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Don't Book a Flight Through a Third Party: Here's Why

Don't Book a Flight Through a Third Party: Here's Why



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If you usually book through a third- party site, you should stop now and do this instead

Before you book a flight, consider your options.

If you have ever dealt with customer service after booking a flight through a third party, chances are your experience was much like most: grueling and unhelpful. If you have an issue with your flight — be it delays, cancellations, or weather problems — an airline will solve the problem directly whereas a third party likely won’t. Fees can be more expensive and they’re not as accommodating to the customer.

If something goes wrong — say, a flight cancellation — and you have to re-book your flight, the airline will have you go through your original purchase method for help, and as just stated, these companies don’t have the best customer service. However, if you’ve booked through the airline directly, they will immediately work to accommodate you and get you on the next available flight to your destination.

So what should you do instead? First, find the best deal through whichever third-party website you prefer. Once you’ve found the flight, jot down the flight number, head over to the airline’s website, search the same dates and airports you just used for your third-party search, and then look for the flight number. Sometimes this method is even cheaper.


Booking direct with hotel vs. Expedia/Hotels.com

I'm sure questions like this have been asked a million times, sorry for repeating.

My mother and I will be in London next summer and will be spending two nights at the K+K Hotel George. We know we want to stay there, we have stayed there before, and the dates of our stay are fixed. We do have trip insurance so we would be covered if something happens and we can no longer go on our trip.

That said, the price on the website is about $100 (USD) higher than the price if we book through Expedia or hotels.com. I have always read on here to book directly, but we do really need to stay within budget and $100 is pretty big savings. Should we book through Expedia or Hotels.com - and which site would be better (or are they basically the same)? Would we lose anything if we booked through the third-party instead of directly with the hotel?

The only thing you would lose is flexibility, and tighter T&C.

Yes it's often recommended to book direct, and we provide that advise unashamedly. However, it's a broad guideline to those who do not understand and those that tend to not read the T&C. In your situation, particularly as your dates are set, plus you have the additional coverage of travel insurance, I wouldn't hesitate to book through a reputable site like Expedia or Booking.com.

Late add - the advise we give about not using third party sites needs to be clarified.

We usually state this for third party sites, who do not have direct/live inventory with hotels. There are those - usually smaller - online agents, who do not have an agreement or direct contracts with hotels, and what they do, is to source suppliers (agents) who can provide them your required room. So this effectively means you are using this third party to request what may actually not be available, until they can find it for you. That's when you hear horror stories of non existening reservations, prices going up after payment, last minute notification of cancellation etc. They are what's known as 'resellers', and they merely acts as a fourth party in the purchase sequence.

The general rule of thumb - the more parties inbetween you and the hotel, the more difficult to resolve when things go wrong.

But in your case, you have a full understanding, and you've covered yourself well.


Booking direct with hotel vs. Expedia/Hotels.com

I'm sure questions like this have been asked a million times, sorry for repeating.

My mother and I will be in London next summer and will be spending two nights at the K+K Hotel George. We know we want to stay there, we have stayed there before, and the dates of our stay are fixed. We do have trip insurance so we would be covered if something happens and we can no longer go on our trip.

That said, the price on the website is about $100 (USD) higher than the price if we book through Expedia or hotels.com. I have always read on here to book directly, but we do really need to stay within budget and $100 is pretty big savings. Should we book through Expedia or Hotels.com - and which site would be better (or are they basically the same)? Would we lose anything if we booked through the third-party instead of directly with the hotel?

The only thing you would lose is flexibility, and tighter T&C.

Yes it's often recommended to book direct, and we provide that advise unashamedly. However, it's a broad guideline to those who do not understand and those that tend to not read the T&C. In your situation, particularly as your dates are set, plus you have the additional coverage of travel insurance, I wouldn't hesitate to book through a reputable site like Expedia or Booking.com.

Late add - the advise we give about not using third party sites needs to be clarified.

We usually state this for third party sites, who do not have direct/live inventory with hotels. There are those - usually smaller - online agents, who do not have an agreement or direct contracts with hotels, and what they do, is to source suppliers (agents) who can provide them your required room. So this effectively means you are using this third party to request what may actually not be available, until they can find it for you. That's when you hear horror stories of non existening reservations, prices going up after payment, last minute notification of cancellation etc. They are what's known as 'resellers', and they merely acts as a fourth party in the purchase sequence.

The general rule of thumb - the more parties inbetween you and the hotel, the more difficult to resolve when things go wrong.

But in your case, you have a full understanding, and you've covered yourself well.


Booking direct with hotel vs. Expedia/Hotels.com

I'm sure questions like this have been asked a million times, sorry for repeating.

