Using Momondo to Purchase Travel Services: Is It Really Worth It?

Using Momondo.it to purchase travel services is an excellent way to save time and, occasionally, money as well.

Are you sure you know how it works and how to make the most of its potential?

In this post, I’ll share all the secrets to using Momondo and getting the best results from its features.

What is Momondo?

Momondo is a website that was founded in 2006 in Copenhagen. You shouldn’t confuse Momondo with a travel agency because, as they explain on their website, it acts as a price comparison tool, not a travel agency.

If you plan to use Momondo, think of it as a price comparison tool that doesn’t sell products but operates like a search engine. Its goal is to display and compare the different alternatives found on the internet and to guide you to the websites where the services are sold for purchase.

When you buy a flight, a hotel stay, or other services, you’re not buying them on Momondo but directly on the websites that offer them.

What can you purchase on Momondo?

The site was initially created to sell air tickets. In the early 2000s, the trend of low-cost flights and the boom of last-minute flights took off, leading adventurous travelers to the airport with suitcases packed for all seasons, ready to jump on the first flight in any direction (those were the days!).

Over the years, airline marketing techniques have evolved. Their goal is to sell as many tickets as possible at the best price (from their perspective), and finding discounted tickets has become increasingly challenging.

For more information on buying air tickets, I suggest reading the post dedicated to Travelers No Stop.
If you want to refine your skills in choosing a hotel, also read “How to Choose a Hotel.”

The air ticket market has become more complicated, and Momondo has adapted by adding more products to its offerings. First came travel-related services like car rental and hotel rooms. Using Momondo today, you have the possibility to purchase almost all other services necessary for organizing a trip:

  • Activities to do once you arrive at your destination: tours, guided visits, and excursions
  • Complete vacation packages
  • Train tickets
How to Maximize Your Use of Momondo

To maximize your use of Momondo, explore and learn to use the advanced features available to find the best combination for traveling:

The Explore function allows you to get an overview of all the offers present and use filters (budget, duration, and flight layovers) to only see those that fit your preferences.

If you’re an adventurous traveler and really want to explore the world, you can use this function to find the best deals and decide to head to destinations based on the best conditions (price and duration) found on this page.
Just enter the departure airport and select “Anywhere” as your destination.

By setting filters, you can use Momondo to find trips that fit your budget. You can also use filters to select the trip’s duration and type.

Being highly flexible with your departure and return dates is crucial to maximize your use of Momondo!

This way, you can leverage the “price calendar” feature to identify when the price is lowest.
Simultaneously, you can see the price fluctuations of flights and get an idea of the best time to plan your departure.

If you have a high degree of flexibility in your departure dates, I recommend using Momondo by activating the “Alert” function, which allows you to receive email notifications when the flight price drops. To use this feature, simply toggle the switch found in the right column just below the “See prices” button.

Using Momondo to Purchase Travel Services

The “Forecast Chart” function To access the most powerful tool that Momondo offers you, you need to:

  • Select the departure and arrival airports
  • Enter the departure and return dates
  • Click on the “search” button
  • Click on the “Flight Chart” buttonUsing Momondo to Purchase Travel Services

At this point, you will see various charts that will accurately tell you which is

  • the most affordable month (and day) to travel on that flight
  • the best time to travel
  • the most convenient airport from which to depart

All this information is available for FREE, and if you can decide with great flexibility your departure and return dates, you can purchase your tickets at the lowest price available.

Furthermore, Momondo guarantees to provide you with the information to guide you to purchase the ticket at the best price available on the web. If you find a lower price (after purchasing on Momondo), the site will refund you the difference via bank transfer!

The “Trip” function” allows you to create a record of your trips (or a plan) and share it with friends and potential travel companions, including all details about costs and places to visit.

How does Momondo work?

Imagine a search engine like Google is dedicated only to travel and has indexed websites that sell tourist services by establishing affiliate contracts, collaborations, and agreements with all the tourism service providers in the world to offer you the services you need at a very competitive price.

So, when you use Momondo to purchase the tourist services necessary to plan and organize your trips, you have access to a gigantic (and functional) search engine dedicated to tourism.

Momondo earns from commissions recognized by the providers (the websites where you make purchases) after you have purchased a product or, sometimes, even after you have just clicked on an advertisement.

