Last July I was in Boston for the Outside the Box music festival. One afternoon, when it was like 99 degrees at 4pm on a blistering hot Sunday afternoon clear sky day, a man was walking around the festival concert grounds handing out free Turkish Airlines blankets. As soon as he walked away, I regretted not accepting a blanket. I had picked up a Turkish Airlines beautiful cloth bag earlier that same day when I went to their booth exhibit.
The Turkish Airlines bag I have shows the same colorful birds in a world map layout.
Hipmunk show Turkish Airlines flights. Google Flights does not.
Over the past couple months there were several occurrences where I saw low fares for Turkish Airlines from San Francisco to Europe on other fare websites like AirFareWatchDog.com and The Flight Deal.
Google Flights does not automatically pull Turkish Airlines fares.
In an email I received from Hipmunk.com a $755 round trip Turkish Airlines fare for San Francisco to Paris caught my eye.
Hipmunk.com search result shows San Francisco SFO – Paris CDG $754.93 round trip Turkish Airlines Dec 3-10.
Google Flights does not load Turkish Airlines fares. On the same December 3-10 dates, Google Flights gives low fare option of Aeromexico via Mexico City for $988 round trip .
Hipmunk.com and Google Flights for low fare searches
It pays to shop around for ticket prices on different sites. This is a big omission in Google Flights when Turkish Airlines offers a ticket from San Francisco to Paris for $200 to $400 less than the ticket prices retrieved on Hipmunk.com.
The main advantage of Google Flights is its ticket price map for airports. Hipmunk.com has a 90-day fare calendar, however, it did not pull up the Turkish Airlines $755 ticket when SFO-CDG was entered.
Hipmunk.com fare calendar for SFO-CDG shows low fares over $1,100 round trip, similar to the $1,136 and $1,163 fares from United, Delta and Air France seen in the Google Flights search.
Hipmunk.com shows Turkish Airlines itinerary and provides several links to online travel agencies to complete the purchase.
In my experience, a ticket pricing on Priceline at the meta-search rate is a valid ticket price.
San Francisco SFO – Istanbul IST – Paris CDG – IST – SFO
$758.20 December 3 – December 10, 2015
Once the fare has been verified, then a search of Turkish Airlines shows many more date options for this $758 fare for San Francisco to Paris. Flying to Istanbul adds about another 5,000 miles to the 11,000 miles direct flight distance flying round trip between SFO and CDG Paris.
You can sit on the money saved flying Turkish Airlines to cushion your butt for the 16,000 mile journey to Paris via Istanbul.
Bottom Line: Hipmunk searches Turkish Airlines fares. Google Flights does not load Turkish Airlines fares in ticket price searches. Here is an instance where searching Hipmunk for San Francisco to Paris tickets turned up a low fare $200 to $400 less than Google Flights showed for the same travel dates.