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Scotts Cheap Flights Elite - worth it

I'm already a Scotts Cheap Flights Premium subscriber, but I'm considering buying their Elite product, which as I understand it, is more Business Class/First Class focused. I realize it hasn't been around for too long, but can someone who's sprung for it give me a better idea of how good it is - particularly on BIZ to Europe?

Posted by
3304 posts

If any of your flights is canceled, you’ll have to reach out to them to reschedule and not necessarily the airline because you did not buy the tickets directly from the airline. That is a stressful hassle. I only buy directly from the airlines on their website.

Posted by
413 posts

@Continental, just as an FYI for anyone who reads this post - Scotts isn't an aggregator like Expedia, its a distribution list. I don't know how they do it - bots or search engines or whatever, but basically they scour airline sites and post mistake fares or fares that are really good. They post/email you the deal and where to buy it - ie which airline site(s) are offering the fare, and you buy it from the airline directly - there's no middleman. I've taken advantage of crazy economy fares that they've posted before, but wanted to see how their premium product compares before I spring for the $199.

Posted by
2196 posts

I've been a Scotts Cheap Flights subscriber since 2013 when they first started. Their service has saved me thousands of $$$$ annually as we book 10-12 roundtrip International flights each year for ourselves and friends/family. (My wife is flying internationally tomorrow on a Scott's referred flight). We've been able to score many main-cabin RT international flights for under $400pp. That said, based on the examples I've seen - and in part because we fly so often across the pond - I don't see myself upgrading at this time.

Posted by
849 posts

$199 is too much. Scotts is pretty good with domestic fares, but they don't send emails about international biz class bargains faster than anybody else. I just use You can elect to track a particular fare with fixed dates and a fixed route.

Posted by
21065 posts

Just speculating,,,

It seems to me this type of service (and I've heard good things about SCF) is most valuable to folks who travel somewhat frequently and/or are relatively flexible about where and when they will fly. The odds of learning about a stupendous deal on exactly the routing a more typical traveler is looking for are not nearly as good as the odds of something wonderful turning up for any origin/destination pair.

As a retiree I might benefit from subscribing, but I prefer to take a single long trip rather than multiple shorter ones, and I like to spend a lot of time researching, so I normally have a rather fixed idea about my European gateway airports months ahead of a trip. I wonder whether my strong preference for multi-city flights would also make me less likely to learn something useful.

Posted by
2196 posts

Some good points acraven. Like Barkinpark, I primarily use Google Flights when planning and set up alerts for flights at specific times of the year -- when we know we will be traveling to the US or family & friends are coming to see us. For example, Christmas, Spring Break, Ski Week, etc. As mentioned, on Google Flights you can set up the parameters for your flight requests (# of stops, departure time no earlier than, specific airlines, etc) and you will receive numerous email indicators that alert you to a price change. Google flights is our primary tool for flight selection because of its flexibility and tracking. It's great for planning multi-stop or open-jaw flights. (We also use Skyscanner and Hopper, but Google is consistently our best option),

Scott's is our deal-tracker. It is far more random, although you can (and I do) select specific airports to track. The prices you get with Scott's are sometimes only valid for 24-48 hours, so you have to be prepared to move quickly. It's our indicator of "what could be." For the best deals displayed, the price cuts might be deeper than Google flights but you have to be more flexible regarding when you travel.

Yet, about two years ago, Scott's severely limited their "flights-from-Europe" options. They said it was too much work/expense to track effectively. We still get some flights originating from AMS or BRU, but we use it more now to score reduced flights for friends/family coming to Europe. For me, $199 was too much for the limitations that now exist for flights originating outside the USA and, as Barkinpark mentions, there are other tools that do this for free.

Posted by
3657 posts

I subscribed to the free product years ago and now consider it spam. I really don't care what Spirit or Frontier Airlines have on offer, or routings to Vienna via Raleigh and Marrakech with 12 hour layovers. About a year ago they made it so that you have to log in to see the actual bargain (dates, airline). Anyway the free product is useless and doesn't make me want to subscribe to a premium service.

Posted by
6871 posts

You have to answer three basic questions:
1. Do you plan on traveling in business class sometime within the next year?
2. Do you think it's likely that this product can save you at least $200 off a business class fare (or if they pro-rate your Premium subscription, then that number could be even lower because you may end up paying, say, $150 for it).
3. Other than this product, is there any other way you can shave at least $200 off while spending a lot less (or nothing at all) to get that savings?