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How Does Airlines Pricing Work?!  
User currently offlineTraveladdict From Malaysia, joined Feb 2009, 46 posts, RR: 0
Posted (5 years 4 months 4 weeks ago) and read 6806 times:

I'm thoroughly confused. I'm trying to book a flight from EWR-KUL so naturally I look at MH. I'm also looking to have a stopover in ARN (the flight goes EWR-ARN-KUL) but MH says I must book separate tickets, EWR-ARN, then ARN-KUL, which would obviously cost alot more. So then I search the individual segments, and ARN-KUL return is SEK12000+ or about RM5000+ whereas EWR-KUL return is USD800+ or less than RM3000.

??! So a person flying from Sweden to Kuala Lumpur would be better off buying a ticket from EWR-KUL and then just pull a no-show at EWR. How the hell does this work!

34 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineSwiftski From Australia, joined Dec 2006, 2701 posts, RR: 2
Reply 1, posted (5 years 4 months 4 weeks ago) and read 6791 times:



Quoting Traveladdict (Thread starter):
??! So a person flying from Sweden to Kuala Lumpur would be better off buying a ticket from EWR-KUL and then just pull a no-show at EWR. How the hell does this work!

If you no-show for a EWR-ARN-KUL flight, you will not be able to board in ARN.


User currently offlineMascmo From United States of America, joined Mar 2008, 93 posts, RR: 0
Reply 2, posted (5 years 4 months 4 weeks ago) and read 6762 times:

Yeah I find this very crazy also as I am traveling to Spain at the end of the year. From ANC to BCN is $1,039 but from ADQ to BCN it was $1,800?!?!? But from ADQ to ANC it is $360 (which is way too expensive but I won't get into that)!!! So I could pay $500 more and book it all together or pay $500 less and book it in segments...this is just crazy I would love to here some explanation for how this works also!

User currently offlineDualQual From United States of America, joined Mar 2006, 754 posts, RR: 1
Reply 3, posted (5 years 4 months 4 weeks ago) and read 6762 times:

When you all figure it out you will be the only ones that have any clue how it works.

User currently offlineTraveladdict From Malaysia, joined Feb 2009, 46 posts, RR: 0
Reply 4, posted (5 years 4 months 4 weeks ago) and read 6735 times:

But the whole thing with MH not letting me have a stopover in ARN, unless I buy two separate tickets, is that normal? I'm even willing to pay a "fee" or wtv to have that stopover but it's like NO, you MUST buy separate tickets. I flew YVR-KUL via HK with CX all the way and I was allowed to have a stopover in HK... yes I know that it required changing planes, whereas this one doesn't but I don't see how it matters?  Angry

User currently offlineMascmo From United States of America, joined Mar 2008, 93 posts, RR: 0
Reply 5, posted (5 years 4 months 4 weeks ago) and read 6714 times:

Traveladdict you should really call the airline, their website does not know you want to do that. You need to speak to one of their agents I am sure they can work something out for you.

User currently offlineTraveladdict From Malaysia, joined Feb 2009, 46 posts, RR: 0
Reply 6, posted (5 years 4 months 4 weeks ago) and read 6690 times:

Mascmo, I spoke with a local agent here in NY and he said it wasn't possible and I figured ah what does he know. So I called the head office in Malaysia and spoke to an English-speaking agent, and he said it wasn't possible. Spoke to a Malay-speaking agent and she also said it wasn't possible. I don't know what else to do!

User currently offlineMascmo From United States of America, joined Mar 2008, 93 posts, RR: 0
Reply 7, posted (5 years 4 months 4 weeks ago) and read 6672 times:

Sorry Traveladdict, I just saw you searched for it so I assumed you meant online. Maybe another airline? Sorry to hear that...good luck!

User currently offlineAg92 From India, joined Jul 2006, 1317 posts, RR: 0
Reply 8, posted (5 years 4 months 3 weeks 6 days 23 hours ago) and read 6669 times:

On the higher fare class tickets they will allow you to do a stopover at ARN if you need to

No one fully understands the airline pricing maybe not even those who control it, but from my perspective, each market pays a different rate for the flight, e.g. a person from SriLanka to Sydney will pay much less then a guy from Dubai to Sydney even though the latter is a longer flight and may involve greater costs.

