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MADELEINE BRAND, host:

Back now with Day to Day. Summer travel season, it is upon us.

ALEX CHADWICK, host:

But just how to travel? There is the old fashion road trip, and that crazy price of gas.

BRAND: So what about airline travel?

CHADWICK: We read this week about a Florida woman. She flew from Fort Lauderdale, Florida to Los Angeles for just 18 dollars. Her name is Gilda Chavez Diaz. She said that Spirit Airlines' flight was free. She just had to take care of taxes. And that's not the only deal she found.

Ms. GILDA CHAVEZ DIAZ: (Traveler) February, we went to Vegas, and it was total price for my husband and me was 32 dollars. I think the most expensive was the one for San Tomas which was 68 dollars.

BRAND: Gilda says she finds these deals the old fashioned way. She checks the Spirit Airlines website, if that's the old fashioned way, every morning, and she has signed up for their email alerts too.

Ms. DIAZ: A week ago I got the email for Puerto Rico. It's 29 dollars. I bought 15 tickets because the whole family is going.

CHADWICK: George Hobica from airfarewatchdog.com says these kinds of deals are actually all over the internet, and the key is to go direct to the airlines who are doing in-runs around websites like Expedia or Cheaptickets in order to drive traffic to their own sites.

Mr. GEORGE HOBICA (Manager, airfarewatchdog.com): American Airlines has what they call the DealFinder at aa.com/dealfinder. And they will send you promo quotes. Southwest has their DING fares at southwest.com/ding. JetBlue has done promo quotes. So, the trick is to sign up for all these airlines, newsletters and widgets, and you'll find some incredible deals.

BRAND: Still, George Hobica says, the thing to watch out for is the fees on top of those cheap airfares. Fees for things like excess baggage or changing your flight or even fees for using your own frequent flyer miles.

CHADWICK: That's not fair, but if you know about it ahead of time, you can fly coast to coast for actually virtually nothing. As to prices going up, in 1972, George says he bought a new car for 2,000 dollars.

BRAND: That same winter he flew from New York to London for 99 dollars each way.

Mr. HOBICA: Well, guess what, you cannot buy a new car today for 2,000 dollars, but you can buy a ticket in winter from New York to London for about 198 dollars round trip. Now, the taxes are high, and the fees are up, but airfare prices are ridiculously low. No wonder the airlines are losing money.

BRAND: George Hobica runs airfarewatchdog.com.

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