You can buy cheap flights to almost anywhere in the world. But their low price comes with one major flaw. Those cheap flights are non-refundable. If you don’t make the flight, the airline keeps the money.
In some cases, the airline will even resell your seat, making double the money at your expense. It is the same for concerts, cruises, rail travel, hotels, and more.
This defect of non-refundable cheap flights and bookings is changing. These are the best sites where you can sell your non-refundable flight tickets.
What Is a Non-Refundable Flight?
Around the world, there are many budget airlines. These airlines offer cheap tickets, letting you hop between countries and even continents. However, many of these budget airlines refuse to allow you to refund your ticket once sold. Some airlines give you a 24-hour grace period during which you can still cancel and receive a refund.
The vast majority take your money and offer no assistance if an issue arises. Some airlines offer a refund for an unforeseen issue. But those unforeseen issues are bereavements and similar awful circumstances.
It isn’t just flights. Tickets for concerts, festivals, rail travel, ferries, and more are all non-refundable. At other times, your hotel might refuse to refund your booking. In all those situations, the companies ride roughshod over consumers.
Thankfully, there are now several sites where you can sell your non-refundable tickets. Alternatively, if you want a cheap flight, check out the best cheap flight sites that’ll save you money .
SpareFare is a rapidly expanding non-refundable flight marketplace. Using the tagline of “The Secure Marketplace for Travel Reservations,” SpareFare connects non-refundable flight holders with willing buyers to get everyone a great deal.
SpareFare deals primarily with non-refundable flights. Since then SpareFare has expanded to offer non-refundable sales on package holidays, hotel rooms, and flight vouchers. The combination has seen SpareFare connect travelers lumped with non-refundable tickets to willing buyers looking for a flight or holiday bargain.
The process of buying and selling non-refundable airfares using SpareFare is simple.
SpareFare uses a bidding and escrow system. Buyers can scroll through the list of flights, hotels, or holidays on offer, then submit a bid. The bid is put to the seller who then has 48 hours to decide.
If the seller agrees to the bid price, SpareFare contacts the buyer to deposit their funds into the site escrow. Once SpareFare confirms the deposit, the seller transfers the tickets to the buyer. The transfer process involves changing the names on the flight tickets and reassigning the associated email address for the flights.
You can read more about the process in the SpareFare FAQs.
SpareFare doesn’t take any commission if the seller posts all the information required manually. If the seller uses the assisted booking option (where SpareFare posts the non-refundable flight for you), SpareFare collects 10-percent of the sale.
Transfer Travel is a non-refundable travel marketplace with the tagline, “Bringing people with unwanted travel plans together with those wanting incredible last-minute deals.”
Transfer Travel offers a wider spectrum of non-refundable travel options than SpareFare. With Transfer Travel, you can find discounted non-refundable flights, rail and coach tickets, festival tickets, cruises, accommodation, and travel vouchers.
Transfer Travel has a more extensive range of travel options. A flexible traveler can pick up cheap flight tickets, travel to a festival, and stay in a nice hotel, all at a reduced price.
The travel vouchers offer a greater variety, too. You can find vouchers for flights, hotels, getaways, spas, cruises, and more, with decent concessions.
Non-refundable flight tickets (and other travel tickets) on Transfer Travel are listed at set prices. Though, you can make an offer to the seller.
If the buyer agrees to the set price, the seller receives a notification that Transfer Travel is holding the payment securely. The seller then updates their flight tickets with the buyer’s information and changes the email account linked to the tickets. Transfer Travel holds the payment until 24 hours after the travel date (or the start of the festival or hotel booking).
If the seller doesn’t transfer the non-refundable tickets within 72 hours, the payment is refunded automatically.
One major downside to Transfer Travel is the commission. Transfer Travel takes a 15-percent slice of any sales.
Another way to score cheap flights is by using Skyscanner. Check out the best tips for scoring cheap flight tickets using Skyscanner .
Cancelon is one of the oldest non-refundable hotel reservation marketplaces. It deals in non-refundable hotel reservations exclusively. Hundreds of hotel reservations up for grabs at any one time.
You can use Cancelon in two ways. If you have a specific location and date that you want to travel on, you can use the search function. The biggest cities around the world have the most listings, but it all depends on your dates and availability.
The second option is to use Cancelon Traveler Deals. You can browse a world map of selected non-refundable hotel reservations on the Cancelon site. Pick your location and see if the availability fits your schedule.
Cancelon takes a reasonable 10-percent of the final sale price. Once the payment is complete, Cancelon makes the arrangements for the name change.
UseMyBooking is a non-refundable ticket marketplace for your smartphone, focused primarily on UK travel. Available on iOS and Android, UseMyBooking is “A secure global marketplace for non-refundable tickets, reservations, vouchers, and packages.”
The first thing to note is that you don’t have to sign up to explore the listings and features. That’s a huge plus if you want to check it out without committing. More apps should offer a similar option.
The UseMyBooking app lets you swipe through potential travel choices on the home page. Alternatively, you can use the Hotel, Train, or Others category to streamline your search criteria.
The non-refundable travel and hotel options are for the U.K. So UK-based users will find a travel bargain or two!
UseMyBooking takes a large slice of any sales. Once the non-refundable ticket transfer is complete, UseMyBooking takes 20-percent. Considering the seller is already at a loss, losing another fifth of your ticket sale is painful.
It also means the ticket prices on the platform aren’t as low as they could be as sellers look to recoup a higher percentage of their initial outlay versus the sale commission.
Are Non-Refundable Flights Worthwhile?
Non-refundable flights keep the cost of certain types of air travel low. You never truly know if you will make that flight, hotel reservation, or concert. But you wouldn’t book tickets for anything, ever, if you lived in fear of never receiving a refund.
At least now you have the option of receiving a partial refund on your non-refundable flights or other bookings. Earlier all you could do was shred those tickets and look at your empty wallet.
If you’re looking for cheap flights, why not try using a VPN to see if you can score a massive discount ? Results vary between airlines, flight booking sites, and location—but it can help you grab a cheap flight!
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