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Recently, I tried to use flightfox, as I have read that they are much cheaper than other websites. Before proceeding with my booking however, I was faced by the fact that I had to pay a $49 fee before even seeing any flight options.

Is there a guarantee that flighfox will be cheaper than other services, and that I will end up saving more than what I will pay as a fee for the service?

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flightfox refunded my money a year ago, when I found the cheapest flight myself –  greg121 May 24 '14 at 18:10
I would not trust them as they fired most experts, and refund rules are not clear. –  user4010 May 25 '14 at 23:04

3 Answers 3

up vote 15 down vote accepted

As a former Flightfox 'expert', this has changed over time. For a while, if you paid and ran a contest, and they couldn't beat your price, you could request a refund (if you proved you had a lower price), and you'd get your money back.

Then a few months back they changed their model and shut out most of the experts, changing the remainder to 'travel consultants'. The idea being instead of having a bunch of people throw prices at you, you'd get one of their best people working with you to find the lowest price.

Odds are, you're going to get amazing service. When I was competing as an expert on the site - and I consider myself reasonably good at finding flight specials, I was in awe at some of the prices some people were managing to find. I'd use the site to get other experts to beat my prices for my own travel as well. They're seriously good.

Now the terms specify:

On Flightfox, travel consultants (the "Experts") try to build you the best trip itinerary in exchange for a fee. You pay this fee for services rendered. If you are unhappy with the service, you may request a refund from your expert. Your expert holds full discretion to approve or decline refunds.

So there's no 'guarantee', and there's always a chance that you'll find the absolute cheapest fare. Nobody can promise to beat every single price. But if you're unhappy or they really can't beat you, it's in their interests to refund. In the past when I used it and they couldn't beat a YVR->SFO return flight of mine, they refunded it.

I'd probably still use them for a complex trip. They're amazing. However I now compete on darjeelin.com (see referral link in my profile if interested) as Flightfox has shut a lot of us out, which is disappointing. I've met the founders and like them and really support the site - as an 'expert' I'll use darjeelin, but as a customer, I'd still use flightfox. It's a great solution.

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From their FAQ:

How much can I save?
Your expert will find you the lowest price available; that's our guarantee. Sometimes you will save $1,000s, but other times the best price will be an online published fare. In any event, you will be receiving the absolute lowest total cost for your described trip, travel advice, and peace of mind.

Are you as cheap as Kayak, Expedia, etc?
Yes, most often we're even cheaper. We can access all of their prices and in cases when they have the best price, we won't hesitate to point you there. Since we don't take any commissions, we can focus solely on building you the best trip at the lowest price.

So they pretend to find the lowest price, but they don't mention what happens if it's not the lowest one.

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Yeah, it's unclear in what sense this is a "guarantee". –  Nate Eldredge May 24 '14 at 18:04

I've gotten tickets thru them 2 out of 4 tries in the last 3 years. They found deals I had no idea were out there. Saved me 50% of the price and a better route as well. The other 2 times they didn't find anything better than I did so they assured me that they would refund the finder's fee without any hassles. They did this and told me it was standard policy to refund if they couldn't beat my price minus the finder's fee. So I didn't end up paying anything those times but was assuredly still on a good flight I found myself.

There still a small enough company that their service is quick and responsive. Go with them!

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