SOme of the basics of pricing is this:
1) Origin destination - each country has a different cost of living, so each country is charged accordingly. A coke in India costs 30cents but a Coke in Singapore costs 1.50 - all rates are in Singapore dollars
2) Final Destination - same thing, a guy traveling from Sydney to Ahemdabad may pay less then another guy flying Sydney - Delhi - same flying time, same service, different prices
3) Customization of Tickets - Re-booking, cancelling etc. priveleges including stopovers
4) How much they want to sell you the ticket, e.g. there maybe a single seat from Singapore to Sydney but they know the guy traveling from SIN - SYD will pay 2000 dollars, and another guy from Penang - Sydney will pay 1200 dollars for the exact same flight, but htey will tell him the flight is booked because they are potentially missing out on 800 dollars - all figures are just for displaying, they may not display the exact price
5) Who you are, quite simply corporate customers - cheaper, staff cheaper, general public the most expensive


These are all that I can think of, and there are probably alot more dynamics involved in the pricing of the tickets


User currently offlineOOSLC From United States of America, joined Nov 2008, 173 posts, RR: 0
Reply 9, posted (5 years 4 months 3 weeks 6 days 23 hours ago) and read 6665 times:

I just was able to book a ticket on MH91 and 90...they both stop in ARN.
1091 dollars was the total fare.
It only flies on certain days (TH, SA)

And wow the MH online booking system is awesome...not.
It's not very smart.

What days were you looking to fly?

[Edited 2009-02-26 21:59:58]

User currently offlineTraveladdict From Malaysia, joined Feb 2009, 46 posts, RR: 0
Reply 10, posted (5 years 4 months 3 weeks 6 days 23 hours ago) and read 6645 times:

OOSLC, are you flying EWR-ARN or EWR-KUL? (and the return of course). If you're going to KUL, are you also looking to have a stopover in Sweden (ie leave the airport and stay in the city for a couple of days then continue on your journey?) cuz that's what I'm having trouble with. Thanks!

Oh and Mascmo, haha sorry if I came off rude I know you were just helping, I'm just a little frustrated at MH right now!


User currently offlineL4DashTrash From United States of America, joined Jan 2009, 40 posts, RR: 0
Reply 11, posted (5 years 4 months 3 weeks 6 days 23 hours ago) and read 6626 times:



Quoting Traveladdict (Thread starter):
How the hell does this work!

Thats the 24 million dollar question


User currently offlineOOSLC From United States of America, joined Nov 2008, 173 posts, RR: 0
Reply 12, posted (5 years 4 months 3 weeks 6 days 23 hours ago) and read 6623 times:

Oh I see, you're going to stay in ARN for a couple days.
You'd have to book them separately because you are getting off the flight with the same flight number. And continuing another day. You just can't get the cheaper price if you weren't going onto KUL the same day.


User currently offlineBrilondon From Canada, joined Aug 2005, 4114 posts, RR: 1
Reply 13, posted (5 years 4 months 3 weeks 6 days 23 hours ago) and read 6617 times:



Quoting DualQual (Reply 3):
When you all figure it out you will be the only ones that have any clue how it works.

I have asked how pricing works for various routes i.e. BUF-HNL with a stop at DTW to change planes and flying from DTW-HNL. I told by NW that it is dependent on the market. This of course is crap. So even the people who sell the fares have no idea and I also asked the head of marketing at WS the same question and he said to me if I ever find out to let him know so he would know.

Quoting Mascmo (Reply 5):
Traveladdict you should really call the airline, their website does not know you want to do that. You need to speak to one of their agents I am sure they can work something out for you.

They will not be able to help since they all use the same computer to price the flights and I don't think that they could legally sell that flight.



Rush for ever; Yankees all the way!!
User currently offlineAznMadSci From United States of America, joined Dec 2007, 3658 posts, RR: 5
Reply 14, posted (5 years 4 months 3 weeks 6 days 23 hours ago) and read 6598 times:

Quoting Traveladdict (Reply 4):
But the whole thing with MH not letting me have a stopover in ARN, unless I buy two separate tickets, is that normal? I'm even willing to pay a "fee" or wtv to have that stopover but it's like NO, you MUST buy separate tickets. I flew YVR-KUL via HK with CX all the way and I was allowed to have a stopover in HK... yes I know that it required changing planes, whereas this one doesn't but I don't see how it matters?