My mother and I will be in London next summer and will be spending two nights at the K+K Hotel George. We know we want to stay there, we have stayed there before, and the dates of our stay are fixed. We do have trip insurance so we would be covered if something happens and we can no longer go on our trip.

That said, the price on the website is about $100 (USD) higher than the price if we book through Expedia or hotels.com. I have always read on here to book directly, but we do really need to stay within budget and $100 is pretty big savings. Should we book through Expedia or Hotels.com - and which site would be better (or are they basically the same)? Would we lose anything if we booked through the third-party instead of directly with the hotel?

The only thing you would lose is flexibility, and tighter T&C.

Yes it's often recommended to book direct, and we provide that advise unashamedly. However, it's a broad guideline to those who do not understand and those that tend to not read the T&C. In your situation, particularly as your dates are set, plus you have the additional coverage of travel insurance, I wouldn't hesitate to book through a reputable site like Expedia or Booking.com.

Late add - the advise we give about not using third party sites needs to be clarified.

We usually state this for third party sites, who do not have direct/live inventory with hotels. There are those - usually smaller - online agents, who do not have an agreement or direct contracts with hotels, and what they do, is to source suppliers (agents) who can provide them your required room. So this effectively means you are using this third party to request what may actually not be available, until they can find it for you. That's when you hear horror stories of non existening reservations, prices going up after payment, last minute notification of cancellation etc. They are what's known as 'resellers', and they merely acts as a fourth party in the purchase sequence.

The general rule of thumb - the more parties inbetween you and the hotel, the more difficult to resolve when things go wrong.

But in your case, you have a full understanding, and you've covered yourself well.


Booking direct with hotel vs. Expedia/Hotels.com

I'm sure questions like this have been asked a million times, sorry for repeating.

My mother and I will be in London next summer and will be spending two nights at the K+K Hotel George. We know we want to stay there, we have stayed there before, and the dates of our stay are fixed. We do have trip insurance so we would be covered if something happens and we can no longer go on our trip.

That said, the price on the website is about $100 (USD) higher than the price if we book through Expedia or hotels.com. I have always read on here to book directly, but we do really need to stay within budget and $100 is pretty big savings. Should we book through Expedia or Hotels.com - and which site would be better (or are they basically the same)? Would we lose anything if we booked through the third-party instead of directly with the hotel?

The only thing you would lose is flexibility, and tighter T&C.

Yes it's often recommended to book direct, and we provide that advise unashamedly. However, it's a broad guideline to those who do not understand and those that tend to not read the T&C. In your situation, particularly as your dates are set, plus you have the additional coverage of travel insurance, I wouldn't hesitate to book through a reputable site like Expedia or Booking.com.

Late add - the advise we give about not using third party sites needs to be clarified.

We usually state this for third party sites, who do not have direct/live inventory with hotels. There are those - usually smaller - online agents, who do not have an agreement or direct contracts with hotels, and what they do, is to source suppliers (agents) who can provide them your required room. So this effectively means you are using this third party to request what may actually not be available, until they can find it for you. That's when you hear horror stories of non existening reservations, prices going up after payment, last minute notification of cancellation etc. They are what's known as 'resellers', and they merely acts as a fourth party in the purchase sequence.

The general rule of thumb - the more parties inbetween you and the hotel, the more difficult to resolve when things go wrong.

But in your case, you have a full understanding, and you've covered yourself well.


Booking direct with hotel vs. Expedia/Hotels.com

I'm sure questions like this have been asked a million times, sorry for repeating.

My mother and I will be in London next summer and will be spending two nights at the K+K Hotel George. We know we want to stay there, we have stayed there before, and the dates of our stay are fixed. We do have trip insurance so we would be covered if something happens and we can no longer go on our trip.

That said, the price on the website is about $100 (USD) higher than the price if we book through Expedia or hotels.com. I have always read on here to book directly, but we do really need to stay within budget and $100 is pretty big savings. Should we book through Expedia or Hotels.com - and which site would be better (or are they basically the same)? Would we lose anything if we booked through the third-party instead of directly with the hotel?

The only thing you would lose is flexibility, and tighter T&C.

Yes it's often recommended to book direct, and we provide that advise unashamedly. However, it's a broad guideline to those who do not understand and those that tend to not read the T&C. In your situation, particularly as your dates are set, plus you have the additional coverage of travel insurance, I wouldn't hesitate to book through a reputable site like Expedia or Booking.com.

Late add - the advise we give about not using third party sites needs to be clarified.

