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When and Where to Buy Airline Seats on Third-Party Websites

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This is a 3-month time series study of airlines fares on three third-party websites (Expedia, Orbitz, and Travelocity), showing the level and changes of fares and their implications for traveler decisions as to when and where to buy airline seats. We discovered that it is best for travelers seeking the lowest fares to purchase tickets early, because fares tend to be volatile on the upside over time, culminating in the highest fares on the days of departure, and to fly on weekends. It is also best to check fares on as many websites as possible to get the lowest fare, because the evidence seems to suggest that fare parity does not exist, and not all airlines are represented on all third-party websites.
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Keywords: AIRLINE FARES; DECISION TO PURCHASE; THIRD-PARTY WEBSITES

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2011-10-01

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