available to us that gets there in the morning (and leaves in the late afternoon). I would DEFINITELY consider purchasing a deal from somewhere else (like couples) if it was financially and arrangement wise comparable. But we would not give up the non stop flight
Being in the snow biz we usually have a good idea about a month before we can go so that's when we book. We always book a vacation package with who ever has the lowest price last year it was West Jet we always use a TA that way if something screwy happens you have some back. Direct flight from YYZ to MBJ is the one thing I'll never give up I hate stop overs for SO many reasons. Early arrival at MBJ and a return that gets back to YYZ in the evening are also great mc
In June we booked a trip to CTI for this coming October:D (CAN'T WAIT!). We did some research and found that it actually saved us money to book our flights seperately AND we really wanted a non-stop flight (which was not offered with the package deal). This is the first time we separated the two bookings. If we are offered a tremendous savings by booking a package deal we may be ok with a stop along the way.
Thank you for taking the time to ask all of us for our opinions! :cool:
We book separate because we like to spend a few extra days on the cliffs and the program will not let us choose the flight dates separate from couples dates.
Due to use of air miles, credit card miles, and etc., it just makes sense for us to book air separate from our hotel. Also, our rather remote location gives us the advantage (believe it or not) of using either of two regional airports or Milwaukee, giving us a lot of options that may not be apparent to any but a local travel agent. We generally have enough tools at our disposal to "roll our own" for air.
We definitely would book package deal. Air has become so high that we are debating if we can afford another trip to Jamaica.
Randy - our situation is a little unusual. I travel a lot for work, so I always cash in my frequent flier miles when we return to Couples every winter. For our summer vacation, I still do not bundle our flight and hotel. This is because I want to be able to choose my exact flight itinerary. And many times the bundled flights are booked at a rate that is "non-upgradeable." I always want the option of being able to upgrade to first class on a long flight. I know there are a few others in this same situation who go to Couples, so I thought that you might be interested in this perspective.
We book together, cheaper and non-stop flights. Hate paying for a day on the beach that is really only 4 hours
We love the ability to book hotel and flight seperately. A lot of other Caribbean vacations, you only have the pkg. option. We like to use Air Canada, but West Jet is our next choice. Both those airlines have sales, and so far we have been able to get pretty good deals on flights.
Funnily enough I looked quite carefully at the costs this year as I thought there may be some sense in doing flights separately from the hotel (using the Wednesday specials of course!). However, at no point could I beat the tour operators so it was that route that I repeated this year. We have to fly in from the UK so it is also important for me that the booking is protected by ATOL or ABTA. This ensures that we are protected as much as possible in case the airline messes up. If we booked flights separately then we would have no protection against delay or cancellation due to volcanic dust clouds or other acts of God, etc.
Will be at CSS for our anniversary this year arriving on November 26th thro' 10th December. What a perfect place for an anniversary! Can't wait to be a 'repeater'!
I used a travel agent in the past to book hotel/air.
She did not meet my expectations for seat assignments or flight times so I book the air myself.
I would rather see a list of flight times and select them on my own. I would like to get there early and leave at the lastest time possible but there are certain connection cities that I try to avoid because of past problems. So, I will always book my own air.
Randy, This was my first time going to Couples. I work for an Airline and I priced my airline rates with discounts to your hotel. I also looked at other websites and all the above and all those places that are suppose to offer deals. I also called THREE Travel Agents. Well guess what your package was wayyyyyy cheaper with air and hotel on Couples.COM . I booked in May and I am coming in September. I am a last minute booker because I was waiting to see if I could fly to Jamaica for free, but I could not wait any longer. Plus I hate flying standby on vacation. It was like 3700 with you with air and hotel from las Vegas. BTW NOT MANY OPTIONS for flying there from LAS. However sepratly it was 3200 JUST for the hotel and I would still have to purchase air for 1100. However when you all showed what you paid for the airlines it was 1200 so you only got 2500 for the room? So the hotel is loosing that money? However we saved. I hope that makes since. I am sure for the people who book a year in advance it is not reasonable. I BTW work for Southwest Airlines and will soon be buying Airtran. I have paid for my seats already and jsut MOnday the 17th I can fly free on them. Oh WELL the flights coming home are full anyways, but it looks like I will soon do HOTEL ONLY if it is cheaper and flights are open for me to fly free. BTW Will yall ever have last minute deals for your hotels?