Wednesday, September 12, 2007


Today I happened to book air tickets after a long long time. We are planning to visit Himachal (again). I was all enthusiastic about planning the trip. But it looks like there are no low-fare airlines as they used to be.

We have a new airport in Himachal now, called "Dharamshala" (actually it's in Gaggal), so I was looking forward for trying it out. Only Air Deccan has flights on that route, and only could give the connecting flight information. has Dharamshala in the destination list, but it ends up showing no results.

So I start booking with makemytrip for a return journey from Bangalore to Dharamshala. I selected the least available fare flights (we had to travel by air deccan, so there was hardly any choice there). Now the tricky part is, by the time it showed the final itinerary page, either departure or return or both ticket cost changed so drastically that it sounded unbelievable. e.g.

The fare for your return flight has changed. The fare has changed from Rs. 4948 to Rs. 6948 per adult. You can accept this fare, or click here to make another search.

I understand that, if I take long enough time to chose my flights, then the availability status would change, causing higher fare. But one thing I don't understand is that if start fresh search again, I can still see those low rates after say 5 mins. I tried this about 5-6 times. I also tried to click fast enough through pages (by blindly selecting first ever options it provided), and I still end up seeing fare changes in the last summary page, even though the whole process took less than a minute. It almost looked like one of those auction sites, where bidding amount changes every time you refresh the page.

I haven't seen this much fluctuation happening before. I wonder what's going on there! How can fares fluctuate so often? I think most of the people would find it too much of a hassle to search again from the beginning and end up accepting the new fares. MakeMyTrip is sure counting on that.

Is this going to be same if I call up their booking office? By the time I provide my details and credit card information, it will definitely take more than 5 mins. So am I going to hear the booking person say "Oh, by the way, the ticket cost has changed and now it's gonna be 2k more. Tell me within next 1 second if you want it or not."


Moonjungle said...

Websites of the airlines are buggy are than a maggot infested dog. I found that sites like are some what more reliable. Now I guess phone booking is the best option. So much for convenience.


Actually the fare you see in the first page is a cached result since yesterday. When you book it, only then they query and find the actual fare. But once actual fare has gone up, they don't update the cache till next day - so on first page you'll continue seeing the lower fare.

Scam: Two websites, X and Y, shows the cached fare in first page. But when you actually book, they'll charge the current price. Everything else being equal, X will get more business if the cached fare displayed is lower than Y.

Geeta Eral said...

Hi There,

First and foremost, let me thank you for choosing Makemytrip for your travel booking needs. We are really glad that you wrote this blog post so that the issue came to our notice. As you have rightly pointed out, Airfares do fluctuate at times depending on user demand, and at times, the fare that may be displayed to you while you book your ticket may change by the time you actually get around to the transaction part.

However, the issue you have pointed out, at first glance seems to be something to do with website cache. Could you let me have more details of your transaction e.g web browser, cookies, etc. It might be of help.

Meanwhile, I'm directing my tech team to look into this and reproduce and resolve this issue as soon as possible. Thank you for your patience!

Looking forward to make your trip, once again in the future.


Geeta Eral
Manager - Customer Delight

V said...

Hi Geeta,

I have faced problems before while using makemytrip in firefox, so I use IE for your site. And regarding cookies, I think the settings are default. If it works for, it should work with as well.

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