zrs70
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What Is Most Important When Choosing A Flight?

Sun Mar 20, 2011 7:36 pm

We all have factors when choosing a flight:

Airline
Route
Equipment
Price
Upgrade Availability
Mile Earning
Onboard comfort
Onboard service

Some argue they they would never pay a dime to upgrade ("Save the money and buy a good meal at your destination).
Others would mortgage their homes before flying in coach on a long flight.
Some go out of their way to earn miles.
Some go out of their way to fly specific aircraft (or to avoid specific aircraft).
Some will only fly if it earns elite miles.

What are your criteria?
17 year airliners.net vet! 2000-2016
 
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SirThomas
Posts: 114
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RE: What Is Most Important When Choosing A Flight?

Sun Mar 20, 2011 8:00 pm

Well, for me it's mainly in this order:

1. Equipment
2. Class & Comfort (Generally like to spend a few pennies more to enjoy a comfy seat)  
3. Route - I normally want a non stop flight, but if there's a plane I haven't been on or a place I could spend a few hours in, I'll happily do so.

Apart from that I really couldn't care less as long as I get there, however I have a phobia of LCC's... The little irritating little things like having to buy drinks, go to crappy terminals and generally shoddy service put me off I wont lie! 

Tom
Flown On: A319/A320/A321/A332/A333/AT45/734/736/738/744/DH8D/T204/T154/IL62/T134/IL-18/An-24
 
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Aeroflot777
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RE: What Is Most Important When Choosing A Flight?

Sun Mar 20, 2011 8:06 pm

For me:

1) Airline loyalty
2) Price
3) Schedule
4) Equipment
 
dumbell2424
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RE: What Is Most Important When Choosing A Flight?

Sun Mar 20, 2011 8:12 pm

1. Price
2. Airline-US loyal, but if DL is $50+ cheaper and better times, I'm gonna pick DL
3. Route-If an extra stop can save me a few bucks, eh.

Could really care less about
Equipment
Upgrade Availability
Mile Earning
Onboard comfort
Onboard service
 
signol
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RE: What Is Most Important When Choosing A Flight?

Sun Mar 20, 2011 8:29 pm

For me:
1. Departure airport. If I can fly out of my local airport and save 2+ hours getting to a London airport, I'll pay more (£100 more is my "think about it" threshold)
2. Price
3. Route - I like new routes, interesting connecting cities where I'll hopefully have a few hours to visit the city itself.
4. FF points. I'm a (low) member on the 3 main alliances, so as long as I get points on one I'm happy. I'd still prefer the cash in fare saving, or interesting route though!

signol
Flights booked: NWI-AMS-JNB-DUR, JNB-AMS-NWI
 
YYZflyer
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RE: What Is Most Important When Choosing A Flight?

Sun Mar 20, 2011 8:32 pm

1. Timing
2. Price
3. Equipment and Airline are about equal

If I can get a connecting flight or different airline/aircraft for about the same price or just a bit more (+$50-$100) I will choose that over the others.
Avoid hangovers, stay drunk.
 
Speedbird741
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RE: What Is Most Important When Choosing A Flight?

Sun Mar 20, 2011 9:01 pm

Airline loyalty
Equipment
Engines on the equipment - I like RB211s 

Speedbird741
Boa noite Faro, Air Portugal 257 climbing flight level 340
 
planeguy727
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RE: What Is Most Important When Choosing A Flight?

Sun Mar 20, 2011 9:02 pm

1. Departing airport
2. Airline (or alliance partner)
3. Mileage earning (see #2)
4. Number of connections (I often intentionally book them) / Route
5. Equipment
6. Upgrade options
I want to live in an old and converted 727...
 
RJLover
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RE: What Is Most Important When Choosing A Flight?

Sun Mar 20, 2011 9:30 pm

As an airline employee, travelling on standby....

1. Airline
2. Number of open seats on flights (and number of standbys ahead of me)
3. Routing
4. Equipment Type
Last Flight(s): YHZ-YYZ//YYZ-YHZ Next Flight(s): YHZ-YHM//YHM-YUL-YHZ
 
blueflyer
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RE: What Is Most Important When Choosing A Flight?

Sun Mar 20, 2011 10:11 pm

Short-haul
1) My personal black list (no AA MD80 ever)
2) Time in transit
3) Airline
4) Airport

Long-haul
1) Cabin comfort
2) Airline
3) Time in transit
4) Departure/arrival time
Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has no clothes.
 
FRAIAD
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RE: What Is Most Important When Choosing A Flight?

Sun Mar 20, 2011 10:26 pm

1. Price (I'm a student, what should I do  ) and *Alliance loyalty (miles). I'm willing to pay more for a flight that gets me miles but if the price difference is too big I go for the cheaper one.
2. Schedule/overall travel time
3. Equipment (can have a much bigger influence if it's something really special)
 
carbon787
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RE: What Is Most Important When Choosing A Flight?

