Money saving travel hacks can end costing a fortune if flights are cancelled or delayed, warn travel insurers.
The firms are warning expats, holidaymakers and business travellers are not covered if they miss a connection while taking a short hop as part of a longer trip.
Many expats can save a fortune on flights with travel hacks – with some long-distance trips leading to savings of thousands of pounds.
The main flight ticket hacks
The three main travel hacks for flights and international rail journeys are:
Split-ticketing: This is when a passenger splits a long journey into two or more sections by booking tickets with more than one airline.
For instance, a flight from Australia to London could be with British Airways between London and Dubai, then Emirates to Sydney or Melbourne.
The principle is the individual tickets are often cheaper when added together than booking a single flight with one carrier.
Skip-lagging: In some cases, it’s cheaper to book a flight to somewhere beyond where you want to go, but get off at an earlier stop.
For instance, a flight to Auckland, New Zealand, will stop at Hong Kong, Bangkok or Melbourne and the cost may be cheaper to one of the stops on the longer flight rather than booking a direct trip.
Skyscanning: An online hack that allows travellers to search flight comparison data for a destination across several airlines and flight dates to find the cheapest trip. Sometimes these involve booking different airlines for the outward and inbound flights.
Insurance expert Brian Brown, of consultants Defaqto explained how airlines and insurers approach the hacks.
“The risk is where people are arranging their own travel with separate travel providers for part of a journey. Typically, this might mean you book a flight with one airline to a European or Middle-East hub, and then an onward flight with a separate airline,” he said.
“If your first flight is delayed and you arrive too late to catch the onward journey, the second airline is unlikely to want to help you – your seat was available and the plane left on time, so they have done all they are required to do and no compensation is payable.”