Subject: Air fare strategies

Questions about reasonable one-way fares prompts me to post some info on that very subject.

Most airlines think that we should pay more for the privilege of flying one way than for a roundtrip. This marketing ploy is based on the notion that business travelers, who can't always choose when they must go, will pay more to go, even at last minute. People travelling for pleasure, on the other hand, can & do plan in advance so therefore will only purchase when the price is right.

This is such nonsense it doesn't even bear defending.

So, if a one-way ticket costs more than a roundtrip ticket, what should you do? Many travelers choose to buy the roundtrip, travel on the beginning part of the trip & simply don't show up for the return. What are the airlines going to do, find you & make you pay the difference between the one way & the roundtip? Actually this has happened to some frequent business travelers, whose tickets are tracked by their frequent flyer numbers. It won't happen to a pleasure traveler.

However, don't call the airlines to cancel your return. That will cause all kinds of havoc. Also, don't get off at any point before your ticketed destination. This also is a tactic that will drive the airlines crazy & they will cancel any reservations beyond the point where you got off.

BTW, several airlines have backed away from the round-trip-should-be-cheaper mentality & offer fares on a saner rationale: Alaska, Southwest, America West to name only a few. For international carriers, Aer Lingus has the sanest pricing structure I've seen in years, & connecting in easy-to-transit Dublin for points on into Europe is dead simple. Their business class fares are very affordable if you can't use miles to upgrade on another carrier.

Gail In Eugene