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Charter flights

Location: Plane tickets / Charter flights


For holidaymakers, but not only...




A charter flight is, by definition, a rented/hired flight that is "fed" with passengers usually by a travel agency, rarely by an airline. Charter most often is used to fly to popular vacation destinations and is a periodical, generally unscheduled flight.

Tickets for charter flights are sold by travel agents in most cases, because they are the ones that primarily focus on vacation packages.  

Usually charter tickets are sold by group operators and are included in a vacation package, but obtaining them separately is also possible.

Sometimes certain airlines rent aircraft of other carriers to fly their passengers to destinations where their own planes don't. Most often small airlines operate charter routes to faraway vacation destinations, but major carriers also hire aircraft to carry people where they cannot reach.

Charter flights are cheaper than scheduled flights, in most cases and are generally economy class, sometimes include business class seats too.

Usually during summer, spring, these types of flights are abundant.

If you want to obtain cheap plane tickets, this possibility should be kept in mind, especially if you intend to go on a holiday.

If you have other reasons than going on holiday, you should still check the charter flight offers. You could, for instance combine multiple flights to reach your final destination and then back. Fly charter to the nearest place possible to your final destination and then fly with whatever you can further. This is however, risky. You need to have the whole trip well planned and all tickets obtained for the whole trip (preferably round-trip) and only then fly away.

Charter has several disadvantages. Somehow similar to low cost airline flights... Cramped seats, poor in-flight entertainment. This is mainly due to the fact that these flights are being served primarily by smaller and less modenr airplanes, but not always.

When flying charter, you must know that there is less flexibility in changing your schedule. If you change your mind about the flight time or you wish to modify the route, either high re-booking fees will be required by the operator or they will simply deny you any modification. Usually there are no refunds either. The inflexibility is mainly due to the fact that you buy the airline tickets from a second party, not the airline that owns the aircraft.

You should dig deep to find charter flights, because they are not advertised intensively by the operators, so don't expect to find published airfare deals.

Seats still remain unsold quite often. This is when discounts are offered by the agents, sometimes in the form of last minute flight deals. This is however more rare then in the case of ordinary scheduled flights. Charter is generally limited in time, for a period, such as flights to Mallorca during the summer. Towards the end of the holiday season more unsold seats remain. At the beginning, it's quite impossible to find unsold tickets.


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