BY Krista Ercin-Maurer |

Lowest Airfare; Guarantee or Fiction

Can anyone really offer you the lowest airfare for your flights? You bet, but you need to understand what that means and what it doesn’t mean. Most travelers that shop the various online travel sites have experienced frustration and confusion when a low airfare is available one moment and gone the next or they find a lower airfare after they made their purchase. That’s why a travel management company with the right tools and knowledge can guarantee the lowest fare. They work with and understand the following. Airline inventory control and yield management departments have created a science of maximizing revenue for each flight and every seat on those flights. Based on inventory history, which is defined as the actual load factor at the time of departure, airlines track and model the performance of each flight , each day of the week in the summer versus the fall and based on this data create a yield management model for that specific flight. The model includes increasing or decreasing fare availability as certain inventory triggers are reached irrespective of how near or far away the date of departure. If demand is high there is little change, however, if demand is low then the lowest airfare can change two or three times daily.
Additionally, there are differing distribution channels used by each airline that affect the available content (seat & fares) based on fees charged the airline for each booking by the distribution company. These distribution companies include Global Distribution Systems (GDS) (Apollo, Sabre, Worldspan and Amadeus), airline hosted web sites, online travel sites (Orbitz, Expedia and Travelocity), and auction web sites like Priceline. Each of these distribution channels have differing agreements relating to what content the airline will provide in relation to the cost of distribution. In other words, some sites have the lowest fares of an airline and others may not. A new entrant into the online airfare pricing options are the metasearch engines such as Kayak and Voyji. These guys create what is being referred to as virtual databases. They take the travelers request, pass it to differing travel databases and then compile the results as a list of options that when selected the traveler is “deep linked” to the web site page offering the airfare. I’ll stop here because I’m sure you get the picture.
With all that said, Christopherson Andavo Travel employs the use of 3 GDSs and industry tools that search all travel databases for the lowest fare available at the time of request. This in-depth fare search is performed with each request to your Christopherson Andavo Travel team; and this we guarantee.