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Booking a flight to ski country -- Question?

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 
I'm looking at going with a friend to Vail in late January, and I had a question regarding booking the flight.

The flight would be from Buffalo, NY with one stop enroute to Vail/Eagle County airport. Anyhow, my question is: Would it be cheaper to wait and book a week or two before, or would it be better to book now and avoid a potential hassle?

Even though the price is quite reasonable now ($328.00), I think I remember hearing that they sell seats on these flights rather cheap if they're not fully booked prior to departure. Is this true? :
post #2 of 11
Personally, I think 328 directly into Vail is a great price. I would jump on it just to know you have the seat.
post #3 of 11
I agree with DaMtnRider. That is a really good price especially considering you're flying from and to non-major market or non-hub airports. Flying into Vail/Eagle is so much more convenient and easier than Denver. You should buy those tickets now before the fare disappears.
post #4 of 11
I heard this morning on the radio that United has flights to Colorado on sale:

Ski town specials
Purchase these round-trip deals through Dec. 16:
• $252 Steamboat Springs-Hayden
• $256 Vail-Eagle
• $261 Durango
• $277 Grand Junction
• $289 Gunnison or Montrose
• $291 Aspen
Travel Mon.-Fri. each way or add $30 per direction. A 7-day advance purchase required. Stay any three to 30 days. Complete travel by Feb. 8. Blackout dates: Dec. 20, 21, 27, 28; Jan. 3, 4. Each participating airlines may not serve each destination.
Codes: United, SOE73NR; American, LO7E3QN; Continental, QR73XSNN; Delta, U7M3ON56; Northwest, TX7SKN; USAirways, VXE73MSN

Departure city for these rates -- Atlanta
post #5 of 11
Believe me when I say I've booked many flights to Colorado and that is usually what one would spend on a flight to Denver let alone Vail. So, ya book it before they sell out on the day you want to fly.

I fly out of Buffalo most of the time so I know. I did see that United was offering some Vail specials including ski packages. I usually fly into Denver and rent a SUV, drive up to Ski Country cause I like to ski some other places also.

We're going out on the 8th of january on free tickets but I booked our February trip with a flight into DIA for $198 round trip. I haven't booked my april trip yet cause I'm still trying to get a reasonable flight into Steamboat where my Son goes to College. I have seen some flights into Denver so far for as little as $225 round trip. I'll probably book it before the weekend is over.

My advice, if you're going to ski Vail/Bever Cree exclusively, then don't hesitate to book at that price. If you fly to Denver you must add the price of a rental car, or SUV which isn't cheap.
post #6 of 11
It might be worth your while to book your tickets on United even if it's a little more expensive. With United, they have a promotion that gets you a free lift ticket or ski lesson just for signing up for their promotion on their website and showing your boarding pass and ID at the ticket window.

Also, if you're going to rent a car, we found the rates at Denver to be significantly lower than Vail and we could fly there directly, so we chose to fly into Denver even though the fares were about the same. Factoring in connection times, we'll still get to the hill at the same time.

If you haven't booked your lodging yet, you should look into the Buy One Get One Free special at either Vail or Beaver Creek. I couldn't find a better deal elsewhere.
post #7 of 11
Roger, One thing about renting a vehical in Denver, by the time you take the car back to the terminal, the cost is usually about twice the weekly quote, due to all kinds of hidden costs. i've got a car reserver for $495 for the week and I can guarantee a charge on my credit card for at least $800. So, the cost in Vail will probably be less. By the way, you don't need to rent a car in Vail anyhow. You can get a shuttle from Eagle and once in Vail you can either walk anywhere you want to go or take the bus for nothing.

Just my 2 cents
post #8 of 11
I'm with Lars on this as well. Add the car on top of the long drive and I'll take the shuttles and buses around Vail anytime.
post #9 of 11
My reservation was for a midsize car for nine days including a ski rack through Alamo. The total with taxes and fees came to $228. I agree that if you're going to just stick around Vail, it makes sense to fly into Eagle and takes shuttles. However, we wanted to drive up to Steamboat for a day and also check out Rocky Mountain National Park on an off day. Also, those shuttles aren't cheap. It looked like around $70 R/T was about the going rate for a shuttle from EGE to Vail. For an extra $90, I'll take the convenience of a rental car. At the end of the day, it's all just personal preference.
post #10 of 11
post #11 of 11
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the tips guys, I locked in at the low price yesterday. [img]smile.gif[/img]

Now I just have to find a cheap airport shuttle and some discount lift tickets and i'll be good to go! The $73.00/day that Vail wants to charge is a little outrageous IMHO.
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