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Has anyone else had this experience with Flightsbird ?

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Has anyone else had this experience with Flightsbird ?

I don't see any other reviews of Flightsbird on TripAdvisor, so wanted to report what happened to me yesterday when attempting to book a flight online:

1. On the website Momondo, I found a fare for the trip I was booking that was far lower than other fares, and also lower than the same flights listed on the airline's own website (United). It was provided by a company named Flightsbird.

2. While I worried it might be "too good to be true," I clicked through to the site, booked online, got a confirmation email, and thought I was all set.

3. Within a couple hours, the company emailed me and asked me to call them.

4. I called the company and spoke to one of their agents, who informed me that the fare I had gotten had "changed" and was now about $300 higher round trip (for 2 people). While I'm aware that published fares can change, the agent tried to sell me hard and suggested that was still the cheapest rate. Given the circumstances and the fact that I can easily look up flights on dozens of websites, he was overly aggressive and persistent. While on the phone with him, I looked on Google Flights, and Flightsbird's new $300-more-expensive rate was NOT the cheapest rate. Needless to say, I declined.

But THIS is the worst part of it:

5. Thirty minutes later, in checking Momondo again, I saw the SAME EXACT (to the penny) fare for the exact SAME EXACT flight from Flightsbird, again!

I will let you draw your own conclusions about this experience. I also will no longer be using Momondo to look for fares.

39 replies to this topic
Lancashire, United...
Destination Expert
for Playa Blanca
Level Contributor
40,863 posts
62 reviews
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1. Re: Has anyone else had this experience with Flightsbird ?

It's got nothing to do with Momondo. It's the shonky third party supplier that hasn't got live pricing.

Silver Spring...
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3,760 posts
10 reviews
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2. Re: Has anyone else had this experience with Flightsbird ?

Agree - they didn’t have live pricing. When they went to book your ticket with UA, they presented you with the correct pricing, which was higher than shown on their webpage. It probably was the cheapest rate.

You were suckered in. Next time, book directly with the airline if you want to see correct pricing.

Edited: 24 January 2018, 23:30
Wales, United...
Destination Expert
for Bargain Travel, Cruises, Swansea, Cardiff, Carmarthenshire, Neath, Port Talbot
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71,176 posts
470 reviews
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3. Re: Has anyone else had this experience with Flightsbird ?

This is all too common, I'm afraid. The sites like this one, which I can't remember previosuly hearing about, so thanks for the warning, don't have live pricing and hope to lur epeople in with low prices so that their agents can speak to people and persuade them to buy at a higher cost.

They look to convince travellers that prices are going up all the time, and if the hesitate they will end up apying even more. It's also a convincer to tell people that if they don't want to proceed at this highe rprice, it will take several days for the money to be returned, and who knows what the fare will be by then the way things are going (no, honestly, I don't write their scripts!).

Avoid Momondo if you want to, but you will still run the risk of exactly the same thing happening again, but through other sites.

Oregon
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3,909 posts
26 reviews
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4. Re: Has anyone else had this experience with Flightsbird ?

If you look carefully at their site you actually made a booking "request", not an actual booking. That's how they get away with this bait and switch.

Now that you know how most of these companies work, please book directly with the airlines. You will find that it's very rare for a third party to actually beat their price.

4 posts
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5. Re: Has anyone else had this experience with Flightsbird ?

Thank you all so much for these (prompt) replies. I love Momondo's ease of use, but I noticed that other websites I trust (like CheapAir and Google Flights) show only flights from the airlines themselves, and not from these separate booking companies. Kayak (another site I trust) does include fares from booking companies, but I've heard of most of them and so perhaps they pre-screen them in a way that Momondo does not. I don't know this to be the case -- just speculating -- but I'll stick with these other sites from now on. Thank you again.

Lancashire, United...
Destination Expert
for Playa Blanca
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40,863 posts
62 reviews
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6. Re: Has anyone else had this experience with Flightsbird ?

Do you mean Cheapoair? They're an OTA whereas Momondo is a meta search engine. Completely different things. Kayak don't pre-screen. They have some of the shonkiest OTAs around linked on there.

Just avoid all 3rd parties for bookings. Find flights on Momondo, Kayak etc but then go direct to the airline.

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7. Re: Has anyone else had this experience with Flightsbird ?

I actually meant CheapAir.com, NOT CheapoAir, I recommend CheapAir as they make it easy to find round-trip fares using different airlines for each leg.

Lancashire, United...
Destination Expert
for Playa Blanca
Level Contributor
40,863 posts
62 reviews
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8. Re: Has anyone else had this experience with Flightsbird ?

Same applies. Cheapair.com are an OTA not a search engine. They're just another of hundreds of third party booking sites. They trade pretty much the same by maintaining the right to confirm or deny the booking for up to 24 hrs after you've booked. Better to book direct and avoid having 2 sets of terms and conditions to be bound by.

southern england
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498 posts
87 reviews
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9. Re: Has anyone else had this experience with Flightsbird ?

I think the OP is set on using an OTA as it appears this method saves so much money , not something I would consider , but each to his own.

At least you don't seem to be out of pocket on this particular booking.

Albany, New York
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224 posts
66 reviews
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10. Re: Has anyone else had this experience with Flightsbird ?

I'd definitely recommend searching on TA for the problems folks run into when booking through third party sites, especially whichever your favorites might be. Some of the sites like Google Flights can be great to search flights across different carriers and see what options are available, but it can be well worth it to book directly with the airline to save yourself from many of the customer service related problems that you can face when problems arise and you have booked via a third party.

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