Use a credit card to book flights on cash-strapped airlines
Photo by Nathan Nelson on Unsplash

In a recent story for the Chicago Tribune, George Hobica of Airfarewatchdog wrote about how to save on airfare and travel this summer. Among his tips was this one, which I thought was great in today’s world of intense competition among airlines:

“If you’re booking a flight on an airline to Europe that is cash-strapped, usually the ones with the lowest fares (R.I.P. Primera, Air Berlin, WOW), only buy with a credit not a debit card 60 or fewer days before travel. If the airline goes belly up your credit card company must eat the charges (federal consumer protection rules apply).”

Thomas Cook is one cash-strapped airline this might apply to. Norwegian Air, too, showed some worrying signs in the early part of this year, though for now it continues to fly. As Bloomberg writes in this story on the European airline market, “while the International Air Transport Association forecasts global airline profits will surge 10 percent in 2019, to $35.5 billion, European carriers will see their earnings slide. That’s because of competition and a delay in the effects of cheaper fuel, due to greater use of fuel hedging contracts that locked in some higher prices.” The chances of you booking a flight with an airline that goes under and leaves you stranded are of course very small, but still, keep that in mind.




Have your own tip? Email it to!
Want to see more tips? Click here for all 1,488!

Want even more travel tips? Sign up here for the Daily Travel Tip newsletter! Just fill in your email address and check the Daily Travel Tip box—and you’ll have Johnny’s best tips, straight to your inbox each day!

If you already subscribe to our weekly newsletter, you can sign up on the same page. Just fill in your email and check the Daily Travel Tip box on the same page and you’ll receive an email with a link to update your preferences. On that page, just click the Daily Travel Tip box and Update Profile.

2 Comments On "Use a Credit Card to Book Flights on Cash-Strapped Airlines"
  1. TDHill|

    Yes, I had a flight on WOW Airlines that had been purchased within 2 months of their demise, and I fortunately was refunded the entire airline charge that was on my Chase Sapphire Reserve.

    1. Johnny Jet Editorial|

      Thank goodness!

Leave a Reply

Required fields are marked *