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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Posts
    527

    Default Need help from my fellow cheeseheads

    Hi my couples friends from wisconsin!
    I am planning our honeymoon for Jan at cti. We are planning on booking early so that we can take advantage of the bonus $300 credit plus great rate.
    Here is where the question comes in. Although this will be te fourth trip to couples, I have never booked air and room separately. We are doing the love away plan, but wonder if we should book air now? I've been playing with numbers and it seems like anytime from sept until Jan it will be about $500 each round trip. I think that seems fine- about what I figured for weekday travel, but should I expect a huge jump bc it is close to holidays as time goes on?
    Also, why the heck is it cheaper for my friends from Canada to fly nonstop to jamaica than it is for us?
    I would love to find a reasonable fare, a nonstop flight, or a flight from Madison that put us in before noonso that we don't kill a day getting there and coming home! Ugh
    poor us...whining about how to get to paradise
    seriously though, I'll take any advice I can get from my knowledgeable Midwestern couples lovers!
    Thank you!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Posts
    30

    Default

    There is no non-stop to Jamaica from Wisc. The only non-stop I know of is on American from Camp O'hare. I miss Air Jamaica out of O'Hare I always go with what is the cheapest. I have flown out of both Mitchell and O'Hare to Jamaica. I book my airfare as early as possible. it is usually cheaper. Since I book so far ahead I have to buy my airfare seperately. We already booked 2012 hotel. I will start looking at airfares late July. Because of a snafu with USair schedule change. This year we fly out of O'Hare and back to Mitchell. I do always try to leave a longer connection time on the way home so I can still make it if there are any delays or lines in customs.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    394

    Default

    Congrats! You picked the perfect place for a honeymoon! We are from Cottage grove Wi. and have been flying to Jamaica since 1996. The best packages with direct flights used to be charters thru Milwaukee but they don't come out with prices until June or July. Last year they were really high. Before Delta bought Northwest we were able to fly Madison thru Memphis to Montego Bay and they were good flights. Now Delta goes thru Atlanta so we have not used them. Our last 3 trips we have flown direct on American Airlines from Chicago. They are great flights leaving Chicago at 8:10 am. We use a park and fly near the airport. We have booked directly with AA vacations and with an online website. If you would like more information you can contact me at sue.adolph@gmail.com. We already booked CTI and airfare for Jan. 14-21 2012 (for a good price with the resort credit) Maybe we'll see you at CTI in January!

  4. #4

    Default

    Have you considered driving down to O'hare since you are in Madison? You should be able to get an early direct flight from there. It's getting harder and harder to get early or direct flights if you are not located at a major hub airport. Yes, we book flights seperately from room, usually going directly to the airline's website will give you the largest selection and cheapest flights or atleast the flights you want, and then go rate shop.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    809

    Default

    I wouldn't wait to long before booking. Since gas prices are so volatile you just don't know about where flight prices are going. We are flying out of Minneapolis (Live in Loyal, central part of the state & found they gave us the better prices/times) and our cost was quite similar for early December. We get into Jamaica around 3, and leave at 3:30pm. Couldn't find anything that got us in any earlier. Actually, we have been going for the past couple of years, and always seem to get in between 2:30 & 3:30.

    Don't know about rates here compared to Canada, but that is a really good question. I wish I could get a direct flight from our area without having to go to Chicago to do so. I hate driving in Chicago, (I am from a small rural area) and it is a 5-6 hour trip, so we go to Minneapolis (we can catch a shuttle bus in Eau Claire, and not have to drive), a 3 hour trip. CWA is so much more expensive and the flights are even worse. We also travel on Saturday to maximize my vacation time.

    If you ever find a non-stop from Madison be sure to let us know. That I agree would be great.
    Linda

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    708

    Default

    Honestly, airfares are largely a gamble. Fuel prices play a huge role in prices. Also the economy, airlines will cut flights when they aren't full over a period of time which will not only limit your options but also drive up prices because of "demand". Over the years we've learned we have to decide what price we feel we are willing to pay and book the flight when we are ready and it meets our acceptable price, then quit looking at the prices or at least not be disappointed if prices drop after we've booked.

    As far as finding the best flight time wise, how about contacting a travel agent? They have plenty of time to do all the looking for you to find the flight that meets your requirements and they don't charge you anything for their services. In fact, I usually spend a lot of time months prior to booking pricing the trip just for fun but when it's time to book we use a TA and she always matches what I'm finding and often gets me a better price so you might find a good TA saves you money. Also, a good TA is a great resource if you run into a glitch, you'll have a real human who knows you and is able to help you out.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Posts
    23

    Default From a fellow cheesehead

    Hi! We are from Milwaukee and going to CSA in July. You should see if fun jet flies around that time and try to get a packaged deal if you didn't make reservations yet. If you didn't make reservations yet, Randy just said prices are going up as of May 27th. We are not flying fun jet as they don't have the charter flights when we go. Wishing you the best.

