Many people like to know whether buying a hidden city ticket can help them save money or not. The answer to this question is “most likely no”.
Hidden city ticket works well by encouraging the passenger to buy the ticket from the point of their origin through their destination to a “Hidden City” at a cheaper price. In simple words, if you are traveling from San Francisco to Chicago, you may look to purchase a ticket for Minneapolis or Milwaukee with a connecting flight in Chicago. Once you reach Chicago you can abandon the remaining of your flight and leave the airport.
So even if buying the hidden city ticket seems to be a good idea due to the monetary benefits, one cannot ignore the risks involved with it.
You can’t use a hidden city ticket for round trip. Airlines have long been into this practice and you implicitly agree to their terms of contract carriage. So if you are flying for a round trip, then don’t even think about abandoning the flight in the middle of the journey. The airline will cancel your unused ticket once they have seen that you have abandoned your flight to the final destination and they are extremely problematic in making any omissions to that rule.
If you are planning to leave the flight in the middle, then you definitely won’t be checking in your luggage. So if you are planning to fly with your carry-on only, then before you get all comfortable, let me tell you this that things have changed.
Many airlines let you check out with your hand carry for the waiting lounge, but they keep your bags checked in at the security gate. So you can’t abandon the flight without your stuff.You are bound to continue your flight to the final destination. Pretty clever, right!
Airlines are getting pretty smart these days; they have adapted the new technique of re-routing in order to avoid passengers abandoning the flight to the final destination.
So if you are planning a nice vacation to Portland and you buy a ticket to Anchorage saving $300, you will be feeling excited about it. But here is when the airline spoils the fun for you. When you arrive at the airport you will find out that the flight has been re-routed and now you will be flying to Colorado Springs instead of Portland.
In such a case you got only two options, either you abandon the trip or you change the tickets, but option two will set you back more than $300 a ticket. Sad right!
If you are a frequent flyer then you will definitely be in love with the perks you get. Airlines mostly cancel all the privileges for frequent flyers on hidden city tickets. Your contract of carriage with the airline strictly and clearly forbids the obtaining and using of hidden air fares, so don’t damage your relationship with the airline. It’s not worth it.