I’ve heard there are discount fares available for airline tickets for family emergencies such as funerals. How do I go about getting one of these? I probably need to fly tonight or early tomorrow morning.
Been there, done that, unfortunately. Airline policies vary, but generally will only get you a percentage off of full coach last-minute fare. For me, it turned out to be waaaay cheaper just to get a regular ticket from ATA, who has no advance purchase requirement ($260 RT from Chicago to NY, rather than typically half off a $1000+ last-minute fare with a major airline.)
FTR, when they changed the funeral date (yeah, I know, who the hell does that, especiallly for a Jewish funeral? but the East Coast doesn’t deal very well with blizzards!) ATA didn’t charge me to change the return when I explained the circumstances. However, this might be a case when it’s worth it to spend the extra $50 or so to have a good travel agent handle the mess.
My condolences, and good luck.
We bought a ticket at the regular fare, then had to produce a death cert (the funeral home provides special copies for this purpose).
FTR, you can also get a discount on hotel in some places.
My experience has been bereavement fare is 50% off Y class/full coach, which is far from a screaming bargain, though in particular circumstances, might be the best available. More often, you will find an equally cheap/cheaper option on Orbitz.
Just went through this two weeks ago, on 24 hours notice. Everyone used regular cheap airfares. The berevement fares really just guarntee that you get on the flight you want, but the price isn’t a huge bargain.
I rode down to Biloxi with a friend this summer, and when I got back to my room (3am) the first night, I received a message about a death in the family. I had to get to Chicago for the funeral, and other family members were driving there from North Alabama, so I only needed a one way ticket. I was able to catch a flight leaving in about 3 hours, having to change planes in Atlanta.
I didn’t have a lot of choices due to the time of night, the number of airlines serving Biloxi, no web access, and a very short time to get it together, but I received about 50% off the ticket when I explained the situation.
When my aunt died, my mother just called all the airlines and asked if they had bereavement fares for family members’ attending funerals and bought the cheapest tickets (which were $400 and something per ticket, round trip, flying from Chicago to Denver CO). She had to show a death certificate or letter from the funeral home on the return trip.