When we started Mighty Travels a few years ago I kept wondering (among other things) why it is so tricky to find airfare deals and why there is no 365 day flight search.
A few years later things have evolved quickly and there is a lot more technology that deals with the ‘big data’ problem of finding airfares. Most GDS systems (the reservation systems used by legacy airlines and some of the newer airlines) allow just a small amount of fare searches. They require a certain ‘look-to-book’ ratio and restrict searches to a date and airport combination.
There are more than 2,000 airports with commercial flights in this world and an equal amount of airlines. That is 4 million airport pairs and 365×365 date combinations – about 1.5 billion searches you would have to make. Airfares change at any minute so even if you search once a day (which isn’t something you can do in the first place) you would have just have about 0.5 milliseconds to complete a search. The speed of light takes longer even when you are in the same city as the computer you are querying!
With Mighty Travels Premium we are looking at about 5 million fares every day and extract just about 100,000 every day that are bookable and that we consider a deal (based on historic averages and based on Cents per Mile).
All those fares are loaded into the Mighty Travels Deals Dashboard every day – here are some fun things you can do with that data.
The Mighty Travels Deals Dashboard is included in a Premium Subscription. The subscription also gives you real-time deal alerts and hotel deals.
1) Deals to a certain airport
Suppose you live in Los Angeles (but are willing to fly from a different airport if the deal is good enough) and are looking to explore the ‘Baltics’ within the next 12 months. You are pretty flexible with dates.
It is pretty apparent that LAX and OAK and Norwegian seem to offer teh best deal (as of today) to any of the three airports in the Baltics.
2) Airfare deals to a specific region
Just like award zones we have grouped the world into 11 regions. Suppose you are flexible to fly from anywhere on the US West Coast to Australia, South-East Asia or Europe you could find the best deals here.
We also list the difference to the historic prices for this route.
Try the Dashboard now with a Mighty Travels Premium subscription.
3) Search your favorite airline only
Assume you want to get those remaining few miles i order to finish teh year with status. And you know that only a certain airline is giving you 100% mileage credit. Or maybe you simply like one airline much more than any other. This is how you can filter your search.
4) Find Business Class Deals only
Most Business Class deals are valid until ‘end of schedule’ with the exception of certain black out dates. We only list one date but you can search the best Business Class deals (with or without an airline filter as well).
5) Burn those VDB vouchers
Many of us get plenty of airline gift cards or VDB vouchers. Those need to be used on a specific airline (i.e. Delta). Just combine the airline filter with how much you would like to spend.
6) Travel – but don’t travel too far with the kids
I love traveling with my kids but flights over 5 hours can easily become a nightmare because of their sleep schedule. Apply the maximum miles filter and/or price in the search.
7) I have $500 and want to get away (i.e. at least 5,000 miles (Return) )
Where can $500 in airfare take you from Europe to anywhere in the world right now? Since airfares are so low in Europe right now you can easily fly 10-12 hours in any direction and still have money to spare.
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About the author: Torsten is a serial entrepreneur who started almost a dozen ventures on four continents. Torsten's love for travel has brought him to 130+ countries and travel with most of the world's airlines. You can reach Torsten at [email protected]
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