The Five Stages of Booking a Flight

At last! It’s time! What you’ve been waiting for, the moment your whole life as been leading up to, booking that flight that is going to be the start of your life, give your travel blog the boost it needs, and send you home tanned, thin, and ever-so-cultured.

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But first you have the emotional rollercoaster of booking flights. These aren’t the kind of reservations you were anticipating.

1. The carefree moment of ‘to hell with it, I’m booking’

Probably the best part of the whole process this. Finally, after months of umming and aaahing it is finally time to splash the cash. You’ve been building nerve for weeks, flipping through Skyscanner, Expedia, Kayak, and lots of individual airlines pages. You’ve cleared your cookies, gone into incognito mode, and readied yourself for the big purchase. This is it, you are on the edge of the bungee platform, VISA card in hand ready to take the plunge.

2. Cold reality

Now that it’s booking time, it’s like the entire internet can sense you have a card in your hand and cash to burn. Prices are rising before your eyes and every search seems to be driving the price higher. A flight which was $400 yesterday suddenly costs $675. What sorcery is this?!

3. Resignation

“Well, I guess I’ll just have to spend that bit more then, must be the going price.” Followed by convincing yourself that the reason for this price rise is that time is running out to book (usually 6 months in advance), and that its only a little more money, right?

4. Temptation

Then it happens. Some internet travel agent, with a dodgy website in broken English has the flight you want, and for $50 less than you were going to spend in the first place… You’re pretty sure you’ve heard of this company, the name rings a bell, right? You click around their website fruitlessly in the hope that something on there will calm your beating heart and put all your fears at ease. Suddenly the course is clear to, the daredevil’s game. You’re going to wait a couple of days, watch the price fluctuate and NAIL THEM when it drops.

5. Acceptance

“I’ll just book through the airline website then.” You’ve heard too many horror stories, and frankly your Portuguese isn’t good enough to be ringing customer service from the road of some hamlet in Brazil. You take the plunge, spend more than it ever looked like it was going to cost and drink deep from that bottle of beer next you. You don’t even remember having opened the bottle during stage two, but there it is. Sun, sea, sand and dusty back-country roads here you come!!

Do these experiences chime with your own? Am I the only clown on the internet who is serially getting ripped off? Let me know.


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