In 2019 we are all looking to travel smarter. Have you ever lost money because you could not travel and had a non-refundable flight or a hotel reservation? You are not alone. Millions of people lose money on their unused travel bookings every year because they are not aware of any safe and hassle-free ways to resell their reservations. This is where SpareFare comes into play. SpareFare is a revolutionary new marketplace which allows travellers to buy and sell their non-refundable airline tickets, hotel reservations and holiday packages. It is like an eBay which has been specifically designed for travel reservations, but much more secure. There was a significant gap in the market which has finally been addressed.
Galena, thank you for taking the time to discuss SpareFare with me. I was very intrigued when I came to learn about your brand and am excited to share with my audience how they can travel smarter. Can you tell me exactly how the concept works?
Of course – the idea is very simple. If someone cannot go on their holiday, and they have non-refundable reservations, they can sell their booking to another traveller who is going to the same place at the same time. Sellers are able to partially or fully recover the money they paid for the trips, while buyers get a true discount of up to 50-60% by not paying the current price of the bookings. It is a total win-win! SpareFare offers fraud protection to both buyers and sellers and dramatically reduces the risk of travel reservations to strangers by acting as an intermediary.
Travellers can resell flights, hotel reservations and package holidays. Many people are still not aware that they can resell their own bookings!
Can you really transfer a non-refundable reservation to someone else?
Yes, you can!
Let’s talk about flights first. You can transfer your flight to someone else if your airline allows you to change the name associated with the flight. There is always a fee for the name change and they vary from airline to airline. Most low-cost airlines offer name changes as part of their official policy and the name change takes 1 minute to complete.
Hotel bookings are even easier to resell. If the reservation is made through a booking engine, the name change is done through the traveller’s online account. If the booking is made directly with the hotel, a phone call to reception is all it takes. Hotels do not charge fees to change the name on a reservation.
The rules for the package holidays are guided by the travel agents’ terms. However, if the holiday is sold in Europe, it must be transferable, thanks to EU legislation.
It’s a brilliant idea – with a demanding work schedule my family has had to make lots of last-minute changes to our travel plans recently. How did you come up with the idea?
As with lots of startups, SpareFare was started out of personal frustration – I had a problem and there was no solution. It all started when I realised I would not be able to use a flight ticket due to unpredictable work commitments. Full of misplaced hope, I ended up changing the outbound date two times, until I eventually gave up. None of my friends wanted the ticket and there wasn’t a scam-free marketplace I could sell it on. I saw the need for a trustworthy service which salvages costly travel tickets and gives people the chance to fly when all other options dry up.
Who do you think would benefit most from using SpareFare?
We want to make traveling cheaper and easier for everyone! Everyone who has a holiday which they cannot use will be able to benefit from a safe and trustworthy marketplace. Also, all flexible travellers who want to explore the world without breaking the bank can take advantage. The offers on SpareFare are sold at a significant discount from the current live price and they are the cheapest available anywhere, because the sellers have already paid for part of the booking! We just sold a flight from London to LA for £250. Considering this is a last-minute purchase, the prices are amazingly low.
Wow, that does sound cheap! I really liked that your website shows the bid price as well as the current price of the item you are bidding on. Why would you encourage everyone to register for an account?
We don’t have all destinations all of the time, however we do have an email alert option. If you want to go to a specific city, just sign up for the alert and next time we have that flight, you’ll be the first to grab the bargain!
What would you recommend is the best way to travel smarter and make the most of the services offered by SpareFare?
Sellers have to be realistic about how much money they can recover for their bookings – if they ask for too high prices, their reservations end up unsold. We see this regularly and it is such a waste! Buyers need to be flexible about the dates and the destinations they want – that’s when people get the best bargains.
Finally, I assume that you love to travel? Where was your list trip and what did you enjoy most about it?
My last trip was to Thailand. I’d never been to Thailand before and didn’t really know what to expect, but I was delighted by the whole experience. The weather is great, nature is so beautiful, the beaches around the smaller islands are gorgeous, food is delicious and the locals were so nice! And all of that comes at a very reasonable cost. It didn’t feel too touristy, but at the same time the infrastructure is well-developed and we had all we needed. You can get a full hour Thai massage for £8!
I’m right there with you – I had a wonderful trip to Koh Samui, Thailand to celebrate my 30th birthday! My favorite most recent trip was to St Maarten in the Caribbean. Thank you for your time today and providing some insight into SpareFare. I have already registered for an account and I look forward to bagging myself a bargain and starting to travel smarter.
www.sparefare.net – The marketplace for transferable flights and holidays