Sun Mar 20, 2011 11:30 pm

1/ Departing Airport
2/ Number of stops to my destination, ie a more direct connection/flight (the less the better)
3/ Price
4/ Airline
5/ Seat comfort, on long hauls we mainly fly business class

Not too fussed about the equipment, I do have my preferences but it usually is not a deciding factor.
 
exFATboy
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RE: What Is Most Important When Choosing A Flight?

Mon Mar 21, 2011 3:49 am

It's hard for me to rank my selection criteria, since they're interconnected - for example, "price" includes transportation to and from the airport, and that brings schedule into play since at some times of day, getting to JFK is more expensive and difficult than EWR, while at others it's pretty much a wash. Since I don't have a car and don't have any friends with cars, even the amount of luggage bears on the "total price", since if I can't go by public transportation a car service to EWR is much cheaper than JFK or LGA (I live in Jersey City).

So I'd say it roughly goes like this:

(1) All-in price, including travel to/from the airport and baggage fees if applicable

(2) Schedule (after its effect on price), especially as it affects travel on the far end of the trip and travel time (if price isn't in play) to and from the airport...this means EWR first, then JFK, then LGA, unless a car service is involved, then reverse LGA and JFK.

(3) FF program consideration - who do I need miles on to get to an award? Am I near earning status on someone?

(4) Equpment, part 1 - do I get to experience a new plane type? If so, that's a tiebreaker.

(5) Airline - usually this is decided by #3, but if that doesn't make the decision clear, who offers the best comfort and amenities, like IFE, snacks, etc. (This one tends to favour JetBlue.) There's also a "bias" here in that I really don't like Southwest, unless it's a very short flight (say, LAS-SAN or LAS-LAX), and have no actual desire to ever experience Spirit.

(6) Connecting airport, if applicable - avoid ATL at the height of the thunderstorm season, ORD, DTW, MSP in winter, MIA anytime, etc.

(7) Equipment, part 2 - avoidance, I don't like CRJ-200s, and if I have a larger carry-on will avoid MadDogs (I like MD-80s, but if I have to skip one to miss a gate check, so be it)

Now all that's for domestic or Western European travel, if I was traveling in more exotic (well, to me) parts of the world getting to add new airlines to my list would be higher up the list, and I'd even pay (somewhat) more to add airplane types I might never get a chance to experience again...Russian or Chinese types, DC-10 (Biman?) or MD-11, etc.
 
PITingres
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RE: What Is Most Important When Choosing A Flight?

Mon Mar 21, 2011 1:07 pm

Schedule, price, and routing are my primary criteria. Schedule and price are interconnected and I can't really say that one is more important than the other. Routing is less important than schedule / price, except that there are some routings that I won't fly.

After looking at schedule, price, routing, if there are alternatives that are within maybe $25 or so of one another, I'll look at airline and aircraft type.
Fly, you fools! Fly!
 
EL-AL
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Joined: Tue Oct 09, 2001 8:29 am

RE: What Is Most Important When Choosing A Flight?

Mon Mar 21, 2011 2:48 pm

95% price.
4% time and dates availability.
1% everything else.
every day is a good day to fly
 
CXB77L
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RE: What Is Most Important When Choosing A Flight?

Mon Mar 21, 2011 2:59 pm

1. Price - but only to a certain extent. I won't just go for the cheapest, if it means I can pay a little more to get the airline/aircraft I want, I'd do it without hesitation. It's only when there's a significant (more than 10%) difference in price that I would consider choosing the cheaper option. I'd also avoid LCCs unless there's no other reasonable choice.
2. Airline
3. Equipment
.
.
.
.
4. Schedule - I can work around the airline's schedule to get the plane I want.
5. On board comfort
6. Service
7. Food


The following don't factor into the equation at all:

Mile earnings - I'm not a member of any frequent flier program
Potential upgrades - probably no chance of that happening to me as I'm not in any airline loyalty programs
IFE - window would do me fine
Boeing 777 fanboy
 
andz
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RE: What Is Most Important When Choosing A Flight?

Mon Mar 21, 2011 5:13 pm

Well, in the third world things are a little different.

1: route
2: schedule
3: price
4: airline

Anything else (such as 738 vs 319 etc) is irrelevant because it just causes inconvenience.
After Monday and Tuesday even the calendar says WTF...
 
ZKOJH
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RE: What Is Most Important When Choosing A Flight?

Tue Mar 22, 2011 2:01 pm

mine would be:

1 . Price
2. Airline (has to be Star Alliance or nothing)
3. Aircraft type , mainly Boeing, but love the A380..!!
4. Schedule
Vietnam time..
 
initious
Posts: 937
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RE: What Is Most Important When Choosing A Flight?

Tue Mar 22, 2011 3:42 pm

I actually had a similar post about this back in June.

