For starters, New Leaf just launched its ‘super low cost’ airline in Canada, promising flights as low as $89 one way (you will be paying for everything else, though, so be prepared.)
West Jet is now flying to new European destinations (Dublin, Glasgow) via St. John’s, Newfoundland and Halifax, Nova Scotia – and has? offered some great prices for these routes as part of its own promotional launch.
And with airlines like WOW Air and Iceland Air flying out of Canadian and U.S. departure cities, offering discounted flights to Iceland and beyond with extended layovers included at no additional cost, there’s never been a better time to be a traveller! But how do you sort through all the options available to you?
One strategy is to open 15 or so windows on your computer, and search multiple individual airlines and sites. Or, if you are like me, and prefer? a more efficient way to search, you can try an aggregate site that does the work for you. There are several of these? out there, but the one I tried most recently to source a flight to Ft. Myers, Florida, was CheapOAir.
What’s different about CheapOair?Well, for starters, while I expected cheap fares from an online service like this one, I didn’t expect personal service – as in actual human beings. Not only are trained people actually manning the phones if you prefer to talk to a person when you are searching or booking, but I actually received a personal phone call after my trip to ask how I found the service, and to offer me a discount on my next flight. Nice touch, this human touch! (I learned later that bridging? the gap between strictly online services and old-school travel agencies was the founding principle behind CheapOair).
The other thing that is great about CheapOair is that it fully integrates with several airlines, including Air Canada, American Airlines and Spirit (a low-cost US airline), meaning that not only can you book a flight through CheapO, but you can also choose your seats, pay for checked bags, etc at the same time. A lot of other third-party sites don’t allow you to do this, and it can become a bit more of a pain when you want to finalize those details with the airline directly since you have to do it separately.
But ultimately, it all comes down to the numbers sometimes. And I have to say, that after searching for and comparing my Ft. Myers flight with other aggregate sites, and checking directly with the airlines themselves, CheapOair did offer the best price. (something they do guarantee, but it was nice to see it reflected in the actual numbers!)
So if you are the kind of traveller who likes to make the most of their time (and money) on the ground at your destination, not wasting it either looking for – or paying too much for – your flight, you’ll want to add CheapOAir to your list of online booking bookmarks. I certainly have.
TIP: For more tips on how to save time, money, and more, click on the Travel Tips tab at the top of the site, and browse the drop down menu. You’ll find tips on everything from packing to travel insurance.
Jane Canapini is a member of the Travel Media Association of Canada and the North American Travel Journalists Association. She established GrownupTravels.com in 2014 to share information and tips based on personal experience so her readers could get the most out of their travels.