I just want to clarify ...

When you mean stopover, do you mean spend at least one night in ARN after going through Swedish Customs and Immigration?

If that is the case, then there is no way for MH to break your journey between EWR-KUL, even though there is a stop in ARN. They sell EWR-KUL as one single segment with the stop in ARN but you cannot leave the airport or forfeit the rest of your ticket, to say the least. You can purchase EWR-ARN and ARN-KUL as two separate segments on the same ticket following the same route.

When you did YVR-KUL on CX, your ticket had a segment for YVR-HKG and a segment for HKG-KUL which allowed you to have a stopover. When MH tickets you EWR-KUL for same day travel, they will not include two separate segment coupons for EWR-ARN and ARN-KUL, they will only do one coupon specifically for EWR-KUL. To force the break at ARN, the price will be more because you will have to pay: the EWR-ARN fare, the EWR departure tax, the ARN-KUL fare, and the ARN departure tax, just to name a few.

Now if MH does not let you do EWR-ARN on one day and ARN-KUL on another day on the same ticket as two separate segments, then I don't know what to say.

Just my   

[Edited 2009-02-26 22:32:13]


The journey of life is not based on the accomplishments, but the experience.
User currently offlineFlyboy_se From Sweden, joined Feb 2000, 803 posts, RR: 5
Reply 15, posted (5 years 4 months 3 weeks 6 days 23 hours ago) and read 6568 times:

What you can do is to buy a ticket on SK or CO that also fly that route, and then a separate ticket ARN-KUL.
I know its complicated, but maybe you can get a better deal this way.
Or you can buy EWR-KUL and hope for a techical delay at ARN that requires overnight  Smile



I prefer to be crazy and happy rather than normal and bitter
User currently offlineGemuser From Australia, joined Nov 2003, 5607 posts, RR: 6
Reply 16, posted (5 years 4 months 3 weeks 6 days 17 hours ago) and read 6410 times:



Quoting AznMadSci (Reply 14):
If that is the case, then there is no way for MH to break your journey between EWR-KUL, even though there is a stop in ARN. They sell EWR-KUL as one single segment with the stop in ARN but you cannot leave the airport or forfeit the rest of your ticket, to say the least. You can purchase EWR-ARN and ARN-KUL as two separate segments on the same ticket following the same route.

If true this is quite weird! It is normal practise and has been so since at least the 1930 that pax can stop over at intermediate point. This may not be allowed on the cheapest tickets, may incur a fee or might have some specific restrictions due to the bi-lateral treaty(s) in force.

When traveling OZ-Europe we always stop over in Japan (JL) on the return, where the service is same day but not same plane and same in SIN (QF,BA), where the service is same plane.

Traveladict have you checked at full Y prices? I would be very surprised if you can't stop over on a full Y fare.

Gemuser



DC23468910;B72172273373G73873H74374475275376377L77W;A319 320321332333343;BAe146;C402;DHC6;F27;L188;MD80MD85
User currently offlinePlaneguy727 From United States of America, joined Mar 2007, 1239 posts, RR: 1
Reply 17, posted (5 years 4 months 3 weeks 6 days 15 hours ago) and read 6291 times:

In the US the majority of airlines tend to have rules at the lower fares that require connecting flights depart no more than 4 hours after arrival. I asked about this back when I worked at ATL and was told that it is an effort to force one way segments (usually higher yielding) from business travelers.

An example:

I flew MCO-ATL-DFW. At ATL I wanted to leave the airport - go into town for a meeting - return to airport and fly onward. It was cheaper to book MCO-DFW with a cx in ATL than two separate segments as long as my connection (ATL-DFW) left no more than 4 hours after I arrived.

Some airlines allow stopovers without penalty - Icelandair is the first example that comes to mind (they are actively promoting it here in NYC).

And as others have said - when the flight is same # just with tech (or 5th freedom) stop, then you aren't likely to be allowed the stopover.



