it's a long way to tipperary
April 17, 2006 9:57 AM   Subscribe

I'd like all the info anyone has on flying as a courier to save money on air fare.

My girlfriend and I are planning on going to Spain this summer. We'd like to save money on air fare, and are looking into every available option. Flying as a courier seems to be the ultimate 'legendary' option: it's often recommended, and everybody seems to know somebody who knows somebody who did it, but I've been having a hard time tracking down legitimate information and/or contacts for this kind of thing, aside from mildly sketchy-looking websites and incredibly vague askme references. Has anyone actually done this? Or have you really, truly heard a complete and first-hand account of how it's done, preferably with names of companies or contacts used? Thanks.
posted by koeselitz to Travel & Transportation (11 answers total)
 
If you are talking about Diplomatic Couriers, that's not really a one time deal where you get to choose where you are going and can just vacation where you are sent.
posted by Pollomacho at 10:03 AM on April 17, 2006


pollo - i think he's talking about this sorta thing.

that said, i've never done it myself, or known firsthand anyone who has. it always struck me as one of those "i know a guy who knows a guy who.." kind of things too.
posted by sergeant sandwich at 10:22 AM on April 17, 2006


Google finds lots of websites but I'm sure you've tried them. I would ask at Flyertalk or Airliners.net or look if they have some ready answers.
posted by keijo at 10:30 AM on April 17, 2006


Thanks, sorry, I'd never heard of such a thing other than the diplomatic type!
posted by Pollomacho at 10:32 AM on April 17, 2006


There are a lot of threads about this on FlyerTalk. Use the advanced search and search for courier in the thread title only.
posted by grouse at 10:36 AM on April 17, 2006


By the way, are there any good ticket bidding sites?
posted by koeselitz at 11:39 AM on April 17, 2006


Bidding for Travel
posted by grouse at 11:55 AM on April 17, 2006


A previous post I made about subscribing to an air courier service

in sum: I think the air courier thing is bunk, and isn't going to save you a lot of money, if any. you'll just lose the $30 subscription fee.

there are a lot of threads on getting the cheapest price on airline tickets on metafilter -- you should flip through those.
posted by fishfucker at 1:21 PM on April 17, 2006


etn.nl was recommended to me. This is like "lending tree for airline tickets." Your requests go to travel agents and then they email you quotes. I got some pretty cheap stuff, but know that the prices are without taxes, so add $250ish per ticket. That brings them up to the YOWCH level.

Another tip for getting to europe. Getting to Europe is expensive, but once there you can use RyanAir or other cheap airlines to get to your final destination. So flying from US - > LON (or Manchester, or Birmingham, or some such) and the taking a £50 flight (RT) between there and Barcelona is another option to try.
posted by zpousman at 1:22 PM on April 17, 2006


oops, the comment i made about subscribing to an air courier service is further down that thread I linked. Unfortunately, mefi seems to be doing something wacky that is killing copy/paste in firefox, so instead of linking it, i'll just say "scroll down".
posted by fishfucker at 1:24 PM on April 17, 2006


If cheap is more important than a specific schedule, look into something like airhitch. never done it myself but my roommate swears by it for international travel. In a nutshell, you give them a flexible time when you can leave/return and they schedule you on a flight that's not full. you get one or two days notification as to when you leave. and the flights are in the range of $200-250 each way.
posted by skatz at 2:08 PM on April 17, 2006


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