View Full Version : Same routing, same flights, same day but different fares ....

29th Jul 2018, 22:04
I am considering booking a long haul return flight at Christmas. The flights are shared between a European legacy carrier and a non-European legacy carrier. Same flights, same days, same amenities – class of Y, meals, baggage allowance, charges etc. The total price of booking on the non-European carrier’s website is considerably less than booking on the European carrier’s website. What am I not understanding?

If there was a delay when travelling, could I claim compensation under the EU261 regulation if:

1. the flight affected was on the aircraft of the EU legacy carrier or
2. the flight affected was on the aircraft of the non-EU legacy carrier?

And why is there such a difference in price for the same flights, days, routing etc depending on which of the code-share airlines I book with directly on its own proper website?

Advice, information and explanations very much appreciated. Many thanks in advance..

29th Jul 2018, 23:49
Each carrier has its own set of rules and priorities and well as what it has to pay to the others in the chain. Perhaps they are trying to buy market share with low prices at the moment? Also, check that you are allowed to actually book and pay from Country A, if you are using a website in Country B. Small print!

30th Jul 2018, 00:47
I have booked a ticket with a code-sharing airline in preference to the operating airline, which saved me about AUD200 (about 10%). Same flights, days, baggage, meals, etc. However, I wasn't able to check in online with either the ticketing airline or the operating airline and I was assigned a middle seat in a block of four, down the back of Y class on a (very) long haul flight, next to a chap with very broad shoulders. I didn't spot this restriction in the terms and conditions, and they might not have even been mentioned in them. This was despite being a frequent flyer member on the operating airline, with seat preferences always having been honoured when booking directly with that airline. My partner had a similar experience with a part-code share flight - on a different route and airline - where online check in wasn't available and a middle seat on the code-share flight had been automatically assigned.

I suspect that the code sharing airline is assigned specific seats on the flight, and to keep computer and business systems simple there isn't the same flexibility on seat selection and online check in. In my case it was a full flight with no chance of a seat reallocation. In my partner's case luck prevailed and a seat reallocation at the gate was forthcoming (after asking nicely!).

So in buying the cheaper option you might be giving up a degree of seat flexibility and comfort. In my case I learned a lesson and I now tend to spend the extra money and book directly with the operating airline, unless the savings really outweigh my tolerance for discomfort.

30th Jul 2018, 07:41
Thank you so much ... the replies so far are most helpful and I think I'll be coughing up the extra for comfort and flexibility which I hadn't taken into account! Further replies will be most welcome.

30th Jul 2018, 18:45
You mention EU261. The scheme applies to EU carriers on flights from and to the EU. The non-EU carrier is only covered on the flight from the EU. On your return it does not apply.

I live in the UK. My nearest airports are places like Exeter and Bristol. However, I choose to make my way to Heathrow and even Gatwick for long-haul. Why? Because it means I can fly non-stop. From any of the other airports round here I have to change somewhere. Actually, I'll even go to London for most short haul mainly because of flight frequency.

How do I choose airlines? I think the first thing to say is that I'll fly in almost anything, anywhere. Yes, the risk on a Nepalese Twin Otter into the Himalayas or a CAAC IL14 may be higher than on a BA 747 on Air Canada 777 but when the alternative is the driving habits in some countries I'll fly! That said, I have a very personal way of choosing which airlines to fly on based on safety, comfort, occasionally aircraft type and (some) loyalty. Price usually comes at the bottom of the list!

30th Jul 2018, 23:49
SLFAussie reminds me that a friend of mine booking a dog-leg route with a change of carier had the same log-in and seat problem. She was fortunate that she prefer aisle seats and was on an aisle, not plonked in the middle block on the A340. It was cheaper but she said 'never again'. I don't know how old Harington is but, the older I get, the more I am prepared to shell out the pennies!