Commuting to Harvard...

 
Old Apr 9, 05, 5:42 pm
  #1  
mid
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Commuting to Harvard...

HI all!

I'm going to be commuting to Harvard for a set of night classes starting in the Aug/Sep timeframe.

I've been looking over my options for getting up there. All in all, I will be making about 18 or so trips from the DC area. My closest airport is IAD.

I'm United Premier right now but I'm seriously thinking about using Indy Air for this little jaunt of mine. The thing is: the flights on United are about $90 more expensive than Indy right now and over a bunch of flights that can really add up.

The real thing I'm worried about is that I'll buy up a bunch of tickets and then be stuck if Indy has trouble.

Suggestions? I'm willing to sacrifice a little convenience for cost savings but I'm not willing to sacrifice too much.

Then again, I'm torn about sticking with United since they DO give out a lot of perks with the Red Carpet clubs and the Mileage Plus program.

Decisions, decisions....

I could use some honest guidance here.
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Old Apr 9, 05, 6:57 pm
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I've flown on Indy Air and they were a very nice airline. I would highly recommend them on the shorter routes that they fly. That not withstanding, you have a very valid concern about whether they'll even be around when you plan on traveling. They've survived this long, despite the rather critical forecasts. It's anybody's guess whether they'll be around by Aug/Sep or not. How much of a gamble are you willing to take with your money?
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Old Apr 9, 05, 8:08 pm
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I wouldn't book Aug/Sep tickets until June or so, just because there's rarely a reason to book prior to 60 days early. By then it will be very apparent how the airlines are doing over the summer (a key time for them to bring in some revenue) and how stable they'll be through the leaner fall months. I fully expect Independence to be running just fine come then -- the new west coast service and increased CLT service will probably have some good increases in systemwide traffic and hopefully revenue.
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Old Apr 9, 05, 8:19 pm
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The restructuring that Indy put in place last Feb / Mar has bought them time (probably about a year) for them to start making money... or else. Aug / Sept timeframe sounds safe to me, but if you have hesitations you can always wait until they release some of their quarterly info and you can see which way the trend is going... you have plenty of time to book.

Also, it ends on Aug 31 but you might consider the college student GLiDE promotion - http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/showthread.php?t=417087 ... if you are taking the majority of your flights in August it might be well worth it even for just one month... and you could squeeze in additional summer flying at no charge.
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Old Apr 9, 05, 9:08 pm
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I wouldn`t hesitate if the price is right book the tickets using your credit card. The card company will refund the money if FLYI are not around, they have to.

BBB
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Old Apr 10, 05, 12:33 am
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I would also not hestitate to FLYI. First of all, I think its very likely they'll be here at least this summer. Second, frankly, they do an excellent job, the people are very friendly, and nothing is a hassle. They deserve some business.
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Old Apr 10, 05, 9:49 pm
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Just to clear up my original post -- I wouldn't have any problem buying the tickets now if you want to go ahead and buy them. Personally, I don't buy tickets too far in advance so that I can watch the route and fares and try to get tickets when a good promotional sale comes up.
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Old Apr 11, 05, 8:54 am
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I hope that they extend this one.

Well this promotion expires before you start your classes, but if they do it again in the fall (which I really hope that they do!) it should help make the decision a bit easier.
(Can't belive that you have to decide between the service that you get on an Indy flight and on a UA flight; it's a no brainer that Indy service is better. IMHO)

http://www.flyi.com/specials/college/default.aspx

This promo has saved serveral of my friends lots of money and kept them flying Indy, and in some cases got their family flying Indy.
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Old Apr 11, 05, 9:09 am
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mid
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Originally Posted by DataBaseDude
Well this promotion expires before you start your classes, but if they do it again in the fall (which I really hope that they do!) it should help make the decision a bit easier.
(Can't belive that you have to decide between the service that you get on an Indy flight and on a UA flight; it's a no brainer that Indy service is better. IMHO)

http://www.flyi.com/specials/college/default.aspx

This promo has saved serveral of my friends lots of money and kept them flying Indy, and in some cases got their family flying Indy.
I used to fly Indy back when they were Atlantic Coast Airlines and were doing United Express flights. Let's just say that they didn't always inspire confidence back then.

Since they've changed names and started working for themselves, I'm willing to give them another shot based on all the good things I've been hearing. I've flown JetBlue and if the options and service are anything like that, I'll be ecstatic.

I looked at the $249/all you can fly promotion and it won't work for me since I have tight deadlines and can't wait for a space to become available on a flight. I have to do as much as possible to guarantee a seat on a specific flight since I can't really miss classes.
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Old Apr 11, 05, 9:21 am
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20% off for college students

Sorry if I posted the wrong link. I meant to post the link for 20% off for college students (it's pretty easy to find on their main site if you click on travel specials).

The other day I picked up one of my friends from the airport and she was once again raving about the service. It's definetly worth spending $50 or so for a flight so that you can see what everyone is talking about.
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Old Apr 12, 05, 7:26 am
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Well I'd definitely say try Independence Air, but the flight is so short that service isn't that big of a deal to be worried with. just choose on price, IMHO. Or, alternate for fun- United 737/757/A320 with Independence Air CRJs!
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Old Apr 13, 05, 1:50 pm
  #12  
mid
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United just lowered prices to match Indy...

Originally Posted by bursa
Well I'd definitely say try Independence Air, but the flight is so short that service isn't that big of a deal to be worried with. just choose on price, IMHO. Or, alternate for fun- United 737/757/A320 with Independence Air CRJs!
LIke I said, I'm premier on United. I just checked out to September and October and UA has introduced a $136 S fare that closely mirrors the total Indy Air rate.

While I know that Indy is looser with terms than United is regarding changes and cancellations, what is the real risk that Indy will fold and I'll be stuck with no transport (or expensive transport) to BOS?
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Old Apr 13, 05, 11:03 pm
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Originally Posted by mid
While I know that Indy is looser with terms than United is regarding changes and cancellations, what is the real risk that Indy will fold and I'll be stuck with no transport (or expensive transport) to BOS?
For your time period the chances of Indy being completely gone are very very small, and the chances of BOS service being cut back is also very small... In fact I've heard that this summer some flights will be upgraded to the A319 between IAD - BOS.
I know Indy has its share of problems, but to say that UAL is a more reliable option than Indy is a mistake IMHO. We are talking about an airline that has been bogged down in bankruptcy for years with no exit in site. (Of course I am biased so take that with a grain of salt).
In my opinion both UAL and FLYI will be around in your Aug - Oct timeframe, so if all variables are the same I would say go with the airline that is more convenient and that you enjoy flying more.
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Old Apr 29, 05, 1:37 pm
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what about the new GlIde pass program. Is it valid while you take class? Are you under 25? If so you can do many of your flights for ~250$ total + taxes and fees if you can travel on Tue, Wed, and Sat...
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Old Apr 29, 05, 2:02 pm
  #15  
mid
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Originally Posted by beofotch
what about the new GlIde pass program. Is it valid while you take class? Are you under 25? If so you can do many of your flights for ~250$ total + taxes and fees if you can travel on Tue, Wed, and Sat...
Glide is only for the summer and I'm over 25....

.....way over.
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