As of 9am ET, my Air France first class ticket is still intact. I’m not expecting it to stick, but even if it is cancelled I sure had fun booking it.
I had just awoken from eight hours of slumber and tried again to coax the onboard internet to do anything more than send text messages. One of the first things I do each morning is to check Boarding Area for any breaking news or deals. It took the page several minutes to load, but it finally did and there was nothing that jumped out at me.
I closed my computer and closed my eyes again, though breakfast started about 15 minutes later. After a nice breakfast, I brushed my teeth, changed out of my pajamas, and returned to my seat.
Once again, I attempted to get online, checking first my email and Award Expert, then navigating back to Boarding Area.
Suddenly my eyes lit up. The homepage was littered with Air France First Class posts. I immediately opened up another browser window to attempt to book something…anything.
Aggravatingly Slow Onboard Internet
But the internet was too slow. Google Flights would not load. Kayak would not load. Orbitz would not load. To complicate matters, we had begun our descent into Istanbul and FAs would soon ask passengers to put laptop computers away.
I reached out to Kyle (who you can read every Sunday on Live and Let’s Fly) who tried to book for me. The cheap prices still showed up on Google Flights, but would reprice when booking. He tried dozens of dates for the next several minutes to no avail. It seemed like I had missed out on this deal.
Suddenly, as the aircraft continued to drop, the internet sped up. I started looking myself. Running into the same issue on Google Flights, I switched to Kayak. Kayak showed that Travelocity was still offering the cheap rate. I chose an itinerary (a random date in autumn without much thought), hoping to book something quickly.
It errored out.
That’s it, I thought. FAs announced that we had begun final descent. Internet would cut out in just a moment.
But I tried one other date…AND IT WORKED!
I was able to go through the booking process, enter credit card details, and confirm the reservation. It ticketed moments later…I had squeezed one by long after most considered the deal dead.
Even if this ticket is cancelled, I sure had a lot of fun booking it. Some people get adrenaline rushes out of skydiving or racing…I get it from booking cheap airfare from high above the clouds.
And here’s the moral of the story: just because message boards and blog comments say a deal is dead, doesn’t mean it actually is. These sorts of fares often have a tendency to linger for an extra hour or so, though you never know which booking source to target. Just keep looking.
photo: Air France