How to Book Cheap US Domestic Flight Tickets and Car Rentals? Southwest Airline &

Finance >> Affordable Luxury Travel

I redeemed flight tickets to Los Angeles and Las Vegas using Southwest Air Rapid Reward points about one month ago and reserved car rental at Los Angeles via  Both United MileagePlus and American Airline AAdvantage do not offer redeem option if rental car drop-off destination is different than pick-up.  (We plan to fly to Los Angeles, pick up a rental car and drive to Las Vegas, then fly back to San Jose.)  Priceline bidding system does not support this type of itinerary also.  Something is interesting about Southwest and Priceline;  their ticket prices may vary daily, possibly lower prices

Southwest Airline

One month ago, I redeemed four Southwest flight tickets from San Jose to Los Angeles using total 5340*4 Rapid Reward miles.  Last night (Wednesday), I happened to be curious about Southwest offering and checked online.  For the same date and departing time, the fare was lowered to 4174 Rapid Reward miles each way. Without a doubt, I cancelled the four Southwest flight tickets and swapped to the lower priced fares, total saved 
                                (5340-4174)*4 = 4664 Rapid Reward points.

How much is 4664 Southwest Rapid Reward Points?  It is about one-way flight ticket worth from San Jose to Los Angeles.  Southwest Air online cancellation does not charge penalty fee.  The Rapid Reward points immediately return to my Southwest Rapid Rewards account pool for later use.

"What about the car rental fee from"  A quick search reveals, indeed, a lower price.  My original car rental reservation receipt is the following, booked one month ago:
Mid-Size Car, 5 days, $302

My new Priceline car reservation receipt is:
Standard Car, 5 days, $281

Larger car and cheaper price! Mid-Size car rental would be $260.  But a larger car would be more comfortable for 4 passengers and 4 luggages.  Because I did not reserve the car rental via Priceline bidding system, canceling and changing reservation does not carry penalty.

Clearly both Southwest Air and Priceline use some algorithm to calculate their fare price offering.  Maybe Wednesday has a blue magic, so tickets tend to be cheaper. I will check again next Wednesday.

Take-away:  Book Southwest Air and Priceline non-bidding reservations early, come back later to check prices, update or cancel without penalty fee.

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