Go Back  FlyerTalk Forums > Miles&Points > Airlines and Mileage Programs > American Airlines | AAdvantage
Reload this Page >

Booking Multi-City vs. One Way - Same Itinerary

Booking Multi-City vs. One Way - Same Itinerary

Old Dec 9, 19, 1:02 pm
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Feb 2014
Location: PHL, LHR
Posts: 157
Booking Multi-City vs. One Way - Same Itinerary

So I'm booking a return flight SAN --> PHL for family of 3 and want to do a quick hop then ride on the 788 out of LAX. If I book a standard one way fare - it's $301 (see screengrab). And if I book "Multi City" and create the identical itinerary, it's $255. Other than the obvious cost savings - are their any other advantages/disadvantages to booking this way? What am I missing?


PHLondoner is offline  
Old Dec 9, 19, 1:23 pm
  #2  
 
Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: RDU <|> MMX
Programs: AA EXP 2MM, SK EBS
Posts: 6,898
Originally Posted by PHLondoner View Post
So I'm booking a return flight SAN --> PHL for family of 3 and want to do a quick hop then ride on the 788 out of LAX. If I book a standard one way fare - it's $301 (see screengrab). And if I book "Multi City" and create the identical itinerary, it's $255. Other than the obvious cost savings - are their any other advantages/disadvantages to booking this way? What am I missing?
Can you actually click through to ticket the multi-city?

Many times when searching this way, aa.com will see cheaper fare basis's available on each segment individually, however when you try to combine these to book it it will error out or revert to the higher fare you're seeing when searching one-way.
JJeffrey is offline  
Old Dec 9, 19, 1:24 pm
  #3  
 
Join Date: Apr 2019
Posts: 2,124
Multi-city search bypasses married segment inventory checks and it's giving you an incorrect fare quote. There's N bucket available on individual segments, but there is only S bucket availability on the married segments (which is what the fare quote should be based on). Both fares being quoted are single through fares (not broken fares). So it's incorrectly quoting a NVAGZNM3 fare in the multi-city search case, while the one-way search gives you the correct SUAGZNM3 fare based on married segment bucket availability.
xliioper is offline  
Old Dec 9, 19, 1:31 pm
  #4  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Feb 2014
Location: PHL, LHR
Posts: 157
Originally Posted by xliioper View Post
Multi-city search bypasses married segment inventory checks and it's giving you an incorrect fare quote. There's N bucket available on individual segments, but there is only S bucket availability on the married segments (which is what the fare quote should be based on). Both fares being quoted are single through fares (not broken fares). So it's incorrectly quoting a NVAGZNM3 fare in the multi-city search case, while the one-way search gives you the correct SUAGZNM3 fare based on married segment bucket availability.
When you say "incorrect" - from who's perspective? The $150 savings looks fantastically correct to me. Am I the beneficiary of a glitch? Did I break the Matrix?
PHLondoner is offline  
Old Dec 9, 19, 1:38 pm
  #5  
 
Join Date: Apr 2019
Posts: 2,124
Originally Posted by PHLondoner View Post
When you say "incorrect" - from who's perspective? The $150 savings looks fantastically correct to me. Am I the beneficiary of a glitch? Did I break the Matrix?
As previous poster noted, you probably won't actually be able to book this as the system will check the married segment bucket availability when you go and attempt to purchase the fare. It will kick you up to the higher S fare when it discovers there is no N bucket availability in the married segments. Funny that you should mention the Matrix as this is likely an ITA bug as the ITA Matrix search has the same issues and most of the carriers have licensed their fare search software --

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ITA_Software

"ITA's first product was an airfare search and pricing system called QPX. This system has been and is used by travel companies such as Bing Travel, CheapTickets, Kayak.com, and Orbitz, and by airlines such as Alitalia, American, ANA, Cape Air, Delta Air Lines, United Airlines, US Airways, and Virgin Atlantic."

Delta has dealt with the bug by disabling the ability to combine multiple segments on a single fare when performing multi-city searches on it's website when the connection is valid (less than 4 hours for domestic).

Last edited by xliioper; Dec 9, 19 at 1:49 pm
xliioper is offline  
Old Dec 9, 19, 1:46 pm
  #6  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Feb 2014
Location: PHL, LHR
Posts: 157
Yes it's definitely glitching out. It lets me select the flights - enter passenger info, then when I hit continue it loops me back to a "Choose a different flight or fare" error message and makes me start all over. Does this happen often?
PHLondoner is offline  
Old Dec 9, 19, 1:50 pm
  #7  
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: Washington, DC
Programs: AA Executive Platinum/Million Miler, Marriott Titanium Elite-Lifetime, Hilton Gold
Posts: 1,594
Originally Posted by PHLondoner View Post
Yes it's definitely glitching out. It lets me select the flights - enter passenger info, then when I hit continue it loops me back to a "Choose a different flight or fare" error message and makes me start all over. Does this happen often?
Yes, when trying to use a multi-city search to circumvent married segment logic.
USFlyerUS is offline  
Old Dec 9, 19, 4:30 pm
  #8  
 
Join Date: Dec 2014
Location: New York City
Programs: American Airlines Executive Platinum, Marriott Rewards Platinum Premier Elite
Posts: 1,562
Call into web support and have them issue the tickets performing an inventory override in AACoRN (the software they use as a GUI for Sabre.) They have done this for me a few times after I pointed out the website was showing a fare but I couldn't purchase it. You may have to be very persistent for hang up and call again.
AA100k likes this.
donotblink is offline  
Old Dec 9, 19, 4:44 pm
  #9  
A FlyerTalk Posting Legend
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Posts: 41,184
Originally Posted by USFlyerUS View Post
Yes, when trying to use a multi-city search to circumvent married segment logic.
Not just married segment, but trying to avoid paying a through fare will cause it

If booking A-C via B , the fare of A-C may be more expensive than the sum of A-B + B-c even if inventory availability is the same regardless
Dave Noble is offline  
Old Dec 9, 19, 5:32 pm
  #10  
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: PHL (kinda, no airport is really close)
Programs: AA Exp (2020 is first and last year). Enterprise Platinum woo-hoo!
Posts: 3,317
Would it be a violation of T&C to book the segments separately as one-way's? I realize that carries a risk of not being protected in IRROPS. But it seems fundamentally different than the hidden city trick, where you're lying about where you're actually traveling.

