as06

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jillibean said:
What are the best websites for buying plane tickets and getting good deals for hotels? I've checked travelocity, but thought I should shop around.


Thanks!

For flights, try Orbitz.com, Expedia.com, and Kayak.com

Both Orbitz and Expedia have hotel information as well, but you might find better rates and information on Hotels.com.

More often than not, you'll find each airline's lowest price on their own website rather than on these travel sites -- but you can at least narrow down your search by first using the kayak.coms of the world.
 

Looque

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Also, you can check the student discount travel site at www.statravel.com. However, be aware that there is less availability on that website and aren't as many flights to choose from. It may be worth checking there, first, though, and then branching out to other websites if you can't find a suitable flight on statravel.

Note: I've only used this for international flights, so I'm not really sure what the deals are like for domestic travel.
 
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DropkickMurphy

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Personally I'm flying myself to my interviews since I will have my private pilot's license by the time I interview.
 

MahSpoon

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DropkickMurphy said:
Personally I'm flying myself to my interviews since I will have my private pilot's license by the time I interview.
What's the cost of that compared to buying a ticket? (Fuel, maintenance, ?)
 

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many sites also have a student section, usually you can catch a break and get cheaper tickets.
 

DropkickMurphy

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MahSpoon said:
What's the cost of that compared to buying a ticket? (Fuel, maintenance, ?)
Well, since it's a rental plane, I don't have to pay maintainence. Fuel is pretty cheap- about $6 a gallon and a lot of rentals you rent the plane "wet" (with full fuel tanks). A Cessna 182 rental is $85 per day wet, plus my $75 per month membership in the local flight club. Compare that to a $250-300 plane ticket where I can't set my schedule to suit my needs. That's also not to mention that my flights if I fly myself to my interviews count towards my IFR hours I need to accrue before I go for my commercial pilot rating. :thumbup:
 

DropkickMurphy

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I've actually joked about starting SDN Airlines to fly people from my area (which will be DC, Maryland and northern VA after this fall) to interviews.....just having them pay for the rental :laugh:and buy me dinner or something.
 

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DropkickMurphy said:
Well, since it's a rental plane, I don't have to pay maintainence. Fuel is pretty cheap- about $6 a gallon and a lot of rentals you rent the plane "wet" (with full fuel tanks). A Cessna 182 rental is $85 per day wet, plus my $75 per month membership in the local flight club. Compare that to a $250-300 plane ticket where I can't set my schedule to suit my needs. That's also not to mention that my flights if I fly myself to my interviews count towards my IFR hours I need to accrue before I go for my commercial pilot rating. :thumbup:
wow :eek: .
 

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Gonna be a Commercial Pilot Physician? :confused:
 

DropkickMurphy

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Haemulon said:
Gonna be a Commercial Pilot Physician? :confused:
Well, it's one of my backup plans. The main reason however is so that if I want to fly trans-Atlantic at some point.....that I can do it. Of course it also has to do with the theory that if you're going to do something, do it 110% and be the best at it you can.
 

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Looque

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MahSpoon said:
What's the cost of that compared to buying a ticket? (Fuel, maintenance, ?)

AHHHH I love it. I have a t-shirt with that frame from the ol' "My spoon is too big!" clip.
 
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www.hotwire.com

use it to book hotels and rent cars (renting cars is very cheap through them...and the car companies they work with are the big 3: Avis, Hertz, and Budget...all this = schweeeeeeeeeeeeeeet deal)
 

LizzyM

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Southwest isn't listed on Travelocity, et al. so check it against the others. I also agree that you'll get a better deal buying directly from the airline rather than going through one of the sites (use them to explore your choices, then open a new window & go to the airline's homepage to buy).

Avoid the last flight of the day, if possible. If it is cancelled, you'll be sleeping over.

Pack your own snacks/meals when possible. You'll get a healthier meal than what you can buy in the airport & you'll save $.

Pack light and "carry on". Not having your interview suit could spell disaster.

Bring a battery operated travel alarm clock or set your cell phone for a wake-up call. Late-comers are frowned upon.
 

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How much time does it take to get a license and how much money?
 

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i would skip the hotel and stay with a student instead. I found that to be more fun, informative and cheap. you get to meet some people, see where they live and what their life is like. most students who you would be staying with live in apartments or houses and not dorm rooms so even if you get stuck on a couch, it's not too bad. it's also a good prep for the interview.
most admissions offices will give you a list of students who are willing to host interviewees. if they don't, you can call the office and they will give you some names.

good luck!! interviewing was fun and not at all stressful.
 

