Last night, I attempted to book flights for a trip to Seattle in December. I had looked at tickets during the day, pleased to see round trip airfare was around $250 per person–in my experience, anything under $300 for a direct flight from MSP is a pretty good deal. I called Scott at work, and he agreed we would finalize our itinerary once he was home for the evening.
Because the airline gods hate us, by the time Scott made it home ticket prices had increased by over $100 per person. Naturally, this meant I started swearing and throwing things while Scott attempted to talk me down. The conversation went something like this.
ME: Okay…I think we’re just gonna have to bite the bullet and pay a little bit more. According to Bing, there’s an 80 percent chance prices will go up even more if we wait.
SCOTT: How much more will they go up?
ME: I don’t know, Scott. There’s no way to tell exactly.
SCOTT: Well, can’t Travelocity tell you?
ME: No, Travelocity can not tell me how much the price will increase.
SCOTT: Oh, okay…well see if it would be any cheaper to fly in on Wednesday instead of Thursday.
I do as he asks.
SCOTT: There! Look! They still have the flight you wanted. See? It’s right there!
KATRINA: Do you see that number next to it? That’s the price. It’s $127 more than it was a few hours ago.
SCOTT: Oh, okay. Well, if we fly home to Minnesota on a different day, will that make the price for the day we fly to Seattle go down?
ME: No. It doesn’t work that way.
SCOTT: Hmm. Well, why don’t you see if we pick that flight what return flight goes with it.
ME: It doesn’t work that way either. The departing and returning flights aren’t paired with each other. You can pick which ones you want out of all that are available.
SCOTT: Well, if we booked the late night one on Monday, would that open up new flights that are available for us to fly home on Sunday?
ME: NOOOOOO. The options are always the same.
SCOTT: Can we use frequent flier miles?
ME: I looked into that…I have enough, but you don’t.
SCOTT: Can’t we just combine miles from all our different airline accounts into one big account?
SCOTT: Well how many miles do we have?
ME: You only have 18,000. I have 36,000. It costs 25,000 to fly to Seattle.
SCOTT: What?! Seattle isn’t 25,000 miles away!
ME: No…that’s how many miles it costs to get a free ticket from Minnesota to Seattle.
SCOTT: Oh…I thought they just charged you the distance of miles it was to the location you wanted to travel to.
ME: I’m gonna check prices on Southwest.
I open up the Southwest website and enter our travel dates and locations.
SCOTT: Hey, that’s a great price! Only 185 bucks…let’s book!
ME: Scott…that’s the price for a one way ticket.
SCOTT: Oh. Can’t you just buy two one way tickets?
ME: Yes, but 185 plus 185 = 370 for round trip. $370 is not a good price. .
SCOTT: Oh. Right. Um…do you want to just drive to Seattle?
ME: No. I do not want to drive from Minnesota to Seattle and back in the middle of winter.
SCOTT: Yeah…good point. Do you think we could find like, a coupon code somewhere? For the plane tickets?
ME: Scott…have you ever booked a flight before?
SCOTT: Umm…no. No I have not.
Scott ended up leaving the room while I booked the tickets myself. I started to grow concerned that I had married someone who doesn’t know how to arrange travel. Then I remembered that up until six months ago, I had no idea how to set the metal tab on the gas pump to fill the tank automatically until Scott demonstrated it step by step. To this day I’ve never mowed a lawn. I’ve only learned how to properly fold clothes and use our remote control because Scott has had the patience to sit me down and show me. As much as it pains me to admit this humiliating fact…I don’t think I even clipped my own fingernails until I was at least 13. Booking airfare is one of my few marketable skills.
So, while we’re each incompetent in our own ways, together we somehow manage to cover all the bases.
Still, I think it’s going to be a long time before I relinquish the reigns of control and let Scott run loose on Travelocity. Much like how he still won’t let me cut my own fingernails.
Main photo by epSos.de