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Airfare is Sometimes VERY Unfair

Updated: Jul 4, 2023

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I'm planning a London trip right now and the client could fly out of either Seattle or Salt Lake City. But, their closest airport is Pasco, Washington, which is a small regional airport with no international flights. I know flights out of there aren't usually cost-effective, so I dismissed it. But, then, my curiosity got the better of me and I did a late-night search for flights from Pasco to London, knowing it would not be a non-stop flight.

What I discovered really kind of made me mad. Sorry, Delta, I love you, but it's almost CHEAPER for me to fly to Pasco to fly back to Salt Lake City to fly to London and that is almost criminal.

We moved from Seattle to Utah in 2020 and one of the few regrets I have about that move is the cost of airfare. Seattle to London could be had at certain times of the year in the mid-$800's. Salt Lake City to London can rarely be found for under $1100. I'm bitter about that because SLC is a Delta hub, now. So, I feel like they are just sticking it to everyone here.

So, it is weirdly cheaper for my client to fly from tiny little Pasco, Washington to London. The stop is in Salt Lake City. The price for Pasco to London with a stop in Salt Lake City in November is $1,019 for Main class. The pay-with-miles price (including the 15% discount Delta is giving to passengers who have their AMEX card) is 73,000 air miles per person.

To get on the SAME FLIGHT in Salt Lake City and fly to London is $1,365 or an eye-watering 105,400 air miles (including the discount). That's a 34% INCREASE for cash and a 44% INCREASE paying with miles for getting on the same flight but not coming from Pasco.

The client will sit in the SLC airport for 2 hours and 8 minutes. If I was flying to London from SLC, I would arrive at the airport and sit there for 2 hours also. So, I am not using more resources in the airport and they are not using less. We sit there waiting the same amount of time for the same flight, yet, they paid a lot less just because they flew from another airport first.

This kind of stuff makes my blood boil.

an airplane

The lesson here is when you are booking flights, check any possible airports around you that you know you could get to. There are times when we have pondered driving to Las Vegas to fly because it was significantly cheaper. When we lived in Seattle, we knew families who would take the train or drive to Vancouver, BC (about 2 hours north) to fly out of there because they were saving a lot of money by doing that.

Now, I'm off to send a note to Delta.........

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