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Showing posts from 2014

COK to BLR back on I5's all new "RED"

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After confirming my ticket for the onward journey, it was time to hunt for return tickets. I travelling just before Christmas, and hence fares were rising quite fast. I opted for a Sunday night flight from Kochi - and my options were Jet Airways, Indigo and Air Asia - and Air Asia was the cheapest among the lot. This particular flight sells quite slow - probably because of its unearthly arrival time at Bengaluru. Without thinking further, I booked my seat on this flight and chose a window seat (as usual) on the port side. With the SpiceJet turmoil leaving me confused, I quickly checked the refund policy of the Air Asia ticket I held. Thankfully, the ticket was not promotional and was refundable, although I'd get very little after the deductions.  But then, SpiceJet came out of their mess partially and gave me the confidence that my trip was on. Once it was confirmed that the trip was on, I added a meal to my ticket - I was sure I'd be hungry on that flight.

December 21, 2014:

To Kochi - On SpiceJet, for the last time?

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Searching for air-fares has been a favorite pass-time for me since some time now. The third saturday of every month is a fixed holiday for me. I was expecting the dates for an examination that I had to appear, and was scheduled for December - I wanted to get a confirmation on those dates before I booked tickets for my monthly visit to my hometown. As soon as the confirmation dropped in, I got on to hunt for tickets - that being a weekend before Christmas meant whichever mode I select, I had to book it well in advance. I searched for air fares on various travel websites, and also on airline websites. I found a cheap ticket on SpiceJet - finally booked a ticket after applying a coupon on a travel website.

As the journey came closer and closer, news about SpiceJet being in a financial mess surfaced giving me mini heart-attacks very often. Things seemed all okay as the flight I was booked on seemed flying regularly. This particular rotation wasn't cancelled or rescheduled as part of …

The Maharaja A319, Pune to Bangalore via Hyderabad

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It was an interesting experience searching for tickets for my return journey from Pune. The conference I was attending was getting over on Sunday in the afternoon, and my presentation was scheduled for Sunday morning. Since I decided to go for the conference quite late, my options were quite limited. While browsing on different ticketing websites, I came across a low fare ticket on Air India - the good ol' Maharaja of Indian skies. I quickly cross checked the rates on the Air India website, and confirmed the rates did exist. I hadn't flown on Air India for quite some time, and I haven't flown an Airbus A319 as well. Booking on this flight was a no-brainer decision. The departure time from Pune (1535hrs) was a bit of worry though - the program ends only at 1330hrs. I decided to book the ticket after I checked the distance between the conference venue and the airport.

November 30, 2014:
While at the conference venue, I booked for a cab pick-up at 1300hrs. With the airport ju…

GO to Pune!

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A conference in Pune. Attending conferences and making paper presentations are often a part of my profession. I sent in an entry for the paper presentation and it got approved. I was undecided whether to go or not until a few days before the conference when a senior person in my department encouraged me to attend the program. After confirming my registrations, it was time to hunt for tickets and accommodation. I booked a room using a famous travel portal (which I later cancelled and rebooked in a different hotel) and then began the hunt for the travel tickets. I hadn't still decided whether to attend the entire conference or only the main part of it - and hence I first booked my return ticket. Then the search for the outward ticket started - I had two options - Indigo and Go. Since I had never been on Go, I selected a Go Air Flight to Pune, departing at 0545hrs on November 29, 2014.

The day prior to my journey was quite busy, and I reached home quite late. Some guests at home mea…

Kochi to BLR on AirAsia.. again!

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The hunt for weekend tickets was running hot on my laptop. Almost all the flights for the date I wanted were selling at fairly high prices - but there were sufficient low cost tickets for the next day (i.e., Monday). It was then that an idea flashed - I had enough leaves left, and I could afford to take half-a-day off, fly a morning flight to Bangalore and head straight to office from the airport. I decided to do that - and started looking at the morning options. There were four flights - one each by Jet Airways, Indigo, Air Asia and SpiceJet (in the order of departure). I decided to pick the cheapest - and Air Asia it was! Things went normally after the booking, till my Sis-in-law booked on the same flight (for a different date) - she got a message saying her flight was rescheduled and would leave only an hour later - later, the flight got cancelled as well. The punctuality of this particular flight wasn't looking great whenever I checked its stats.

A couple of days before my jo…

BLR to COK by 9W ATR once more....

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Sometime towards the end of October. I was busy browsing travel websites in the hunt for air-tickets - Flying to Kochi from Bangalore meant a lot of time savings for me, and this was getting on me. Tickets for a Friday flight in November showed up for somewhere around 2.4K on a ticketing portal - and the portal was offering a cashback coupon for bookings using credit cards issued by an particular bank. I thought of checking out how much does the cashback work out to, and hit the book button - the website turned up the "Please wait while we reconfirm the fares and availability" message. The next page sprung up a surprise for me - the message there read, "The fare for your booking has been reduced". And, I got a ticket for Rs. 899!

Date of Journey: November 14, 2014
Flight No: 9W-2655 || Seat: 15A
Aircraft type: ATR 72-500 || Regn: VT-JCN
STD: 1710hrs, ATD: 1652hrs
STA: 1840hrs, ATA: 1811hrs

I left office a bit late - It was already 3pm by the time I reached out of offic…

COK to BLR: 9W ATR again!

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The price at which I got the round-trip ticket continued to be the talk of the town (pun intended) as I attended a marriage in Kerala. I was back home by afternoon. Irrespective of the number of days I spend at home, I invariable have a heavy heart when the time to return comes. This time, I wasn't keeping really well, and I wasn't even able to have good food.

Date of Journey: November 09, 2014
Flight No: 9W-2614 || Aircraft: VT-JCM || Seat: 15A
STD: 2225hrs, ATD: 2207hrs
STA: 2350hrs, ATA: 2328hrs

I had a very early dinner, and walked out of home in the midst of a power failure, at around 1915hrs - it was quite dark as I walked towards the bus stop. It dawned on me that it was a Sunday only after waiting at the bus stop for close to 15 minutes to get a bus to the nearest town. I got a bus by sheer chance of luck - all thanks to two bus crew who were standing there - the guy literally stood on the road as he waved at the bus driver to stop. I reached Kodungallur sometime around 1…

On the 9W ATR: BLR to COK

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At the height of the Diwali air war - almost every airline had dropped one way fares to a light Rs. 899. One airlines' site crashed minutes after the offer went live, and when it came back, seats were gone! I did most of my searching on a third-party ticketing website, and won a one way ticket for Rs. 899 (turned to over a thousand adding the website's processing fee as well). One website had an interesting offer for round-trip bookings using their app. I decided to play around with the app a bit, and search tickets for a trip that I was just contemplating. The app threw me a round trip ticket for Rs. 1798 - I played around a bit more, added a coupon code and the final fare (for the round trip) dropped to a jawdropping Rs. 1332! It took me some time to understand that I wasn't dreaming - in a couple of minutes I had a round-trip PNR generated on Jet Airways, for a service operated by Jet Konnect at a fare I've only heard in the Air Deccan days!

As the day of my journe…