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Buy a garment bag, as it allows you to travel light and doesn't mess up your suit.
 

gostudy

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LizzyM said:
Pack light and "carry on". Not having your interview suit could spell disaster.
Actually I'm going to add to this: you should ONLY pack a carry on with you to the interview. Most times you are staying over one night and there is no reason (for men AND women) to have to pack anything more than what fits in a carry on suitcase. Not to mention you don't have to wait in line to check your bags at the airport and you don't have to wait for baggage claim after you disembark.
 

DropkickMurphy

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Just under $3K is what it's costing me (but that's including IFR certification), but it can run more if you have to log more hours to polish your skills. As far as time commitment, really just depends on how much time you can spend flying per week and how quick you catch on.
 

chewsnuffles

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masterMood said:
How much time does it take to get a license and how much money?
HAHA, I'm totally going to get a pilots liscence to fly to interviews... or not. It sounds good on paper until I have to fly and not kill myself... then it all breaks down I'm sure. But really, thats awsome, and one of the best "brags" I've read, actually something interesting, ya know. Instead of the typical "I'll ride in my daddys mercedes" or something. Your is interesting/cost efficient/practical.
Now I wish that I could fly...
 

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I've done a lot of searching for flights and hotel deals since I travel a lot. I've found expedia.com to be cheapest for a flight and hotel deal. I'm going to Chicago for 4 nights in a 4 star hotel for $420 with the flight included.

If I could, I would love to fly myself there. That would be awesome, your interviewer asks how was your flight, and you could say "It wasn't bad, I hit a bit of turbulence and the plane started to go into a barrel roll but I was able to pull myself out of it and make it to the interview safely." LOL (don't get mad, I don't know any airline terms)
 

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DropkickMurphy said:
Well, since it's a rental plane, I don't have to pay maintainence. Fuel is pretty cheap- about $6 a gallon and a lot of rentals you rent the plane "wet" (with full fuel tanks). A Cessna 182 rental is $85 per day wet, plus my $75 per month membership in the local flight club. Compare that to a $250-300 plane ticket where I can't set my schedule to suit my needs. That's also not to mention that my flights if I fly myself to my interviews count towards my IFR hours I need to accrue before I go for my commercial pilot rating. :thumbup:
holy smokes - this would be a great way to introduce yourself at the interview - be like "i actually flew here myself."

anyway, I used american express travel (on their website) for air/hotel. they usually claim the lowest price, and if you find something lower, just tell them. plus you get 2x membership rewards for whatever you choose, and sometimes they have some sick deals - for one of my interviews i got to stay at the ritz-carlton for $95 a night!
 
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chewsnuffles said:
HAHA, I'm totally going to get a pilots liscence to fly to interviews... or not. It sounds good on paper until I have to fly and not kill myself... then it all breaks down I'm sure. But really, thats awsome, and one of the best "brags" I've read, actually something interesting, ya know. Instead of the typical "I'll ride in my daddys mercedes" or something. Your is interesting/cost efficient/practical.
Now I wish that I could fly...
those of us that post on "any asian indian premeds out here" probably shouldn't go this route, as trying to take flying lessons at this point might seem fishy... :eek:
 

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etf said:
those of us that post on "any asian indian premeds out here" probably shouldn't go this route, as trying to take flying lessons at this point might seem fishy... :eek:
Oh lordy! Get something like this started and in two years everyone will be saying, "To get admitted to med school you need a 36, 3.9, volunteer experience, research experience, shadowing, play a musical instrument, volunteer abroad, speak 3 languages, have EMT-B, a pilot's license, and wear a kilt to the interview."


:laugh:
 

DropkickMurphy

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etf said:
those of us that post on "any asian indian premeds out here" probably shouldn't go this route, as trying to take flying lessons at this point might seem fishy... :eek:
Just make sure that you're clear that you want to learn how to take off AND land. :laugh:
 

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DropkickMurphy said:
Well, since it's a rental plane, I don't have to pay maintainence. Fuel is pretty cheap- about $6 a gallon and a lot of rentals you rent the plane "wet" (with full fuel tanks). A Cessna 182 rental is $85 per day wet, plus my $75 per month membership in the local flight club. Compare that to a $250-300 plane ticket where I can't set my schedule to suit my needs. That's also not to mention that my flights if I fly myself to my interviews count towards my IFR hours I need to accrue before I go for my commercial pilot rating. :thumbup:
Have fun flying your rattletrap C182 at 110 knots wherever you want to go :rolleyes: Figure 100 knots avg wheels up to touchdown + refueling + time wasted taxiing parking etc and it's probably about the same as driving.

