Economy flyers may be shut out of the best deals.
- Every day, thank goodness, more of us are being vaccinated, and every day, more of us are booking vacations now. 7 On Your Side's Michael Finney is live with how travel has changed, and, Michael, how it has not.
MICHAEL FINNEY: Absolutely. Now, those who have not been vaccinated are still being urged not to travel by the CDC, but the guidance changed last week for the fully vaccinated. The CDC says for them, travel is low risk. Matt Purcell had two vacations canceled because of the coronavirus. His future plans called for a very careful transition back to normalcy.
MATT PURCELL: We vowed not to do this until we are clear to go, but we work pretty stressful jobs. So we took a chance, and here we are. We're booked for Maui in May.
MICHAEL FINNEY: It has been hard putting off vacations. Just ask Pleasanton's Debra Littrell.
DEBRA LITTRELL: We are diehard travelers. Whenever we can afford to go, we go. And so I just jumped at the chance to book just a little Hawaii trip.
MICHAEL FINNEY: If you're ready to book travel again, be aware the rules have changed for the better. Changing flight dates used to be reserved for big buck flyers. Now even yahoos like you and me are getting a break.
SCOTT KEYES: You can actually change your dates without having to pay any penalty to do so. If your new flights are more expensive, you do have to cover the fare difference, but on most airlines if your new flight is cheaper, you actually get the difference back in the form of a travel credit.
MICHAEL FINNEY: Scott Keyes knows all about these things. He's the founder of Scott's Cheap Flights. He says if you want in on this [? deal, ?] you have to pay attention.
SCOTT KEYES: There is a loophole the size of Texas. And that's that it doesn't apply to basic economy fares.
MICHAEL FINNEY: So the deal doesn't work with many rock bottom fares, unless you fly with Southwest, where most flight changes are free. Now, there are some amazing pandemic deals still out there, but if you wait too long, Scott says they'll be gone.
SCOTT KEYES: If you wait to book your summer flights until, let's say, May, chances are there's not going to be many or any cheap flights left by then.
MICHAEL FINNEY: Domestically, the CDC says for the fully vaccinated there is no longer a need for testing. However, the rules get complicated for those going abroad. Make sure you understand the rules for your destination before traveling. And, Dan, it gets complicated going to Hawaii, too. Now, the rules are expected to change, but right now you need to test within three days before you get on a plane. The rules are complicated. They change all the time. Make sure you know what you're doing before you go to the island.