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Using Hipmunk for booking on Delta.comI'm planning a trip to China with a few co-workers. We are going to visit some new suppliers, check up on our existing ones and look for new products that are a good fit for our product line. Naturally I have been using Delta.com. I have to admit the website has come a long way (just a few years ago I could never find flights on partner airlines and would have to call in and speak to a rep).
Delta.com sucks with complicated itineraries (i.e., multi-city)
My problem is that despite a recent overhaul of their user interface their website is still very slow and basically sucks. I have figured out a lot of tips and tricks for using Delta.com over the years, but you really shouldn't have to "figure out" how to use a tool that ultimately leads you to spend thousands of dollars.
If I complicate my search by adding another city sometimes Delta just shows me a list of flights and makes me choose all of the flights in my itinerary (a total of 3) before showing me the price. I am not exaggerating when I say I have spent days of my life over the past few years trying to find and book flights on Delta.
Hipmunk is great with complicated itineraries
When I first saw Hipmunk I thought it was a novelty site that I would probably use a couple of times to try to find ridiculously cheap fares when I am willing to cheat on Delta for a really good fare on a competing airline. I immediately fell in love with the interface (the default view takes into account the price of the fare as well as the "agony," which accounts for the number of layovers, how long the layovers are, total travel time, etc.).
Hipmunk would be useful enough just for figuring out an ideal route, but I've noticed recently that Hipmunk has been able to put together multi-city routes with cheaper fares on Delta.com than Delta is able to generate for me. I went through everything and verified that I could pay and get exactly what I wanted and sure enough it worked. So not only did Hipmunk save me hours of time but several hundred dollars as well.
If you fly a lot you should definitely use Hipmunk (even if you have a preferred airline). You will save time, money and will not end up with a 13-hour layover in Seoul.
What Delta should do
Delta should just license Hipmunk and use it for their booking engine. I know that if I could talk to somebody in their web division they would tell me that they are working on something that will be better and that they don't need Hipmunk, but I've been flying on Delta for 8 years (PM the last two) and I have not spent money because they make it easy; I've flown Delta in spite of the fact that finding ideal flight times and the right fares is very difficult.
While I'm complaining, why can I not book a flight through my Delta iPhone app? Seriously?
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