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2TORIAL
Learn2 Shop for Bargain Airfares (continued)
Step 3: Check out charters

Charter flights can spell big savings on overseas and transcontinental runs, with prices roughly equivalent to those offered by ticket consolidators--generally 20 to 30 percent off major airlines' coach fares. Some charter companies actually fly their own planes, while others operate like consolidators, buying large blocks of tickets from major airlines, then selling them at wholesale prices.

Charter flights have a few drawbacks, however. First of all, you'll usually have a more limited choice of days and times. Charter companies make money by flying less often, but filling every seat. Furthermore, service and comfort is generally below that of major airlines (and that's saying a lot). Finally, cancellations can be a real problem, since the next flight might be days away.

To find a charter flight, call a travel agent or peruse the ads in the travel section of your local newspaper to find a company that serves your destination of choice. If your hometown paper's too small to offer an extensive listing of travel-related businesses, check out the big city paper in the metropolitan area closest to you. Most of them have their biggest listings in the Sunday edition.

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2TORIAL STEPS
Introduction
Step 1: Call a courier company
Step 2: Consult consolidators
Step 3: Check out charters
Step 4: Put your modem to work
Step 5: Research rebaters and travel agents
Step 6: Call airlines directly

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