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Airfare: Is paying for refundable tickets worth it + am I getting a reasonable quote?

My husband and I are taking a Scandinavian tour in early September. Pricing for 2 on Delta at the Comfort + level (glorified economy) is around $5,000. I have no idea at this point whether this would be considered a good deal or not, so this is one part of my question.
Second, should I pay the extra to get a refundable ticket?

Posted by
2749 posts

Honestly, no I don’t think $5000 for a slightly larger economy seat is a good deal

Granted, it’s not September, but I’m flying to London in business for $2500 next month

I would not pay extra for the refundable if you think you can use the airfare within a year if Something Happens. Delta doesn’t charge you to rebook. They’ll have the credit for a year and you can use. I can’t suggest buying paying extra (can’t even imagine what they’re going to charge you for that.).

Posted by
5 posts

Thanks so much for your answer.
The fee for upgrading to Comfort+ does not make it 2x's as much. The difference is about $400.

Also, let me clarify - I was quoting a price for 2 people - Is you ticket $2500. for 2 people or for 1 person?
Unfortunately we live in a city in the southwest of the USA that is not a hub, so I know that is an extra amount as well.

Posted by
11282 posts

Not knowing your airports, its hard to make any informed comments on how good/bad a deal that is.

What is the cost for comparable seats on other airlines

The difference is about $400.

Per person or total for both tickets?

Posted by
2749 posts

I do think if you gave people starting point and destination and dates we have a better idea on your pricing.

I still think 5000 for two people in comfort is a little high. I don’t know if you’ve flown comfort before but you’re not getting that much more space then you would be in coach

Posted by
5 posts

Thank you, Joe,
At this time, all fares are somewhat comparable. Delta does give a voucher if the trip has to be cancelled, so the extra fee to make both tickets refundable doesn't seem all that necessary. (It would be an extra $450.)

Posted by
2709 posts

I would pay for the refundable tickets. Otherwise you’d want to insure the non-refundable tickets as vouchers are worthless if you can’t use them.

Posted by
365 posts

Are you insuring this trip? If so, no you do not also need to insure your plane tix.

Posted by
5 posts

Everyone has made such good points - thank you.

I would be traveling from Albuquerque, NM and flying first to Stockholm, Sweden and returning from Bergen, Norway - as per the Rick Steves tour. I have to connect in either Salt Lake City or Atlanta and then connect again in Amsterdam.

I've priced other airlines, used sites like Kayak, tried alternate days to fly, and I even checked prices for a trip in May vs. a trip in September thinking that pricing closer to a trip might be lower, but none of the prices really varied that significantly.

If things were like they were before Covid, I would not be shopping so early, but the fact that many airlines are struggling to get enough personnel makes me feel as if waiting too long would really limit my choices in terms of flight lengths, departure times, etc.

About the insurance, I compared the price of adding the ticket cost to the total trip vs. doing each separately, and ironically it was cheaper to do them separately. Delta does allow ticket changes without fees and also does gives vouchers for the difference if the ticket prices goes down, so one thing I will do is to monitor prices.

My husband and I have not been to Europe in a long time and we're excited to go back, so hopefully, this trip will go on as planned.

Posted by
2808 posts

Since I started traveling post Covid and I’m over 70, I have bought refundable plane tickets. Too many things can change in my life at this point to worry about vouchers if I need to change plans.

I can’t comment on airfare from New Mexico. But tickets from Phoenix are higher than elsewhere. There are few direct flights; I think only to LHR. My budget only lets me fly economy.

Posted by
759 posts

Have you looked at returning from Oslo rather than Bergen - are Oslo fares more competitive? Did you look at United - their code shares with Lufthansa might offer some advantages. Everyone says that Scandinavia is an expensive region to visit...

Posted by
4911 posts

Carol, who did you get a $2500 business class ticket with? I haven't seen prices that low for quite awhile. We got lucky this year with a British Airways companion pass that gave us two business class seats for $3700 RT, but I'm already thinking about NEXT year?
Safe travels.

Posted by
2945 posts

I don't know about Delta Comfort, but premium economy on many airlines such as Virgin is a lot more roomy, comfortable, and restful.

We booked premium economy to Edinburgh last summer (for this coming July) for $2800 total.

I don't know about post-COVID. It's just that we have to live with it like the flu. My wife and I got it a few weeks ago and we're 100 percent vaxxed and boosted. It sucked.

Posted by
18251 posts

On my most common international route (a few times a year) an upgrade from Economy Light with a $200 rebooking fee, to Standard Economy with free rebooking: about $175 more so it’s a wash.

For international travel In the last 10 years I have changed (or am about to) 2 tickets out of about 30 tickets.

The math says the upgrade to free Rebooking would have cost me over $5,000 but I would have saved $400.

Math doesn’t work for me. I buy the cheapest ticket that meets my needs.

Posted by
8443 posts

I just looked up your cities for dates in early Sept on Google flights for $1100 RT each. So I think $5000 for 2 is not a good deal, even with the comfort plus.

The flight to Stockholm was American Airlines to Chicago and SAS to Stockholm. The return flight from Bergen was a bit more complicated. Bergen to Oslo, Oslo to Stockholm, Stockholm to Chicago all on SAS, then Chicago to Albuquerque on American. You should book the entire trip through SAS.

Posted by
49 posts

Hi Carol, my husband and I are flying into Munich and out of Bergen in June/July, also from Albuquerque! We booked Delta for $1750 each, going through Atlanta on the way there, Amsterdam and LA on the way back. We didn’t purchase Comfort class, but will use inflatable foot stools that greatly help. As others said, since Delta rebooks for free, we didn’t get refundable tickets.

Posted by
5 posts

Thanks again for all of the replies, it really helps! I will be able to use everyone's advice to finally figure out what I want to do.