Snagged a Good United Fare to Chicago for the Chicago Seminars!

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Update: Sounds like there may be a Chicago “fare war” popping up today from various locations, so check and see if today is the day for you to book your flights to the Chicago Seminars!  Thanks to @foofiter  for Tweeing me about the good deal on flights he got from ATL for the seminars.  He says many airlines were participating in this “fare war”.  I love some friendly airline competition!


During the Southwest/AirTran fare sale last week, I put a couple of flights on hold for a week using United’s awesome FareLock feature.  (I was in Vegas and wasn’t ready to think hard enough to commit 100% to non-refundable flights).  FareLock isn’t free, but it is reasonably priced in my opinion.  I think I paid about $8 per flight to give myself a week to think.  United didn’t match all of the routes on the Southwest sale, but they did match a few, and I didn’t want to miss out due to my indecision.  One of the routes I put on hold was IAH – ORD for the Chicago Seminars that run from October 12th – October 14th.  I will be speaking about the US Airways Grand Slam (assuming it happens), and there are only 135 tickets left for the weekend, so don’t wait too long if you are interested in attending

My FareLock expires today, so I went to check the selling price of IAH-ORD that weekend to make sure my deal was still the best available.  I was shocked to see it $100 cheaper than it was last week!  This route between United hubs has been a bit pricey in recent weeks/months, so I was thrilled to see a good price on a Friday – Sunday schedule.

I happily paid $218 to fly on my airline of choice and on my days of choice.  If you live in the Houston area and want to attend the Chicago Seminars, I would strongly consider locking something in today.  I didn’t have a chance to see if any other United routes are on sale today, but if you find anything good feel free to share the good news!

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  1. No love out of SFO (or OAK, or SJC). $512 RT for both UA and AA, a far cry from the $219 I paid AA 9 times in January to become EXP.

  2. @Explore, that stinks. Sorry your cities weren’t part of this mini fare drop today! If it makes you feel any better, IAH has been hovering around the $400+ range as well until today, so maybe so competition will come back to the West Coast soon.
    @IPBrian, I would book Avios as well at $400. In fact, that is what I did for my husband a while back while prices were still high.

  3. Good for you!
    What’s your process for evaluating fares? I know predicting airfare drops/increases is a crapshoot, but it’s be interesting to know what others take into consideration.

    I buy revenue tickets for quick getaways that I plan most of my trips far in advance, so I usually track fares for a few months before buying. I use a combination of kayak fare alerts and ita matrix searches to get a sense of fares.

  4. Darn $180 out of ATL (direct, DL.) Seems high, but the best I’ve seen for a while. Oh well, at least I got my most desirable flights.

  5. Bought tickets last week for Chicago Seminars from MSP to Chicago for $97 each round trip!! We are flying Delta but many others were offering the same deal! That sure beat last years price of $260.

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