How to make the most of Falls Festival
Whether you've secured your tickets already or are looking to purchase yours soon, here's everything you need to ...KEEP READING
Remember the days when buying a flight online was a pretty straightforward exercise? Choose your destination, your dates, input your details and voila, the ticket was yours.
Then the little extras started to creep in: you had to pay extra to get fed on the flight, check-in luggage cost more, and you could even opt to pay a carbon offset fee if you were feeling environmentally-friendly.
These days it’s much, much worse. I went online the other day to book a few domestic flights and couldn’t believe how complicated it’s become. I felt like I was wading through a bank application not buying a weekend escape to Queensland.
All those little things you used to get for free have now become optional extras. Sure, the flights are super cheap – as little as $69 one-way to the Gold Coast if you’re not fussy about the time you travel – but it’s definitely a no-frills affair. For my Jetstar flight I had umpteen extras that could very quickly add up:
• After selecting my flight I could choose the starter fare, the ‘Plus bundle’ (our most popular bundle) for an extra $19 or the ‘Max bundle’ for an additional $110. Each bundle had a variety of different benefits;
• An extra $17 each way to check-in luggage or as Jetstar puts it, ‘Add baggage now and save’;
• An extra $0.99 for an SMS itinerary – something they should send you for free.
But the ones that really got me were the extra costs relating to seats:
• $25 for extra leg room – this means you can sit in the exit row where you’re paying for the privilege of being ‘willing to assist in the unlikely event of an emergency’;
• $12 extra to sit up the front – same deal with helping out in an emergency;
• and $5 to choose a standard seat i.e. do you prefer an aisle or window?
What? $5 to select a seat? On a short domestic flight?
When I didn’t take up this generous offer I was given a warning: ‘If you skip seat selection a seat will be assigned for you randomly from what is still available at check-in.’
Huh? Kind of like we’ve always done?
Wait, there’s more:
• insurance for $12.95
• pre-purchase parking for $80
• Hotels from $106.60 per night
• Cars at $45 a day
• Activities … including a VIP Pass Jetstar for $109.99 per adult
• Airport transfers $20
• Carbon offset for $1.28
• Star kids – make a contribution to help fund projects in destinations such as Thailand, Vietnam and Indonesia.
Phil Sylvester from Travel Insurance Direct joined Tim Webster to talk about ways to use your Frequent Flyer ...KEEP READING