BY Christopherson Business Travel |

Free Public Online Travel Sites? – Read the Fine Print

There has been a significant amount of press regarding the Department of Transportation’s new regulations that now require airlines to advertise full ticket prices on websites, including all government taxes and additional fees. But did you know that public online booking tools can sneak their booking fees into the “additional fees” category?
This is to say–service fees are not always listed clearly for the consumer. In many cases, the service fee is only mentioned in the fine print. Charges under “government taxes and additional fees” are not inclusive to fees imposed just by airlines. And online service fees can range anywhere from $6.99-$10.99 for simple domestic fares up to $50 for deposits on air, hotel, and car rental “packages.”
One public online site charges $30 per ticket any time a customer needs a ticket reissued. And in some cases there is a “Processing Service Fee” that a company will retain to compensate themselves for the processing of your travel reservation through their systems.
Bottom line: The proof is in the fine print. Don’t forget to read it.