I had posted in another thread that I was flying PHL-LAS on Monday, but needed to be in DTW on Sunday and booked a PHL-DTW round trip, with the return arriving in PHL on Monday a couple hours before the departure to LAS. (As it happened, when I did a separate search just from curiosity, it showed that DTW-PHL-LAS with the flights I was actually on was a valid routing.) Replies to my post about that trip said that I would be protected on the PHL-LAS flight if my DTW-PHL flight was delayed. Would this routing be any different, if the OP's SAN-LAX flight was delayed? Of course it would knock him off his desired LAX-PHL hop on the 789, but at least he'd get there.

Last edited by redtop43; Dec 9, 19 at 11:24 pm Reason: clarity
redtop43 is offline  
Old Dec 9, 19, 6:09 pm
  #11  
A FlyerTalk Posting Legend
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Posts: 41,184
Originally Posted by redtop43 View Post
Would it be a violation of T&C to book the segments separately as one-way's? I realize that carries a risk of not being protected in IRROPS. But it seems fundamentally different than the hidden city trick, where you're lying about where you're actually traveling.
No issues doing so - of course , should any changes be needed , there would be 2 change fees to pay
Also, should a schedule change affect 1 sector, coul;d end up with an unusable sector and need to pay change fees / fare difference to get the other sector fixed ; also should a disruption impact flight 1 and might be able to go back based on trip in vain, this would also not apply since passenger is at destination not a transit point

As long as these considerations do not outweigh the saving in dollars, then go for it

Also, of course, if taking checked baggage, will need to collect and check in again
Dave Noble is offline  
Old Dec 9, 19, 6:40 pm
  #12  
 
Join Date: Dec 2014
Location: New York City
Programs: American Airlines Executive Platinum, Marriott Rewards Platinum Premier Elite
Posts: 1,562
Originally Posted by Dave Noble View Post
No issues doing so - of course , should any changes be needed , there would be 2 change fees to pay
Also, should a schedule change affect 1 sector, coul;d end up with an unusable sector and need to pay change fees / fare difference to get the other sector fixed ; also should a disruption impact flight 1 and might be able to go back based on trip in vain, this would also not apply since passenger is at destination not a transit point

As long as these considerations do not outweigh the saving in dollars, then go for it

Also, of course, if taking checked baggage, will need to collect and check in again
What if the original poster used to travel agency or possibly even web support or regular reservations to issue two tickets into one PNR. Would that alleviate all of the concerns that you described? Serious question because I think the answer is yes but Iím not sure.
donotblink is offline  
Old Dec 9, 19, 6:50 pm
  #13  
A FlyerTalk Posting Legend
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Posts: 41,184
Originally Posted by donotblink View Post
What if the original poster used to travel agency or possibly even web support or regular reservations to issue two tickets into one PNR. Would that alleviate all of the concerns that you described? Serious question because I think the answer is yes but I’m not sure.
I am pretty sure that if having in a single booking, it will have to be a through fare

Even if it could be put into 1 booking , the only thing that might be alleviated is the baggage check through
Dave Noble is offline  
Old Dec 9, 19, 6:54 pm
  #14  
 
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: USA
Programs: AA Plat, DL WFBF, National Emerald Club, Global Entry, CSR, IHG Gold
Posts: 1,458
Originally Posted by redtop43 View Post
Would it be a violation of T&C to book the segments separately as one-way's? I realize that carries a risk of not being protected in IRROPS. But it seems fundamentally different than the hidden city trick, where you're lying about where you're actually traveling.

I had posted in another thread that I was flying A-B on Monday, but needed to be in C on Sunday and booked an A-C-A round trip, with the return arriving in A on Monday a couple hours before the departure to B. (As it happened, when I did a separate search just from curiosity, it showed that A-C-B with the flights I was actually on was a valid routing.) Replies to my post about that trip said that I would be protected on the A-B flight if my C-A flight was delayed. Would this routing be any different, if the OP's SAN-LAX flight was delayed? Of course it would knock him off his desired LAX-PHL hop on the 789, but at least he'd get there.
If both tickets are AA, I don't see any reason why the traveler wouldn't be protected in IRROPS. Sure, they won't through-check bags, but if the first flight segment is delayed, causing the traveler to miss the second (separately ticketed) flight, they should rebook to the final.
wetrat0 is offline  
Old Dec 9, 19, 7:22 pm
  #15  
A FlyerTalk Posting Legend
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Posts: 41,184
Originally Posted by wetrat0 View Post
If both tickets are AA, I don't see any reason why the traveler wouldn't be protected in IRROPS. Sure, they won't through-check bags, but if the first flight segment is delayed, causing the traveler to miss the second (separately ticketed) flight, they should rebook to the final.
There are 2 separate journeys involved. If A-B is impacted, then airline only responsible to rebook to B
Dave Noble is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Search Engine: