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Travel Tip: Not Every Airfare Is Online

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Paper Money Airplane - Cost of Flying - Save With Travel DealsI’ve said for years that you can’t always get the best deal online, and for good reason: Not all airfare inventory is displayed on the Internet.

If you’ve done a Google search for travel recently, you may have missed out on Expedia’s options. A research firm has found that Expedia’s page rankings dropped 25 percent on Google. It’s believed that Expedia used some questionable practices to raise its online visibility, and Google retaliated.

It’s not just search engines that have that kind of power. A few years ago, American Airlines pulled its listings from Orbitz, trying to get people to book through directly.

In return, Expedia made American’s flight options less visible for a while.

Have you ever noticed you can’t find Southwest’s fares on third-party sites like Orbitz or Kayak? That’s because Southwest wants it that way.

So the bottom line is, you’re not getting all the information you need to make an informed decision. Do your due diligence by searching as many sites as possible. Then, find the lowest fare, call the airline, and see if they can do better.

For more savings, visit the travel deals archives.

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