  8. #8

    Default

    We just went for our first time this past February to CSS, and booked our flight & hotel separate. We are from La Crosse and paid approximately $525 for a non-stop flight out of Minneapolis. That was about as cheap as I had seen them. We bought them early, and continued to watch ticket prices mostly go up and actually double at one time, as time got closer. If you can get your tickets for $500 non-stop, I'd do it ASAP. I think we bought our tickets last June or July... Personally, I think non-stop is the way to go.

  9. #9

    Default

    I forgot to mention that we flew Delta...

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    207

    Default

    Well, I'm not sure if my info will be relevant for you, since we fly out of Minneapolis every Dec. in order to be back in time for Christmas with the kids who live there. We stay at a Sleep, Park and Fly in Bloomington. Usually, our flights are not even listed until 180 days out. We hate to pay more than $800 for the both of us for Friday or Saturday travel, but I think this year it may be end up to be more. Seems that prices will come down in the fall, so I will wait until then to look seriously.

    Congratulations on your wedding and honeymoon!

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Posts
    520

    Default

    Hello, from just east of madtown. We usually do park sleep fly out of ohare we used to take the direct on air jamaica but have taken the direct on american the last two times to mbj out of ord and are flying to rome in two weeks again out of ohare, it is just easier. You can get a park, sleep, fly for about $100 that includes parking for up to 10 days....
    Erika & Sean

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Posts
    527

    Default

    I think the increase is just for csa. We will be doing the love away plan I think. Obviously before June 30.
    Ohare has nonstop, as does Milwaukee, but they arrive much later in the day. What ever happened to red-eye flights? Wouldn't that be amazing?
    As of now, our best bet is to fly to new York from Milwaukee one way, jfk to mbj on Jamaica air one way, getting in at 9:45 am!!! Then another one way to milwaukee from mbj. This is the cheapest and gives usthe most Jamaica time.
    Can't wait!!!!!

  13. #13

    Default Greetings Neighbor from Minnesota....

    My Husband and I will be traveling to TI from Friday Jan 27 to Friday Feb 3 2012. I have been checking for a couple months now for deals or the less expensive way of going. The price has gone up 2 times in the last 3 months it seems. The pricing I have gotten from Travel Agencies have been pretty close in flight and hotel but very different in insurance costs. Comparing using a travel agent or not, I found it almost equal. For the few dollars extra having the travel agent take care of things is well worth it to me.

    Even though we have a small airport in our community we are chosing to drive to Minneapolis to get better pricing. We leave MNSP at 745am and arrive at 3pm. Although there were not many flight options to chose from this one still lets us arrive early enough to get to the resort and enjoy an evening of relaxing before all the fun begins the next day.

    If you are interested in comparing pricig with us email me and I would be glad to tell you what we are paying. We chose these dates also to take advantage of the $300 resort credit. We are first timers and are looking forward to getting away from the -30 degrees we get here in Jan and Feb. We are also thinking of maybe doing the resort switch for a day as well. You?

    What dates do you all have in mind? Which Couples have you been too?



















    Quote Originally Posted by madtown mom View Post
    Hi my couples friends from wisconsin!
    I am planning our honeymoon for Jan at cti. We are planning on booking early so that we can take advantage of the bonus $300 credit plus great rate.
    Here is where the question comes in. Although this will be te fourth trip to couples, I have never booked air and room separately. We are doing the love away plan, but wonder if we should book air now? I've been playing with numbers and it seems like anytime from sept until Jan it will be about $500 each round trip. I think that seems fine- about what I figured for weekday travel, but should I expect a huge jump bc it is close to holidays as time goes on?
    Also, why the heck is it cheaper for my friends from Canada to fly nonstop to jamaica than it is for us?
    I would love to find a reasonable fare, a nonstop flight, or a flight from Madison that put us in before noonso that we don't kill a day getting there and coming home! Ugh
    poor us...whining about how to get to paradise
    seriously though, I'll take any advice I can get from my knowledgeable Midwestern couples lovers!
    Thank you!

  14. #14

    Default

    morning, we are from beaver dam and have been to csa 33 times and fly out of milwaukee and park at exec park, we have flown us air thru charlotte and delta thru atlanta when fun jet doesnt have a charter jet available, i have had good luck with both air lines,, but jan thru the end of march funjet has a charter jet direct out of milwaukee, the last few times it has been with air tran and flights are always good and about a 4 hour flight, i never can trust the weather in milwaukee or at the other 2 air ports at that time of year, so i figure it is worth a few extra bucks to do the chater, i have already booked march of 2012 but waiting for the charter jet schedule, couples will work with you on room dates depending on the flight schedule of the chater flight flying times, have fun, waynef

  15. #15

    Default

    We flew non-stop out of Milwaukee last March through FunJet. Check with a travel agent. We left at 8:30 am (with an hour delay so the pilot could sleep!) and got to CSS by 2ish. Non-stop is the only way to go!

