Do repeated flight searches trigger plane ticket price hikes?

ExpertFlyer Hot Topics — Where the Rubber Meets the Runway

It’s been an accepted truth among computer savvy air travelers that one should always clear their cookies or ensure that private browsing is enabled when shopping for travel deals (see ExpertFlyer post featuring this advice). The reason being, air carriers’ use of dynamic pricing may show higher prices if you click on a flight more than once.

flight search recently posted a report debunking this practice. “If the airlines were to raise prices because of browser cookies (targeted individually) there would be air travel whistleblowers and senators running to microphones for legislation to prevent it,” said Seaney. “What people see when they shop multiple times and prices are changing is a reflection of inventory changes, data caching techniques and the fact that prices generally get more expensive closer to departure date, even within a day.”

However, according to William McGee, an aviation adviser for Consumer Reports, he’s seen evidence that this pricing based on search history may not be entirely a myth.

Read the full story here.

One Comment on "Do repeated flight searches trigger plane ticket price hikes?"

  1. Kathy K says:

    So I’m supposed to believe my senators would “run to a microphone” to protect ME, when they accept huge dollars from airline lobbyists every year and they only get something from me once every 6 years (my vote)!? Yeah, count me skeptical!