Airfare Watchdog

Airfare Watchdog widget means Fly Cheap to Siesta Key +

Posted by Paul Parr on April 15th, 2009

Airfare Watchdog
Airfare Watchdog

What took so long? Why did we not know about this earlier? This is really great stuff. Here we are in the middle of air travel mumbo jumbo and up pops an incredible source of flying information that is so, so good. I need to go back to the genesis of this information. Jan, long time Ford Motor “go to office person” and high school friend of my wife Nann, sends an email with some tips on purchasing airline flights and a casual reference to a website called Airfare Watchdog. Oh My God!!! This is not just a site, it is a life line to all of us who fly anywhere. The more you read on their site the smarter you get, the more money you save on travel and the more you travel. Talk about win, win, it does not get better than this. (Hey Ford Motor, how are you going to survive? Jan retired.)

After using Airfare Watchdog personally for some flights Nann and I needed to make, I started to think about writing a page on our blog to inform more of our Siesta Key beachfront vacation rental visitors of this great flight site. I realized that by conveying to our rental guests an easier way to find flights to Siesta Key would convert to more rentals and less need to advertise our beachfront Siesta Key penthouse condo. While in the thought process on how to write this blog today I received an update on pending flights, which I have already booked because of Airfare Watchdog, but chose not to cancel their updates to see how much more I could have saved if I had chosen to wait longer before purchasing. This is very similar to playing the stock market. The stock premise is very simple buy at the low and sell at the high. The question is always, “How do you know?” Purchasing your airline tickets is pretty much the same. You know when you want to travel in most cases and where you want to go. Now it is us to you to purchase your tickets at the best time to receive the lowest price and best value. Sounds simple, but in reality it comes back to the same damn question, “How do you know?”

Today I was intent on trying to publish something to all of you on Airfare Watchdog when I received another update email from Airfare Watchdog, which I took a moment to review. The email mentioned the Airfare Watchdog “widget”. I read further and was in disbelief on what I read. It said I could custom build the widget and put it on my website. Once I did this it would constantly update all of my visitors on what cheap airfares were available to fly to Florida on the airports I chose. I can do a lot of things on the website because of how our Ohio web design firm built and delivered the website to me, but I don’t know code. I mean I am not a programmer and using Java Scrip to add to my HTML website is like speaking a foreign language, but I continued to read because the article used a very sophisticated software terminology called “copy and paste”, which I have become fairly proficient at implementing. I’m not ready to go out and get a job as a computer programmer or software wizard, but this I can handle. I finished the widget paragraph, did what they said then copy and pasted the results to the www.sunsetroyale website. Now on our Penthouse at Sunset Royale home page we have a constantly updating display of the best fares from many cities to Sarasota/Bradenton Airport and on our Sunset Royale transportation page we have a second Airfare Watchdog widget, which give a constant update on the five closest airports to Siesta Key for the cheapest airfares. In minutes I was able to add one of the greatest, neatest tools to our website to help all of you find the cheapest airfares to Siesta Key. While looking at the five airport summary, across the screen came a $21 round trip airfare from a Detroit to Tampa, which I was going to book just to say I did it!

Airfare Watchdog takes tracking airlines flight fares to an art form. They tell you what days are best to fly and how to increase your odds at getting the lowest fare available. They send you to the airline, aggregator travel sites or wherever you have to go to obtain the fare that is being offered and telling you about any strings attached upfront and before going any further. A recent Airfare Watchdog blog article mentioned the higher cost of flying on a Friday or a Sunday, the importance of being flexible, if possible, on your arrival and departure dates along with many other words of wisdom. Many of us have found ourselves in the situation of having to fly unexpectedly at very short notice to a specific city. We always knew we were gong to pay dearly for this flight. Airfare Watchdog had this informative tip, “5. Use Priceline, especially if you don’t have a sufficient advance purchase window. The cheapest fares often require a 7, 14, 21, or even a 28-day advance purchase. What if you need to leave tomorrow or on short notice? That’s where Priceline’s “Name your own price” bidding process can help. Typically, savings reach 40-60%, sometimes more. The site has added a page showing a daily list of discounts on the top 50 routes, revealing how much other users have saved by bidding on fares. Click on the route and you’ll see actual bids vs. the lowest retail price.” What is so interesting is that Airfare Watchdog will not book any of your flights, but rather just tell you where to go to book them yourself. Even more amazing was the reality that I was able that I was able to accomplish this without contacting our Ohio web design firm to help install the widget.

Check this out.