Travel search engine Farecast officially launched its Fare Guard service, protecting flyers from volatile airfare prices. The service allows travelers to basically purchase an insurance policy on a flight for $10 ($3 until February 1), thus locking in the published rate.
Fare Guard is available for about half of Farecast’s listed flights according to Bob Tedeschi’s NYTimes article.
So how can Farecast offer this service while even airlines can’t predict their own fares? Farecast tracks over a hundred pricing indicators to give travelers an idea of when to book to get the best price (here’s an introduction to the service). Next to each airfare displayed on Farecast is a prediction of whether the price of the flight will rise or fall in the next 7 days, along with a confidence level for that prediction. The more confident Farecast is, the more likely you’ll see Fare Guard available.
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