Because Delta doesn’t open up flights for bookings until 10 months before departure, I had a few months in which to stalk airline prices. On a few occasions, I ran the cost of flying from Detroit to Johannesburg June 15-28, 2009: the same dates, only a year earlier.
The prices did not impress.
We braced for the worst.
It isn’t like there is a whole lot you can do to negotiate a cheaper airline tickets. You’re at the mercy of the airlines. We don’t have the time or the patience to fly from Detroit to New York to Amsterdam to Paris to Nairobi to Sydney to Johannesburg in the name of saving $250. I’m not sure a booking agent would bend to a bit of good-natured haggling. (…which I would totally suck at, anyway.)
Fast forward to August. Reservations finally opened and our flights came up $1,500 cheaper than the 2009 prices. Score.
I was able to choose our seats during the reservation process. And, because I am so smart, I navigated my web browser over to Seat Guru.
Unfamiliar with Seat Guru? Get familiar with it. Seat Guru is a website that provides you with seating maps for all different models of airplanes. You can read reviews about the available seats – which have limited recline, reduced legroom, are too close to the bathrooms, etc. – and pick the least brutal of what is available. (Let’s be honest here: any seat that you’re restricted to for 19 ½ hours is brutal.)
After punching in our plane’s information, I realize only the first 10 rows of coach have power ports.
My laptop does not have a 19 ½ hour battery life.
EASY DECISION. Two fully-reclining, power-ported, not-too-close-to-the-bathroom seats in row six, thankyouverymuch!
That, friends, is the lesson of the day: use Seat Guru. Plug in your laptop. Recline your seat. Be happy.