We usually state this for third party sites, who do not have direct/live inventory with hotels. There are those - usually smaller - online agents, who do not have an agreement or direct contracts with hotels, and what they do, is to source suppliers (agents) who can provide them your required room. So this effectively means you are using this third party to request what may actually not be available, until they can find it for you. That's when you hear horror stories of non existening reservations, prices going up after payment, last minute notification of cancellation etc. They are what's known as 'resellers', and they merely acts as a fourth party in the purchase sequence.

The general rule of thumb - the more parties inbetween you and the hotel, the more difficult to resolve when things go wrong.

But in your case, you have a full understanding, and you've covered yourself well.


Booking direct with hotel vs. Expedia/Hotels.com

I'm sure questions like this have been asked a million times, sorry for repeating.

My mother and I will be in London next summer and will be spending two nights at the K+K Hotel George. We know we want to stay there, we have stayed there before, and the dates of our stay are fixed. We do have trip insurance so we would be covered if something happens and we can no longer go on our trip.

That said, the price on the website is about $100 (USD) higher than the price if we book through Expedia or hotels.com. I have always read on here to book directly, but we do really need to stay within budget and $100 is pretty big savings. Should we book through Expedia or Hotels.com - and which site would be better (or are they basically the same)? Would we lose anything if we booked through the third-party instead of directly with the hotel?

The only thing you would lose is flexibility, and tighter T&C.

Yes it's often recommended to book direct, and we provide that advise unashamedly. However, it's a broad guideline to those who do not understand and those that tend to not read the T&C. In your situation, particularly as your dates are set, plus you have the additional coverage of travel insurance, I wouldn't hesitate to book through a reputable site like Expedia or Booking.com.

Late add - the advise we give about not using third party sites needs to be clarified.

We usually state this for third party sites, who do not have direct/live inventory with hotels. There are those - usually smaller - online agents, who do not have an agreement or direct contracts with hotels, and what they do, is to source suppliers (agents) who can provide them your required room. So this effectively means you are using this third party to request what may actually not be available, until they can find it for you. That's when you hear horror stories of non existening reservations, prices going up after payment, last minute notification of cancellation etc. They are what's known as 'resellers', and they merely acts as a fourth party in the purchase sequence.

The general rule of thumb - the more parties inbetween you and the hotel, the more difficult to resolve when things go wrong.

But in your case, you have a full understanding, and you've covered yourself well.


Booking direct with hotel vs. Expedia/Hotels.com

I'm sure questions like this have been asked a million times, sorry for repeating.

My mother and I will be in London next summer and will be spending two nights at the K+K Hotel George. We know we want to stay there, we have stayed there before, and the dates of our stay are fixed. We do have trip insurance so we would be covered if something happens and we can no longer go on our trip.

That said, the price on the website is about $100 (USD) higher than the price if we book through Expedia or hotels.com. I have always read on here to book directly, but we do really need to stay within budget and $100 is pretty big savings. Should we book through Expedia or Hotels.com - and which site would be better (or are they basically the same)? Would we lose anything if we booked through the third-party instead of directly with the hotel?

The only thing you would lose is flexibility, and tighter T&C.

Yes it's often recommended to book direct, and we provide that advise unashamedly. However, it's a broad guideline to those who do not understand and those that tend to not read the T&C. In your situation, particularly as your dates are set, plus you have the additional coverage of travel insurance, I wouldn't hesitate to book through a reputable site like Expedia or Booking.com.

Late add - the advise we give about not using third party sites needs to be clarified.

We usually state this for third party sites, who do not have direct/live inventory with hotels. There are those - usually smaller - online agents, who do not have an agreement or direct contracts with hotels, and what they do, is to source suppliers (agents) who can provide them your required room. So this effectively means you are using this third party to request what may actually not be available, until they can find it for you. That's when you hear horror stories of non existening reservations, prices going up after payment, last minute notification of cancellation etc. They are what's known as 'resellers', and they merely acts as a fourth party in the purchase sequence.

The general rule of thumb - the more parties inbetween you and the hotel, the more difficult to resolve when things go wrong.

But in your case, you have a full understanding, and you've covered yourself well.


Booking direct with hotel vs. Expedia/Hotels.com

I'm sure questions like this have been asked a million times, sorry for repeating.

My mother and I will be in London next summer and will be spending two nights at the K+K Hotel George. We know we want to stay there, we have stayed there before, and the dates of our stay are fixed. We do have trip insurance so we would be covered if something happens and we can no longer go on our trip.

That said, the price on the website is about $100 (USD) higher than the price if we book through Expedia or hotels.com. I have always read on here to book directly, but we do really need to stay within budget and $100 is pretty big savings. Should we book through Expedia or Hotels.com - and which site would be better (or are they basically the same)? Would we lose anything if we booked through the third-party instead of directly with the hotel?