Most Important Aspect When Choosing An Airline (by initious Jun 28 2010 in Aviation Polls)

My answers can be found in the post. In summary, I would go for an airline that offers me more legroom, reasonable prices, good IFE and good food. Best is they are in Star Alliance.  
One way I will fly around the world!
 
HT
Posts: 5857
Joined: Sat May 07, 2005 6:20 am

RE: What Is Most Important When Choosing A Flight?

Tue Mar 22, 2011 11:26 pm

If I intend to fly from A to B I am not considering to fly from C or to D instead (unless official alternatives and still convenient to reach).
Having stated that, my main priority is "Timings / Schedule".

-HT
Carpe diem ! Life is too short to waste your time ! Keep in mind, that today is the first day of the rest of your life !
 
jetblue777
Posts: 1197
Joined: Fri Jul 17, 2009 4:13 pm

RE: What Is Most Important When Choosing A Flight?

Tue Mar 22, 2011 11:49 pm

For international flights:

1) Equipment/Whether A/C has IFE or not
2) Airline reputation (service, meals, etc) (I usually go with 5* or 4*)
3) Price
4) Star Alliance
5) Departing from JFK
6) Timing
7) Never AA (Mom's Rules. She hates AA with a passion. But I might fly with AA this November just to try it out)


Domestic Flights:

1) Airline reputation
2) Price
3) Star Alliance or Delta
4) Departing JFK or LGA, never EWR
5) HAS to be a morning flight
6) Never AA


and the more connections = the better. Unless it's a longhaul flight where all I want is to get to my final destination ASAP.
It's a cultural thing.
 
sw733
Posts: 5302
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RE: What Is Most Important When Choosing A Flight?

Wed Mar 23, 2011 1:44 am

1) Alliance loyalty (in my case, Oneworld)

2) Equipment (mostly IFE related, but also seats/comfort)

3) Times

4) Connection airports (since I live in MCI...i.e. when going to HKG, I would rather transfer in SFO over LAX...weather at that time of year also has to do with it. January? DFW over ORD)

5) Food experience in past


Price - depends if it's for work or for personal. Personal, #2...Work, #4 or so.
 
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cpd
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RE: What Is Most Important When Choosing A Flight?

Wed Mar 23, 2011 2:07 am

For me it is:

1. Airline loyalty
2. Comfort / equipment / Food onboard / aircraft type
3. Price

For instance, if there is a B747, B777, A340-500/600 or A380 serving the same route, I'll try for the A380 first, then the other two Airbuses, and the Boeings last.
 
FlyDeltaJets87
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RE: What Is Most Important When Choosing A Flight?

Wed Mar 23, 2011 2:11 am

Price is the ultimate factor, but I usually stick with DL as long as they're pretty comparable to everyone else (especially since I'm Medallion and save on checked-bag fees). After that, it varies from trip to trip. Sometimes schedule is more important so I have to base my itinerary off of that. For example, I'm flying home over Easter weekend. I needed a Thursday evening flight out and a Sunday evening flight back. No getting around it. If my schedule isn't a factor, then I base it off of equipment type. I'll avoid 50 seat CRJs if at all possible, but will go out of my way to fly domestic widebodies or to get mainline over regional jets. Last summer when I flew up to Detroit to visit my girlfriend, I took an early morning flight and then waited around DTW for a few hours while she was at work just so I could get the 777-200 on ATL-DTW. Connecting hub and the time of year plays a factor as well. I'll connect in ATL over DTW in the winter time, but vise-versa in the summer time, and if I have a chance to connect in a new airport, I'll often take advantage of that opportunity as well, as long as the schedule or price difference isn't an issue. If I can fly a new airline, I may do that (two years ago, B6 and DL were the same price on an MCO-LGA ticket, so I gave JetBlue a try - great experience). All that said, IFE is basically a non-factor for me. The window is all I need.
"Let's Roll"- Todd Beamer, United Airlines Flight 93, Sept. 11, 2001
 
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Coal
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RE: What Is Most Important When Choosing A Flight?

Wed Mar 23, 2011 8:28 am

1. Alliance (Star Alliance or SkyTeam... I try to avoid oneworld at all costs)
2. Departure / arrival time
3. Price
4. Airport (I try to fly out of SHA instead of PVG, as SHA is much closer, but PVG is really the only choice for int'l travel)
5. Equipment (I generally don't care, but I avoid regional jets at all costs - luckily not much of that in Asia, since it's mostly widebodies here)

Cheers
Coal
Nxt Flts: MI RGN-SIN | SQ SIN-RGN-SIN | CX SIN-HKG-PVG | SQ PVG-SIN
 
BlatantEcho
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RE: What Is Most Important When Choosing A Flight?

