I’m usually awesome at bargain travel. I mean, I managed to travel to Hawaii for less than $2,000 with only 3 months notice.
I feel I was not so successful this past weekend when I travelled to Las Vegas for a bachelorette party.
The worst part of the weekend’s costs was my flight. It was also the most frustrating to even just book.
Now, I’m usually in a fortunate position because since I live in the NY/NJ area, I have three major airports to select from to get the best deal.
My initial search was promising. I found flights (at some pretty terrible hours of the day) that came in just over $200 from LaGuardia to Las Vegas on Spirit airlines.
Each flight had 3 connections. That sucked.
What was absolutely insane was after I booked the flight, I found the baggage fees for anything more than a purse or laptop bag, were nuts. Even a carry on has a fee. So as someone who planned to pack a backpack and a check a small bag, I would’ve been paying $71.
PER FLIGHT. So with 3 connections, an additional $213 each way.
This switched Spirit from the least expensive to the most expensive. Who the heck even does that and makes you pay per connection??
Also, Spirit is the worst and is barely worth the hassle even when it is the lowest price.
So nope. Big nope. I cancelled the flight and started again.
This time I managed to find a deal over at Delta for just under $300. I was able to sweeten the deal by applying for the Gold Delta Sky Miles reward during checkout, which waived my bag fee. I just have to remember to cancel it within the next year before the fee kicks in.
I’m also a little spoiled by parents who usually pick me up and drop me off at the airport, but since I just moved back into New York City, I was on my own to foot that cost too.
Getting there wasn’t so bad. It cost me $7.75 on the subway to go from Washington Heights down to JFK, but when I landed in the early morning hours of Tuesday, the same day I was starting a new job in the afternoon, there was no way I was taking the hour and a half journey home on the subway, especially since the trains run even less frequently in the middle of the night.
So $71 dollars later, I was safely back home.
And, to be honest, when budgeting for this vacation, I totally forgot about (and usually do) how much I was likely to spend in the airport. I should’ve remembered to budget even extra because I knew checkout of the hotel was early (10 AM) and my flight wasn’t until 4:30 PM. I went to the airport early to have a last brunch with the girls before everyone went their separate ways and picked up dinner there for the plane, so it was possibly my most expensive day of the trip.
I also easily spent about $20 on just water bottles during that time since I picked up a pretty nasty cold over the weekend too.
I’m really looking forward to teleportation being perfected – though I’m sure that’ll be expensive too. At least then we won’t be paying so much for airport and plane food anymore. Or middle of the night taxis.
Now it’s time to try to avoid the post vacation Danger Zone and settle back into regular life.
So mostly this was a rant about how much Spirit sucks (in case you were unaware), and why buying tickets to Las Vegas during the Billboard Music Awards means you’re probably not going to find the best deal there.