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    394

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Jam24 View Post
    There is no non-stop to Jamaica from Wisc. The only non-stop I know of is on American from Camp O'hare. I miss Air Jamaica out of O'Hare I always go with what is the cheapest. I have flown out of both Mitchell and O'Hare to Jamaica. I book my airfare as early as possible. it is usually cheaper. Since I book so far ahead I have to buy my airfare seperately. We already booked 2012 hotel. I will start looking at airfares late July. Because of a snafu with USair schedule change. This year we fly out of O'Hare and back to Mitchell. I do always try to leave a longer connection time on the way home so I can still make it if there are any delays or lines in customs.
    The charters do have direct flights in January out of Milwaukee but they don't usually list them until June or July of the previous year. Last year both Apple and Funjet had Sat. and Sun. flights Christmas thru Easter. The charter packages were more expensive than the AA packages thru Chicago. We've been able to book a non-charter package 330 days out. We have always saved money by booking air and resort together. Already booked for Jan. 2012 and thinking about booking another week for March or April before the resort credit is gone!

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Posts
    527

    Default

    Wow, so much to consider. It's hard for me to wait to see about the charter jet. I agree that direct sounds amazing, but traveling overnight to ny to get in so early really sounds better, and cheaper.
    The ohare thing is really unappealing to me. Just a pain to get to with prices that aren't better than Milwaukee.
    Tarandavid, we want to go for the anniversary party, probably the tues before to the weds after. We are waiting to find out child watching details. We went to csa last april and did a trading places with cn. Prior to that I had stayed at cn twice. We are excited to see the other side of the island, and absolutely plan on visiting css in Jan while staying at cti. Then we will have seen them all!
    We probably should find a travel agent, but I have no clue how to find a good one. I'm sure most people go by word of mouth, but in our circle of friends, most camp or bike through Thailand, so I'm quite certain I don't know anyone who has used a travel agent.
    Oh wisconsinfriends, thanks for all of your help! Hope to see some of you in Jan!

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    394

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by madtown mom View Post
    Wow, so much to consider. It's hard for me to wait to see about the charter jet. I agree that direct sounds amazing, but traveling overnight to ny to get in so early really sounds better, and cheaper.
    The ohare thing is really unappealing to me. Just a pain to get to with prices that aren't better than Milwaukee.
    Tarandavid, we want to go for the anniversary party, probably the tues before to the weds after. We are waiting to find out child watching details. We went to csa last april and did a trading places with cn. Prior to that I had stayed at cn twice. We are excited to see the other side of the island, and absolutely plan on visiting css in Jan while staying at cti. Then we will have seen them all!
    We probably should find a travel agent, but I have no clue how to find a good one. I'm sure most people go by word of mouth, but in our circle of friends, most camp or bike through Thailand, so I'm quite certain I don't know anyone who has used a travel agent.
    Oh wisconsinfriends, thanks for all of your help! Hope to see some of you in Jan!
    I can recommend a good travel agent in Middleton. If you are interested e-mail me at sue.adolph@gmail.com

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    394

    Default

    Did some research and it looks like the Milwaukee charter flights are out for January thru April 8 2012. Air Tran flights are on Sat. and Sunday starting Dec. 30th thru Easter and they added Wednesdays for February and March

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Posts
    527

    Default

    Thanks, saw that too. I'll let you know what I find! Thanks again!

  21. #21
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Posts
    520

    Default

    Honestly the ohare thing imo couldn't be easier. We drive down the night before do park and fly no delays. Guess I dint see the hassle and you dont have to wake up at the crack of dawn for a red eye. Would love to get to csa that early but what are the odds your room will be ready? To each their own though.
    Erika & Sean

  22. #22
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    2,013

    Default

    Actually, this time around (coming up in October) we booked MKE to MBJ through Charlotte on USAir. Never done this particular itinerary, but it gets into MBJ at 11:40 am (EARLY start, though.... 5:35 am). If all is on schedule, we'll be at SweptAway earlier than we've ever been before.
    Chris

    "In an abundance of water, the fool is thirsty..." - Bob Marley - "Rat Race"


  23. #23
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Posts
    527

    Default

    Yes, that's another option. We work Ina restaurant, so staying up late is no problem to catch a flight. No need for the room, just the bar and ocean!!!

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