Considering landing fees, fuel costs, and time saved/hassle averted, that $200 ticket is looking like a hell of a bargain.
 

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LizzyM said:
Oh lordy! Get something like this started and in two years everyone will be saying, "To get admitted to med school you need a 36, 3.9, volunteer experience, research experience, shadowing, play a musical instrument, volunteer abroad, speak 3 languages, have EMT-B, a pilot's license, and wear a kilt to the interview."


:laugh:
:laugh:
 

DropkickMurphy

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NovemberWhiskey said:
Have fun flying your rattletrap C182 at 110 knots wherever you want to go :rolleyes: Figure 100 knots avg wheels up to touchdown + refueling + time wasted taxiing parking etc and it's probably about the same as driving.

Considering landing fees, fuel costs, and time saved/hassle averted, that $200 ticket is looking like a hell of a bargain.
I actually enjoy flying. That's why I'll take my rattletrap C182 (or a Beechcraft once I have my multiengine rating) over sitting in the back of glorified jet powered Greyhound.
 

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This is a great thread.

Anyway, here's my tips. I think some may have been mentioned already.

- Stay with a student. They can give you good info about the school. They have a solid method of transportation to the school and know where the Admissions Office is (so you don't get lost). Also...it's free. Yay!

- Do not check your bags. Always carry on.

- If you want to review stuff, bring a copy of your AMCAS and that schools secondary. Also, for a while I was lugging along the entire MSAR so I could look at the school's profile real quick. Then I realized I was stupid and started making copies of the pages for just the school I was interviewing at.

- Check on ground transportation from airport to school. I was late to one interview because I was getting in way early (yes, flew in day of) and thought I would just ask at the info desk at the airport how to get there.

Finally, some people probably can't do this, but it's great if you can. I mentioned flying in day of. I was in school and I wasn't particularly fond the larger disruption that happens if you fly in a day earlier than the interview. Also, I found that I couldn't sleep well in hotels because they were unfamiliar and I would always be nervous about getting up on time and getting ready in the morning, etc. I started flying in early the day of near the end of interview season. It was great. No luggage...no making sure you have all the stuff you need to get ready in the morning. Just fly in wearing your interview clothing bringing like a pad and one of those leather bound interview portfolios that everyone has. Then fly out. Minimal disruption.
 

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gostudy said:
Actually I'm going to add to this: you should ONLY pack a carry on with you to the interview. Most times you are staying over one night and there is no reason (for men AND women) to have to pack anything more than what fits in a carry on suitcase. Not to mention you don't have to wait in line to check your bags at the airport and you don't have to wait for baggage claim after you disembark.

...and the airline can't lose your suit/clothes...it happens.
 

somemaybedoc

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BozoSparky said:
...and the airline can't lose your suit/clothes...it happens.
Not if you go carry on. That's my tip, don't check crap. You're going for two days, you don't need a giant hardside case. A garment bag and either a messanger bag or briefcase will do just fine.

Oh yeah, I would be a little cautious about flying in the morning of your interview if it's close timewise. A little thunderstorm can throw you off enough to screw you.
 

musiclink213

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sentrosi said:
Finally, some people probably can't do this, but it's great if you can. I mentioned flying in day of. I was in school and I wasn't particularly fond the larger disruption that happens if you fly in a day earlier than the interview. Also, I found that I couldn't sleep well in hotels because they were unfamiliar and I would always be nervous about getting up on time and getting ready in the morning, etc. I started flying in early the day of near the end of interview season. It was great. No luggage...no making sure you have all the stuff you need to get ready in the morning. Just fly in wearing your interview clothing bringing like a pad and one of those leather bound interview portfolios that everyone has. Then fly out. Minimal disruption.
Eh, I wouldn't do this just because there can be a lot of delays on a plane that could cause you to be late. I once was delayed for a while because some woman had a panic attack on the plane and thought she was having a heart attack and we had to wait for paramedics to get on the plane. And bad weather can kill you too.

I would say if you're nervous about missing classes, just get the last flight of the day after your classes are over. This way you'll still make your interview without worrying about being late the day of, and sleeping in hotels really isn''t that bad. I actually kind of like it.
 
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