CHEAP flight sites are ripping off Brits by up to €125 million a year.
Discount travel sites, such as eDreams, Opodo, CheapOair and Ebookers, lure in customers with deals that undercut airlines’ own prices.
But in reality, unavoidable costs make ticket prices soar to almost double the original advertised price.
Once you take into account additional costs for luggage fees and admin, final prices are almost always more than that offered by the airline itself.
Many sites use additional trickery to up the costs, such as offering a ticket at one price, but only if the customer uses an unusual card such as a Mastercard debit card – only held by one in 100 Brits.
On average, these price hikes average €25 per person for a one-way trip, which totals €125 million from British travellers every year.
But this is not just a problem for the low-cost airlines, also affecting flag carriers like British Airways.
The UK’s Civil Aviation Authority is investigating and is believed to be nearing a ruling on unscrupulous pricing.
An airline insider said: “It will never be cheaper to book via an online travel agent compared to a genuine airline.”
- Gatwick-Malaga: To fly with EasyJet costs €83.73. The initial price from eDreams is €81.48, the final cost is €112.42. Difference – €28.70
- Stansted-Malta: To fly with RyanAir costs €84.99. The initial price from CheapOair is €84.99, the final cost is €113.74. Difference – €28.75
- Manchester-Palma: To fly with EasyJet costs €86.24. The initial price from Ebookers is €103.74, the final cost is €103.74. Difference – €17.50