I want to live in an old and converted 727...
User currently offlinePanHAM From Germany, joined May 2005, 9147 posts, RR: 29
Reply 18, posted (5 years 4 months 3 weeks 6 days 15 hours ago) and read 6263 times:

Marketing and yield managemrnt are the key words.

The cheaper the ticket is, the less you get except for the transport from A to B.

Has been saif before, but with a full fare flexible ticket in either economy or business, you may very well stop over at ARN.

If a hjourney starts at an offline station., it depends on the interlining agreement the carriers have between them, how through fares are constructed.

It is a very complex and complicated system. But don't exoect any stop-over porivileges on a cheap 800$ ticket from the US al the way to Malaysia. That is about as much as the cheapest ticket on LH is from Germany to KUL.

Money is made up front in the cabin and on regular Y fares, the cheap tickets are fill-up fares.


> yield managemrnt



E's passed on! That parrot is no more! He has ceased to be! E's expired and gone to meet 'is maker!
User currently offlineReality From United States of America, joined Apr 2007, 463 posts, RR: 0
Reply 19, posted (5 years 4 months 3 weeks 6 days 13 hours ago) and read 6182 times:



Quoting Planeguy727 (Reply 17):
when the flight is same # just with tech (or 5th freedom) stop, then you aren't likely to be allowed the stopover.

Ah, maybe that's the real reason? Maybe MH is not allowed to sell a ticket from EWR to ARN because it doesn't have the freedom right to do so?


User currently offlineAl2637 From Ireland, joined Oct 2006, 407 posts, RR: 3
Reply 20, posted (5 years 4 months 3 weeks 6 days 12 hours ago) and read 6159 times:

Airline pricing is very simple really.... supply and demand.

example (prices made up!):
BA's cheapest ticket AMS-LHR-LAX is €600
BA's cheapest ticket LHR-LAX is €800 (same LHR-LAX flight as above)

Some people find this confusing, why are BA cheapr for an AMS-LHR-LAX sector than a direct LHR-LAX sector? Simply because KL offer an AMS-LAX ticket for €600 so BA have to compete.


User currently offlineTrojanclipper From United States of America, joined Nov 2008, 63 posts, RR: 0
Reply 21, posted (5 years 4 months 3 weeks 6 days 12 hours ago) and read 6107 times:

Having worked at both the International Rate Desk and the Revenue Management Office for UA, I can tell you, that ost people you talk to on the phone will not know pricing. After a year, there were still many things I couldn't figure out. But basically, international travel is regulated by the governments of the two countries (and stop-over countries). There generally aren't unregulated airfares for international travel. So, an airline has to file a fare, with all rules with each government before being allowed to publish the fare.

Stopovers are tricky. It used to be if you missed a flight, they cancelled all downline flights on the itin. They stopped doing that because people got rerouted due to weather etc., but you still won't be able to board in a country due to security reasons if you no-show upline.

The two types of international fares are either point to point or mileage based fares. The point to poiint are the cheaper fares, but have restricted stopovers, more rules, minimum stays, etc. The mileage based fares (basically full Y, J and F or P) you can fly any valid routing with stopovers as long as you don't go over the maximum alloted miles from your origin to your most outward destination (and the most outward destination is not always the furthest point from origin, but I can't explain that without pulling my own hair out).

So, long story short, due to government agreements on each published airfare, there are stopover restictions on your flight. It's sad. The way to get around this, which I highly don't recommend, but know people who have done it is to take only carry-on luggage and fain mild illness when the plane arrives in ARN. The airline would gladly let you stay and rebook you on another flight rather than risk a diversion.


User currently offlineTraveladdict From Malaysia, joined Feb 2009, 46 posts, RR: 0
Reply 22, posted (5 years 4 months 3 weeks 6 days 11 hours ago) and read 6053 times:

Thanks for all your input guys... but let me clarify something. I haven't actually bought my ticket. So when I called MAS I asked them "If I buy a ticket from EWR-KUL, would there be extra charges should I wish to stay in ARN as a stopover?" and the agentS didn't say "oh if you buy a full Y / C / F ticket you can do so (or even with an extra fee)"... they had no clue which ticket I was going to buy, and based on that, they said NO, you cannot have that stopover in ARN. You must buy EWR-ARN, ARN-KUL for that to work.

