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How I Get Cheap Flights in Asia

Whenever I fly anywhere in Asia I use kiwi.com!

Seriously, I am a major bargain hunter and kiwi.com has always delivered cheap flights in Asia.  From my experience they offer the cheapest flights in Asia. This is my kiwi.com review.

Before  I show you how I get such cheap flights I wanted you guys to see actual proof of my kiwi.com patronage!

When I flew from Manila to Bacolod Cebu Pacific (the spirit airlines of the Philippines) wanted $80 one way on their website. Kiwi.com got me a ticket for $50USD out the door!

By the way I had a great time in Bacolod! I got to see the ruins, Dumaguete, and went say the Maskarat festival!

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How does kiwi.com get such good deals?

Airlines will often set aside a certain number of seats on a particular flight to help fill the plane.

Remember for an airline empty seats = lost revenue

Those seats go to the various discount travel sites which them sell them to bargain hunters. Like me! But Kiwi goes a step further.  They book the flights based on the cheapest routes not necessarily which airlines have the same code shares.

What this is means is sometimes if you have a connecting flight you may have to re-check your luggage since the airlines don’t have a code sharing agreement. It’s worth noting that I’ve used them to fly to many destinations in Asia including Cambodia, Thailand, and the Philippines and I’ve never once had to re-check my bags.

This may be because, for me, the fewest connecting flights is a high priority in my booking process. I won’t make 3 plane changes just to save $10!

I’m on vacation darnit! 

Does Kiwi.com offer any guarantees in case I miss a connecting flight?

Last time I booked with them they indeed offered a guarantee.

The guarantee is for :

  1. Your connection is missed due to a delay that isn’t your fault
  2.  Your flight is cancelled
  3. The airline reschedules your flight

If any of these things occur they will 

A. Reschedule you at no cost to you

OR

B. Give you a full and complete refund

How else do they guarantee their service?

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Free transportation to another airport
If it turns out that the only reasonable alternative to get you where you need to go is transport to another airport they will shoulder the costs to get you to another nearby airport
Overnight accomodation
If your flight is delayed more than 8 hours they will put you up in a nearby hotel at no cost to you
Free food!
If your flight is delayed more than 4 hours they’ll give you free food and drink!

Limitations to the guarantee

In order for the guarantee to be valid you do have to be reasonable. Therefore they ask that you:

  • Inform [them] as soon as you are aware of any of the situations above.

  • Respond within 24 hours to all [their] offers.

  • Don’t make any flight changes without [their] approval.

  • If [they] agree that you should buy a flight that’s not available online, [they] need to receive your email with proof of payment within 14 days.

Kiwi.com Guarantee 

I’ve used their guarantee myself!

In the middle of a SE Asia tour my flight from Siem Reap to Bangkok was cancelled.  I wasn’t sure what was going to happen.

Maybe I’d have to spend hours on the phone? Maybe I’d have to shell out another $200! Ouch!

Nope! Kiwi took care of me. Before I even had a chance to get to an internet connection good enough to use Skype I had already gotten this email.

Check to see if this if they still offer this garauntee

Is kiwi.com a legit?

As a loyal customer of kiwi.com I can sincerely say that kiwi.com is a legitimate airline discount ticket broker. Contrary to popular belief companies that don’t provide value or always cheat their customers don’t stay in business long.

Kiwi has been around for awhile not to mention they’ve been featured in the New York Times, the Today Show, and Business Insider.

Kiwi.com versus Kayak.com for cheap flights in Asia

Next lets compare Kiwi.com with a competitor with whom I used to book with, kayak.com

For this imaginary flight we’re going from San Francisco California USA to Bangkok Thailand

Kayak.com $1005 


The reason I don’t count the $522 flight is because the trips are 31.5 hours departing and 54 hours (that’s three days!) return! Even a big cheapskate like me wouldn’t take that flight.

Now lets look at Kiwi.com $663USD

Some of you may not want a 37 hour return trip and I’d understand you perfectly. That being said even the second option of $853 is a heck of a lot better than $1005!

Kiwi.com offers special features

Another thing I really like about Kiwi is they offer special features on their search engine to make sure that you get the cheapest flight possible.

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Cheaper alternative dates

In this example I made a mock trip from Manila to Saigon. Thanks to their search algorithm they offered me different dates which would have saved me almost $100USD!

Okay so many search engines do that but what’s good about Kiwi.com’s alternative dates are they realistic viable dates you would actually choose. So yeah you may save a few dollars if you shorten your stay it one night but what leisure travelers would do that?

They offer free live chat support

This is a huge plus for those of us living in Asia!

We all know how astronomically expensive phone service is here.  That means waiting on hold for half an hour to talk to a human  just isn’t an option for many travelers in Asia.

Having used it myself I can truly say it was a lifesaver.

Anywhere search

A feature a backpacker or anyone else really will love is their search anywhere feature. Say you’re not sure where you want to go next for holiday and you just base your decision on where you can get the cheapest flight. Kiwi’s got you covered! They even tell you top destinations other people have selected!

Price calendar search

If you’re reading this then price is paramount when selecting flights. Well kiwi.com offers a great little calendar so you can select the absolute cheapest flights.

Price alerts

Kiwi.com offers price alerts to help you get the best deal on your flight. This is course best used if you are booking far in advance. It’s super ear to do!

They changed my flight when I got sick even though I didn’t have insurance!

We all know that once you buy a discounted flight you’re stuck with that flight, right? Wrong! At least wrong when it comes to kiwi.com.

When I needed fly from Manila to Cagayan de Oro for business reasons (I was thinking of investing in a call center) I unfortunately got really sick and couldn’t go anywhere. Normally that would mean my money was lost.

Well kiwi.com still managed to accommodate me.  They changed my ticket at no additional cost. Now I will say the customer service agent made it clear he was making an exception.

Therefore I am not promising that they will do this for you or anyone else. However, I was shocked as I’ve never had a travel agent website be so accommodating before.

 Where you might run into problems using kiwi.com

Sorry kiwi.com even though I love you I gotta put you on blast just as little bit since there are some concerns that I must address just to be fair. It’s nothing personal you understand.

Issues with lots of connecting flights

Some customers using them for long flights with lots of connections complained of missing their connecting flights while waiting for their luggage.

How to prevent this from happening

Again, I strongly advise against booking flights with more than one maybe two–at the most–connections. Do you really want to risk your stuff getting lost, getting stuck at the airport, or loooong delays just to save a few bucks?

I’ve traveled to almost all four corners of the world and I can’t once remember taking more than one connection!

Issues with flight rescheduling without knowledge of the passanger

I also found some complaints online about flights being rescheduled without the knowledge of the passenger. I’ve booked with kiwi over 10 times and I’ve never had this happen. When my flight from Siem Reap to Bangkok was cancelled kiwi.com immediately sent me an email with another option .

Therefore, I think Kiwi has really improved in this area.

How to prevent this from happening

Always check your flights the night before take off with the airlines’ own website before you leave home or your hotel.  Inform them immediately if you notice a problem. They stand by their service and I’m living proof of that.

Other frequently asked questions

Does kiwi.com charge booking fees?
No! Booking fees are really going the way of the dinosaur in the online travel industry
Do I need a credit/debt card to use kiwi.com?
At this time there is no way to pay cash. However you can use paypal in many instances.
Can I pay over the phone?
No, part of kiwi’s methods to bring the lowest prices possible is to only accept payments online with a debit card,  major credit card, or paypal. It’s also worth noting that they don’t accept prepaid visa cards, or bank transfers as well. This is mostly due to fraud concerns.

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