How to Use Bucket Shop Airfares: Very Carefully
Bucket shops, or “travel consolidators,” are travel agencies who have arrangements with specific airlines to sell international tickets for considerably less than the airline’s published fares.
You can indeed save money on bucket shop fares, and experience a completely successful trip abroad. However, this segment of the travel industry contains enough landmines that you should use bucket shops only if you follow the tips given in this article.
Although financially secure vendors like Priceline may match or exceed bucket shop international discounts, and provide you with a more comfortable purchasing experience, the bucket shop option is still worth exploring. Their tickets often permit you to change your destination or dates for a fee, which Priceline “Name your own price” tickets, for example, never allow.
But, study these guidelines and proceed with caution!
How to find a reputable bucket shop:
You may see ads for bucket shop airfares in major newspapers and on the Internet. However, even though the newspaper or website may have a good reputation, the bucket shop which advertises there could be at best, disorganized, and at worst, downright dishonest.
Over the years, I have heard many tales of fly-by-night, shady bucket shops (and have had run-ins with several myself), and so I use these only if I have a solid recommendation from:
o a friend who has used the same bucket shop over time,
o a report from the Better Business Bureau, or 레플리카쇼핑몰
o an article in a respected travel journal, such as Frommer’s Budget Travel.
One of the best sources for a reliable bucket shop referral is a friend from the same ethnic group as your destination. If it’s comfortable, ask your friend to obtain the price quotation. On many routes, travelers whose families originally came from the destination country get the lowest quotes.
A Cautionary Tale: Follow these tips before using bucket shops:
o If you are reside in the U.S., just use American bucket shops. It could be very difficult to pursue a transaction that turned sour if you use a foreign travel consolidator.
o Shops tend to specialize in specific countries. The one you use for Australia is not necessarily the one you want to use for Kenya.
o Bucket shop discounts excel at Asian, Australian, Middle Eastern, eastern European, and African destinations. Discounts are less competitive to western European cities, such as Amsterdam and Paris, because airlines frequently publish specials to these destinations.