Wed Mar 23, 2011 2:53 pm

#1 is always fight duration or number of stops. I love planes, but i want to get to my destination as quickly as possible.
#2 is related, but it's distance off the great circle. Really really don't like to make large diversions off the shortest path
#3 is alliance. Usually Delta, but Qantas or etc is fine, all adds up the miles.
#4 is equipment. I look, but domestic legs getting stuck on an A320... what are you going to do?


Absolute #1 is time en route. Direct flights I will pay plenty extra to get on. 8.5 hour transcon with a potential delay on two flights vs 6.5 hr direct flight right on the great circle? I'll always pay extra for the 2hours and direct flight.


Price just isn't as important as time and hassle. (and I'm fully a working guy, pay for all my travel, and I travel a lot).
They're not handing trophies out today
 
RamblinMan
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RE: What Is Most Important When Choosing A Flight?

Wed Mar 23, 2011 6:21 pm

Ah, well, it depends on the type of trip, and what else I have to do that day. Recently I took DL MDW-DTW-BNA over a myriad of nonstops for two reasons...mileage run and a last ride on a DC-9-40. If my girlfriend is with me it's WN above all else for the free bags...damn liquid rules.

I've also taken US to CUN and MBJ solely to get on the 762, but after several egregious displays of incompetence by that airline my new rule is...avoid US at all costs.
 
MSPNWA
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RE: What Is Most Important When Choosing A Flight?

Wed Mar 23, 2011 7:06 pm

I'll post my priorities when booking a domestic U.S. flight in economy. I'll fly just about any airline at least once, so here's my list with that aside.

1. Price - it's most important, but it is relative to the other factors though. I won't just fly the cheapest if the prices are within 20-25% of each other. And fees play a big part in this now.

2. Equipment - I avoid anything smaller than an EMB170 at all costs. Head-to-head I'll pay more for a larger plane. And I'll even go a little out of my way to fly a larger, more comfortable, or more uncommon aircraft. It depends on what interest me.

3. Onboard comfort - this is similar to equipment, but I'll lean towards an airplane and airline that offers a more comfortable or entertaining flight, again even if I go a little out of my way to get it. For example last summer, for a little more cash, I flew MSP-ORD-SFO on UA to snag a 747 with IFE, Ch. 9, and a very comfortable economy seat.

4. Onboard service - even in economy it can the difference. For example on an MSP flight to Chicago, I'm more likely to get service on UA or WN vs. DL. Or if I want to fly to HNL, ATL-HNL and it's free meals in coach is a plus for that flight.

5. Route - isn't too important as long I get to where I need to go. I don't mind connecting, unless it's at a hub prone to problems. So I'm okay with non-stops, 1-stops, or even multi-stops. And unless arriving at my destination at a certain time is critical, an uncommon occurrence, a general morning/afternoon/evening choice is good enough for me.

NA. Miles/upgrades - not a member of a program yet.
 
jetblue777
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RE: What Is Most Important When Choosing A Flight?

Wed Mar 23, 2011 8:54 pm

Quoting sw733 (Reply 21):
weather at that time of year also has to do with it. January? DFW

I agree. Last month, we chose to connect in ATL (DL) over ORD (UA) because I just had that feeling that ORD would be messed up with all the snow..which was a great choice because they had that huge blizzard on the day of our departure! PHEW.
It's a cultural thing.
 
dc9northwest
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RE: What Is Most Important When Choosing A Flight?

Wed Mar 23, 2011 9:13 pm

It's a linear combination of:

Airline (Skyteam unless no other choice or interesting equipment or much cheaper fare for a more convenient flight)
Equipment (e.g. always a DC-9/MD series over a 32S or 737)
Price (but I won't choose the cheapest necessarily if another fare gives more miles)
FF Miles (so I can get "free" flights every once in a while)
Route (e.g. I don't particularly like CDG, but I'll do it for equipment)

I wouldn't say one of these is that more important than any other... I tend to evaluate the whole choice, not parts of it.
 
BD338
Posts: 576
Joined: Sun Jul 04, 2010 3:00 am

RE: What Is Most Important When Choosing A Flight?

Thu Mar 24, 2011 3:10 am

Generally my choice is driven by:

1) Schedule - including reasonable connection times (enough time to get through customs and not have to run at sprint speeds to get to the next gate for example)

2) Price

3) a) Southwest for US Domestic - several advantages to me, including a zero chance of ending up on a regional jet. If not (about 5% of the time), usually DL.
3) b) Delta first choice for international travel (carefully selecting flights to avoid 763 TATL until the upgrades come along), UA/CO second choice and avoiding US Airways at all costs. Sorry AA, you don't seem to go where I want to go international.

4) Choice of connecting airport if applicable. As a rule, avoid JFK, ATL and PHL. EWR has it's bad moments as well. Always try and route a European connection through AMS.

5) FF mileage


Items I don't care about:

1) On board meals.
2) IFE

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