Making it real – Buying the one-way ticket
Mis à jour : 10 juin 2020
Recommended soundtrack for this post: One-way ticket, disco version from Eruption (1979).
Decision made, time to get real… It’s one thing to say “Ok I’m moving abroad next September” but it’s another deal to set up a date and actually purchase the thrilling one-way ticket…
For numerous reasons, I felt the need to have a date fixed early. First I needed a reverse-schedule to get started on the many issues that came up with the decision to move (moving my things to the other side of the world, requesting a visa, obtaining a passport for my child, starting to look at potential jobs, figure out medical insurance, driving license (going from the right side to the left side of the road)…
We started to look at tickets… and prices!!! One-way tickets are usually very expensive compared to return tickets. For example, my last return ticket for New Zealand cost me 800€, but the one-way deals I was looking at were at least 550€ each! The cheapest were including very long stopovers (up to 12 hours!) or very little check-in luggage and carry-on. We couldn’t see ourselves hanging in an airport for so long with a one-year old baby by then and we needed as much luggage allowance as possible in order to avoid a big shipment of our belongings through another transportation.
Also, I initially thought the ticket would be free for my baby. Actually, one of my friends flew to Canada and got a free ticket for her then-under two years old son. I quickly realised that very few airlines were offering the same deal. Most of them were just giving 10% off to go as far as New Zealand. We were ready to spend up to 1500€ for our tickets. It looked like it was going to be closer to 2000€...quite a substantial amount to take off our savings!
A lesson for the next steps: factor in unexpected costs in the moving abroad budget!
So, there we were, just randomly looking at flight fares over the beginning of 2019, having September 2020 in mind, roughly. No tickets for these dates were available so long before anyway. Plus, we were more focused on soon becoming parents for the first time!
A few months passed, baby arrived, we took our time to get into the swing of things. October 2019, talking about our further moving and time schedule ideas, we had another look at tickets to see if fares for September had showed up. They did… and were looking pretty interesting!
Airlines offering adequate onboard comfort, reasonable luggage allowance, quite short stopovers and in airports we knew were fairly pleasant (as far as an airport can be pleasant!). All of this for a very nice price compared to what we’d seen before! Suddenly we considered buying almost an entire year from moving. There was no rush at all, but the opportunity was there. We chatted a bit longer and agreed that we probably wouldn’t find cheaper flights later on.
Let’s take the tickets!
How excited we were until…THE DEVIL OF TRAVEL WEBSITES ENTERED THE GAME!
We had our eyes on a particular selection that was displayed under 1700€ for the three of us. Here we go: entering our identifications… going to the payment page… entering our credit card info… and all of a sudden, the price rose to above 1800€!
We tried further options to have the initial price back, and finally had to change computer… process again, identification, payment… price rose again! We finally understood that the travail websites suddenly add “credit card costs”. Evil manipulation to direct you to a specific website if I may…
Disappointed, we were about to push back the purchase. Although, with a bit more thought, even with the price now over 1800€, the deal was still good. But still a lot of money… clicking on this purchase button felt like a rollercoaster in my brain!
Time to make it real…