Quoting Reality (Reply 19):
Ah, maybe that's the real reason? Maybe MH is not allowed to sell a ticket from EWR to ARN because it doesn't have the freedom right to do so?

No no, I know they have the right to do this.

Quoting Flyboy_se (Reply 15):
What you can do is to buy a ticket on SK or CO that also fly that route, and then a separate ticket ARN-KUL.

Thanks, I checked that out. CO is ridiculously expensive, whereas SK actually offers quite a bargain.


User currently offlineMOBflyer From United States of America, joined Sep 2007, 1209 posts, RR: 4
Reply 23, posted (5 years 4 months 3 weeks 6 days 11 hours ago) and read 6021 times:



Quoting Brilondon (Reply 13):
have asked how pricing works for various routes i.e. BUF-HNL with a stop at DTW to change planes and flying from DTW-HNL. I told by NW that it is dependent on the market. This of course is crap. So even the people who sell the fares have no idea and I also asked the head of marketing at WS the same question and he said to me if I ever find out to let him know so he would know.

It IS dependent on the market.... what do you mean?


User currently offlinePanHAM From Germany, joined May 2005, 9147 posts, RR: 29
Reply 24, posted (5 years 4 months 3 weeks 6 days 10 hours ago) and read 5973 times:



Quoting Al2637 (Reply 20):
Some people find this confusing, why are BA cheapr for an AMS-LHR-LAX sector than a direct LHR-LAX sector? Simply because KL offer an AMS-LAX ticket for €600 so BA have to

that is so soimply because KLM pilfers in BAs London market and BA doies the same in AMS.

I always buy cheaper C tickets here in FRA on BA than on LH.

Marketing, nothing else.

Quoting Traveladdict (Reply 22):
So when I called MAS I asked them "If I buy a ticket from EWR-KUL, would there be extra charges should I wish to stay in ARN as a stopover?" and the agentS didn't say "oh if you buy a full Y / C / F ticket you can do so (or even with an extra fee)"...

Why do you call MH? The agents are trained monkeys, they can fill out a computer mask and the screen shows what they have to tell the customer. They know nothing about the business, why it is done and how it is done, Thy may not even know that ARN is in Sweden.

Why don't you go to a good travel agent? An IATA travel agent can offer you the best fares and can answer your questions and he may even get you a stop-over. The service used to be free of charge but since the carriers don't pay commissions you may have to pay a service charge, it is worth it.



E's passed on! That parrot is no more! He has ceased to be! E's expired and gone to meet 'is maker!
25 Viscount724 : Yes they do. On a couple of random dates I checked in March, MH fares EWR-ARN are the lowest of all carriers with fares published in that market. For
26 RoyalAirMaroc : But with that logic, how in the hell do they come up with pricing for West african routes such as ACC and LOS ? Fares on BA for example are huge !
27 Vhqpa : What Fares you you looking at? I was playing around with fares and I found a MH NYC-KUL fare for USD1025 RT (Incl. Taxes) which allows 2 free stopover
28 FlyASAGuy2005 : Simply put, there isn't someone in revenue management crunching numbers. Everything is computerized and they use data from OAL, past market trends...
29 VV701 : I think that the resons for examples like this are very complex. Here it is suggested that the low BA price is to compete with the KL AMS-LAX price.
30 Rivet42 : You're forgetting that someone in AMS with oneWorld membership might well consider a competitive BA fare with a stopover for the mileage. They probab
31 Viscount724 : I believe all US and EU carriers now have complete pricing freedom in all US-EU markets thanks to the Open Skies agreement. Can anyone confirm my und
32 Mayor : In answer to your question, if you visit marketing and pricing departments for most airlines, you'll find that they use a LARGE dartboard to make thei
33 Post contains links VV701 : Those who have challenged what I said in Reply 28 are obviously either very young, have very short memories or are still living in the distant past an
34 DLD9S : I think there was just some confusion with the agent you talked to on the phone. There is a round trip S class fare from EWR to KUL that costs $558 US
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