The only thing you would lose is flexibility, and tighter T&C.

Yes it's often recommended to book direct, and we provide that advise unashamedly. However, it's a broad guideline to those who do not understand and those that tend to not read the T&C. In your situation, particularly as your dates are set, plus you have the additional coverage of travel insurance, I wouldn't hesitate to book through a reputable site like Expedia or Booking.com.

Late add - the advise we give about not using third party sites needs to be clarified.

We usually state this for third party sites, who do not have direct/live inventory with hotels. There are those - usually smaller - online agents, who do not have an agreement or direct contracts with hotels, and what they do, is to source suppliers (agents) who can provide them your required room. So this effectively means you are using this third party to request what may actually not be available, until they can find it for you. That's when you hear horror stories of non existening reservations, prices going up after payment, last minute notification of cancellation etc. They are what's known as 'resellers', and they merely acts as a fourth party in the purchase sequence.

The general rule of thumb - the more parties inbetween you and the hotel, the more difficult to resolve when things go wrong.

But in your case, you have a full understanding, and you've covered yourself well.


Booking direct with hotel vs. Expedia/Hotels.com

I'm sure questions like this have been asked a million times, sorry for repeating.

My mother and I will be in London next summer and will be spending two nights at the K+K Hotel George. We know we want to stay there, we have stayed there before, and the dates of our stay are fixed. We do have trip insurance so we would be covered if something happens and we can no longer go on our trip.

That said, the price on the website is about $100 (USD) higher than the price if we book through Expedia or hotels.com. I have always read on here to book directly, but we do really need to stay within budget and $100 is pretty big savings. Should we book through Expedia or Hotels.com - and which site would be better (or are they basically the same)? Would we lose anything if we booked through the third-party instead of directly with the hotel?

The only thing you would lose is flexibility, and tighter T&C.

Yes it's often recommended to book direct, and we provide that advise unashamedly. However, it's a broad guideline to those who do not understand and those that tend to not read the T&C. In your situation, particularly as your dates are set, plus you have the additional coverage of travel insurance, I wouldn't hesitate to book through a reputable site like Expedia or Booking.com.

Late add - the advise we give about not using third party sites needs to be clarified.

We usually state this for third party sites, who do not have direct/live inventory with hotels. There are those - usually smaller - online agents, who do not have an agreement or direct contracts with hotels, and what they do, is to source suppliers (agents) who can provide them your required room. So this effectively means you are using this third party to request what may actually not be available, until they can find it for you. That's when you hear horror stories of non existening reservations, prices going up after payment, last minute notification of cancellation etc. They are what's known as 'resellers', and they merely acts as a fourth party in the purchase sequence.

The general rule of thumb - the more parties inbetween you and the hotel, the more difficult to resolve when things go wrong.

But in your case, you have a full understanding, and you've covered yourself well.


Booking direct with hotel vs. Expedia/Hotels.com

I'm sure questions like this have been asked a million times, sorry for repeating.

My mother and I will be in London next summer and will be spending two nights at the K+K Hotel George. We know we want to stay there, we have stayed there before, and the dates of our stay are fixed. We do have trip insurance so we would be covered if something happens and we can no longer go on our trip.

That said, the price on the website is about $100 (USD) higher than the price if we book through Expedia or hotels.com. I have always read on here to book directly, but we do really need to stay within budget and $100 is pretty big savings. Should we book through Expedia or Hotels.com - and which site would be better (or are they basically the same)? Would we lose anything if we booked through the third-party instead of directly with the hotel?

The only thing you would lose is flexibility, and tighter T&C.

Yes it's often recommended to book direct, and we provide that advise unashamedly. However, it's a broad guideline to those who do not understand and those that tend to not read the T&C. In your situation, particularly as your dates are set, plus you have the additional coverage of travel insurance, I wouldn't hesitate to book through a reputable site like Expedia or Booking.com.

Late add - the advise we give about not using third party sites needs to be clarified.

We usually state this for third party sites, who do not have direct/live inventory with hotels. There are those - usually smaller - online agents, who do not have an agreement or direct contracts with hotels, and what they do, is to source suppliers (agents) who can provide them your required room. So this effectively means you are using this third party to request what may actually not be available, until they can find it for you. That's when you hear horror stories of non existening reservations, prices going up after payment, last minute notification of cancellation etc. They are what's known as 'resellers', and they merely acts as a fourth party in the purchase sequence.

The general rule of thumb - the more parties inbetween you and the hotel, the more difficult to resolve when things go wrong.

But in your case, you have a full understanding, and you've covered yourself well.