Higher prices just before flight

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Old Jul 3, 18, 11:19 am
  #16  
 
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I've been keeping a close eye on availability on some leisure routes for the last few months, that have a J9 Y9 B9, rest 0 pattern. This lasts from about a month to a week before departure.

At first I thought BA was going a bit crazy - (near) full fare appears non-sellable on a leisure route, at least in the volume of seats. The amazing thing is that all of the flights went out completely full, with only a few individual empty seats.

It may be painful to OPs travel plans, but BA appear to be extremely good at knowing their market and how much they can milk it. I've grown fairly impressed with that pattern (though in line with the OP I'm not particularly liking it on a personal level...)
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Old Jul 3, 18, 11:21 am
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There's another side here. The dynamic pricing also means that there usually actually is a seat available if you really really need (and are prepared to pay for) it at very short notice. That wouldn't be much less the case at certain times on certain routes otherwise.
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Old Jul 3, 18, 11:21 am
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Originally Posted by gms View Post
Yes, you could. For €600!

Did you also check the pricing for Economy? If it is the BRU-LHR route you are looking for I can see some not too ridiculous prices in Economy. Still over €300 return, but that's what you expect if booking the day before.

I think everyone would love to get cheap deals the day before a flight, unfortunately, that doesn't seem such a good deal from the perspective of airline revenue management and profitability!
i usually do not book on such short term. Normally i have my schedule for 21 days in advance. I am looking at economy flights now as well as departing from dusseldorf as there are som nice tickets available.
and if it not works out? Well, i spend the night in my own bed and work from home..
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Old Jul 3, 18, 11:57 am
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While only one specific route, I have often got fares around £113 for LGW-GLA CE single the day before departure, whereas the LHR-GLA equivalent will be vastly more expensive.
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Old Jul 3, 18, 12:10 pm
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Originally Posted by Seraglio View Post
isnt there a way that in specific circumstances a short notice flight can be booked with somewhat normal prices?
By ‘specific circumstances’ do you mean wanting to go to a business meeting at short notice?

i.e. the least specific/exceptional/extenuating circumstances one could possibly imagine?
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Old Jul 3, 18, 7:11 pm
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Originally Posted by Seraglio View Post
If that flight leaves with an empty chair in club world, i could have been on it.
You keep making this point, but airlines don't really care. They have worked out that if they have ten seats free at 24 hours to go, they are better off pricing them exorbitantly knowing that three people have to pay to be in them, rather than pricing them cheap to fill all ten. From a micro perspective looking at one passenger it may not make sense, but airlines are trying to maximise their profit from the flight, not from individual passengers.
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Old Jul 3, 18, 8:58 pm
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They also don't want to train passengers to wait for the last minute to try to get a bargain. By giving the best prices 3-4 weeks out, they can get the flights filled and know that they will have enough passengers. Anyone who needs to fly at the last minute---much like anyone who pays for tickets 9-12 months out---will pay a premium.
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Old Jul 4, 18, 12:55 am
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Try booking as a BA holiday including a hotel or rental car. You can always 'forget' to pick up the rental car / fail to check in for the hotel. I often find they still have availability at short notice.
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Old Jul 4, 18, 1:05 am
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There are some business heavy routes that I have travelled on that can have stupidly high prices especially during the peak leisure period..

I think the most my company has paid to go to Gib booking on a Friday to go Monday was over £1000 in economy and this can be the norm as it is for next week in Economy is over £980 and climbing..

I would look at using a Corporate TA, as they have access to different fares, that arent published.
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Old Jul 4, 18, 1:56 am
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Originally Posted by Globaliser View Post
It's not that weird if you think of the fundamental principle behind it: the system operates to try to screw out of you every last penny that you're prepared to pay (which in some cases is substantially more than the amount that you'd like to pay).

If at short notice, the airline has 3 seats left, and it could sell them to each of three travellers for £100 each, but one of them is actually prepared to pay £500 because they really really need to get there (whereas the other two are on a budget and, like the OP, will pass on the trip), then the airline makes more money by taking £500 from one passenger and flying two empty seats.
... and the budget fliers flying on their own money will then use the RFS anyway, so the seats may not go empty!
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Old Jul 4, 18, 5:31 am
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My take: If the flight is too expensive there wasn't a point in going in the first place.
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Old Jul 4, 18, 5:37 am
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Originally Posted by mfkne View Post
My take: If the flight is too expensive there wasn't a point in going in the first place.
Interesting. So we should all book at any price, if the trip has a purpose. You don't work for BA do you?
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Old Jul 4, 18, 6:23 am
  #28  
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Originally Posted by Woodbinerich View Post
Interesting. So we should all book at any price, if the trip has a purpose. You don't work for BA do you?
You missed the point. There was no suggestion by mfkne that one ought to book at "any price." Rather, the question is whether one ought to book at the price quoted.

The ticket prices here were not raised. Rather the cheap discounted fares were sold, leaving RM/IM predicting that there are people out there who will pay a great deal of money to fly because they must fly. How much is dependent on the importance of the meeting in question.

Sometimes there are good deals to be had last minute. But, the preponderance of close-in bookings are in the higher fare buckets and the seats get filled or not. BA is not alone in this regard.

While BA will not enjoy OP's custom for this trip, on a macro basis, it believes that it will sell the deat at the higher price. Perhaps BA is wrong and OP wrong. But, BA has millions if not more data points and is more likely correct than OP who can only consider his own situation in this specific circumstance.
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Old Jul 4, 18, 8:58 am
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IAG just reported 87.1pc seat factor for BA last month so probably considers that Revenue Management is doing a good job. A few seats left on most flights for the "must travel, will pay" one in three passengers described earlier in the thread. I booked a couple of flights to Scandinavia recently for late firming meetings and the price was a tad eye watering compared to those we see on x.com or in the newspaper ads but at that short notice the airlines know that some will stump up.
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Old Jul 4, 18, 9:15 am
  #30  
 
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The other flip side to this is that demanding clients who want you to attend short notice meetings (that you don't really want to go to...) have to decide if they are really prepared to pay, or whether the meeting is actually not necessary.
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