In the startup world, manipulating big data using complex algorithms has become an extremely profitable business, giving money conscious customers the chance to beat the system and save themselves some cash.
One of the major proponents of such algorithms are flight comparisons sites, which not only save you the trouble of trawling round different airline websites, but also find glitches, loopholes and other non obvious route combinations to save customers money on their air fares.
Interestingly, the Czech Republic is rather active in this market too, with Kiwi.com (formerly Skypicker) and Letuška.cz two major playerrs.
We compared 5 of the most well known flight comparison sites to see how they, well, compared.
To assess their money saving capabilities, we ran a test query of a return flight from Prague to Gdansk, Poland for next month. All of the sites (apart from SkyScanner) returned the same option, a 4 hour flight with LOT Polish Airlines, changing in Warsaw.
Edinburgh based SkyScanner is one of the most well known flight comparison sites. It’s interface is easy to use and provides a lot of options such as number of layovers, journey duration and airline. Some of the other sites were more aesthetically pleasing (some were less so, too!), but it does the job.
In our test SkyScanner was the cheapest by one euro, offering to fly us to Gdansk for only 194EUR but that would involve a longer journey than the four hour one we used to compare the other sites with.
However, the other sites didn’t even find this cheaper option, so SkyScanner get bonus points for that!
On the same flight as the other sites, SkyScanner came out at 205EUR.
Flight price: 205EUR
...or 194EUR for 7 hours flight travelling time.
Hopper (app only)
Hopper is an app which compares flights and other travel needs. Founded by Canadians but based in the US, Hopper was very easy to use and intuitive. One great feature it has is the ability to watch flights to make sure you buy it as the lowest price. One of the worst things about buying flights online is how the prices seem to change based on the day of the week or the amount of times you visit a website.
However, in our test query, Hopper didn’t do so well. It was in fact the most expensive the sites we reviewed, at 212EUR.
Flight price: 212EUR
Momondo is Copenhagen based startup whose features are similar to the other four sites we reviewed, mainly flight comparison but also extends to hotels, car rental and more.
Momondo was easy enough to use and actually came out as the cheapest in our test at 195 EUR, which is great!
However, to be ultra critical, the site is really quite ugly, lots of different colours going on on top of a dark blue/purple background, which just looks really unappealing in the era of white space.
But, it was cheap, and that’s what we care about.
Flight price: 195EUR
And now we move onto the Czech sites, starting with the recently rebranded, and Techloop client, Kiwi (formerly Skypicker). Kiwi has a really nice and easy to use interface and out of the 5 sites, and is the best site to find inspiration for your next trip because of the way you can easily see all the possible flights from your location as well as suggested trips section lower down the homepage.
In terms of our test query, Kiwi actually was a bit expensive at 206 EUR. Once again it found the 4 hour trip with the change in Warsaw, but it didn’t manage to beat Momondo and Skyscanner for price.
Flight price: 206EUR
And finally we come onto the second Czech creation, Letuška. Surprisingly (or perhaps not), Letuška came up with the same price as Kiwi, 206EUR, which again means it was neither the cheapest nor most expensive of the sites we reviewed.
Letuška’s layout is nothing special, but it’s perfectly easy to use. One downside is that there’s no option (that we could see) to put it in English, which might put off some international users. Letuška also offers Visa services and information about studying abroad.
Flight price: 206EUR
So those are our top 5 flight comparison sites, reviewed and compared!
Clearly the test query we ran was the not the most scientific, and it’s perfectly possible that over a number of different queries another site could end up being cheaper. The goal was just to get an idea of which would provide the best deal as well as how easy they were to use and how they looked.
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