Best Travel Metasearch Websites

Filed Under (hot deals, Vacation) by Jason L. on 08-03-2009

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Image representing Kayak as depicted in CrunchBase
Image via CrunchBase

Today I’m trying to wrap my head around all the travel searching websites out there and how they all differ. I’m putting a list on mandymandy.com so that in the coming months I can keep track of airfare, cruise and hotel prices from SLC to MIA. Today I’ve found some interesting information which I don’t want to forget.

First of all, Kayak.com apparently is the mother of all search sites. They search Orbitz.com and CheapTickets.com, so there isn’t any reason to visit those directly. Yahoo travel ALSO searches orbitz and cheaptickets.

Therefore, Kayak > Orbitz.com, CheapTickets.com, Yahoo Farechase.

Then there is a system called ITA. This is the system that Kayak, Orbitz, CheapTickets and Farecast uses. So, no need to use ITA or Farecast, right? Just use Kayak since it covers all 3. I do have to say though, I like the farecast history report — assuming its truthful.

Bookingbuddy.com

Therefore, Kayak > Orbitz.com, CheapTickets.com, Yahoo Farechase, Farecast, ITA.


Sidestep.com is actually owned by kayak, so cross sidestep off your list also.

Therefore, Kayak > Orbitz.com, CheapTickets.com, Yahoo Farechase, Farecast, ITA, Sidestep.


The top 3 websites are Kayak, Farecast, and Mobissimo.com (never heard of it??).

Searching on the Mobissimo website, I find that they search orbitz, CheapSeats, Cheaptickets, oneTravel.com, Opodo and a bunch of airlines like AA, Jetblue, Spirit, Virgin, etc.

Hmmm, sounds like they use the ITA system? Maybe thats just me. I again refer to the above and now add Mobissimo….

Therefore, Kayak > Orbitz.com, CheapTickets.com, Yahoo Farechase, Farecast, ITA, Sidestep, Mobissimo.

So what are you missing out on if you ONLY use kayak.com? One thing I found is Southwest doesn’t like to be part of any metasearch site, so you should always check southwest.com directly. If you have time after checking Kayak, I would go down the list and check Farecast and Mobissimo.

Other Notes:

For last minute deals, it looks like the best sites are Kayak, Hotwire, Travelzoo, Expedia and Bestfares.

For flexible searching, try Kayak, Travelocity and CheapFlights

Something else to know, besides flying on Sat, Tues or Weds, also try to book at least 2-3 weeks in advance for the best price.

I should stress that you may still be able to get a better deal from some of these websites I’ve disregarded. PLUS they might have a coupon code you can use. Check retailmenot.com for any possible coupons.

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