*Updated April 2015
It is likely that the price of your vacation will fluctuate, however tripcentral.ca has no control of the prices set by airlines and tour operators.
Do I get refunded the difference?
Prices go up and down fairly often – and when they do go up, we don’t ask for more money from customers. Similarly, new pricing applies to new bookings only: when prices go down, a refund isn’t offered.
Some tour operators offer price drop protection on their vacation packages, but the reality is that the guarantee is loaded with fine print – the biggest one being that it doesn’t cover price changes within 30 days so you can’t cash in on last minute price slashes. Other stipulations include that the customer has to catch it, it has to be available, you can only do one price reduction per trip, and it is usually only offered seasonally and for certain destinations.
Why do they change?
Travel prices are set by supply and demand, and vary greatly based on a number of criteria. Some of these variables include day of week, time of day, advance booking, and scarcity of the product, but more often than not, it simply depends on how bookings have gone so far, and how much is left to sell prior to the consumption date.
Changes in currency exchange rates and the price of oil can also affect pricing, particularly if these changes are sudden and dramatic.
When should I book?
If you’re looking for the lowest possible price, it’s advised to book late summer/early fall for winter vacations because of the early booking bonuses. This is the lowest price tour operators intend to sell their vacation packages for. If you commit to your vacation early on with your money, you’re rewarded with what is most likely going to be the lowest price.
If you plan on travelling during a peak season (Christmas, March Break, etc.), book in advance to secure the hotel you want. Last minute bookings are no longer cheap like they used to be. Airlines, hotels, tour operators, and cruise lines all use “yield management” to adjust their prices up and down depending on market conditions. Those who wait until the last minute often find the service sold out, and in some cases more expensive than in advance.
tripcentral.ca has no control of the price our suppliers ask for their services, nor do we have any advance knowledge of sale activities or even booking levels. Travel suppliers do not disclose to us how many seats they have open, because if they did, no one would book in advance. They may tell us when seats are “limited” or very close to selling out as a courtesy.
It can be frustrating when you notice an airline price change. Unfortunately, the best advice our agents give customers is to monitor prices and book when you see something you’re comfortable with that is within your budget.