If I find a cheap flight on a site that doesn't sell tickets, can I buy them online somewhere?

8/25/2012 4:24:21 PM

ITA’s site allows you to search “published” airfares. These are airfares that are available to all travel agencies, including all websites – so in theory you should be able to book them on any on-line travel booking website, including the airlines website if your flights only cover a single airline.

However there’s two things that can cause issues.

  • Many airfares are restricted for sale in a particular “market” (aka country). When using ITA Matrix, it will by default use the country you are departing from as the market, although you can change that by setting the “sales city” option at the bottom. If your flights are departing from country X, and you try and book them on a website operating in country Y then you may not be able to get the same price – so look for a website in the country you’re departing from.

  • Different flight search engines will pair up flights in different ways, so it you simply enter the start/end airports into (say) Expedia it may not give you the same route options as Matrix does. The best way around this is to enter the details as a “multi-city” trip on the booking website, and enter some/all of the intermediate points that Matrix found for you. On occasional you’ll still end up with a situation where you can’t get the website to “price” the flights correctly for you – but normally it’ll work.


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Hello,My name is Aparna Patel,I’m a Travel Blogger and Photographer who travel the world full-time with my hubby.I like to share my travel experience.

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