According to Momondo, the service you use is entirely free.

Momondo’s assumption is that the price at which you purchase a tourist service (hotel, flight, car rental) is the same (or even lower) than the price at which it is sold and that the commissions paid are a cost only for the seller.

What Momondo claims is almost always true. The price comparator is connected to thousands of websites and has access to privileged rates applied in function of the large quantity of tourist services sold.

Using Momondo to Purchase Travel Services

Is it always beneficial to use Momondo?

The truth is slightly different: while it’s true that rates offered by Momondo are very competitive (and unbeatable regarding airfares), it’s also true that not all providers have the same agreements, and some tourist services like stays or activities at the destination can be found at lower prices.

Other services, although available, are not present on Momondo simply because they haven’t reached agreements with the platform. These are smaller operators who can’t access for various reasons:

  • They are too small and do not guarantee enough receptivity to justify their presence on the site.
  • They do not want to recognize commissions to intermediaries.
  • They have chosen to apply a marketing plan that does not include presence on intermediary sites.

If your goal is to save money or to find alternatives offered by local operators (working outside of the large circuits), you need to refine your search and use Momondo only as a comparator.

You must compare the results obtained by consulting Momondo with those you found online (using Google or other alternatives). You’ll find many differences and, especially, discover all the small local operators selling their services outside the Momondo universe (and intermediary circuits).

The difference is not only in price but also in the human relationship you can establish by directly contacting those who will sell you the service you need. And it is precisely by establishing direct connections with these operators that you can find great opportunities to plan your trip!

I’m not referring only to savings in terms of costs but especially to the possibility of discovering more humanely managed entrepreneurial realities and less automated, which could be an opportunity to truly visit a destination off the beaten paths of mass tourism.

Your trip could benefit in terms of budget optimization but especially for the human dimension and a more realistic experience closer to the reality of the country you are visiting.

Obviously (as also happens for Booking, Trivago, Expedia, and all the others), the guarantees and safety offered by the larger portals are almost always the element that makes the purchase safer and recommended.

If willing to take some risks, one can look for lower rates, but often, this involves giving up the services, guarantees, and peace of mind that the large portals offer.

Moreover, by turning to smaller, less structured operators (or directly to the final sellers of the services), you won’t have access to the fabulous “customer care” that the giants of online tourism provide if you decide to use Momondo.

In some cases, it can be precisely the “customer care” department that makes the difference and makes the purchase more appealing on the large portals: imagine purchasing a service in a foreign country, in a remote location, from a small operator. Even just communicating with him could be a problem!

Using Momondo to Purchase Travel Services

Is Momondo Really “Free”?

You should consider that, despite what they say, the guarantees, customer service, and use of the site have costs that, in the end, directly or indirectly, will impact your budget!

It’s true that Momondo only earns from commissions recognized by the sites on which you make your purchases, but it’s also true that those sellers, in calculating their prices, will have considered (and included a markup for) the commissions to pay to Momondo.

There’s a difference between air travel and stays in hotels of large international chains (for which Momondo definitely has an advantage) and activities (Tourist Guides, Excursions, Rentals) or B&Bs and room rentals that, being too small, do not fit into the large circuits present on portals like Momondo.

If you want to organize a trip that is a true life experience in the country you visit, you need to step outside the major tourist circuits and create a personalized itinerary by searching for information on possible alternatives that are not part of the mass tourism circuits.

Keep in mind that using Momondo to organize a “touristic” trip is a great choice, but you should also consider that to live a true travel experience, you need to devise an itinerary outside the tourist flows and look for direct information on all the possible (and many) alternatives you have to experience your trip in the real reality of the place you are visiting.

By purchasing directly from tourism operators, you seriously risk not being able to solve potential problems and having to look for alternative solutions at the last minute, often losing money as well as the precious time you spend on vacation.

An experienced and enterprising traveler has no problem navigating the issues that may occur during the trip and finding last-minute alternatives.

Only you know your abilities and your willingness to face unforeseen events and setbacks, so only you can decide whether to purchase the security offered by large operators or to trust the honesty and professionalism of small ones. Everything depends on you and the type of trip or experience you want to live.

Using Momondo to Purchase Travel Services

What’s the Best Way to Use Momondo?

My advice is to use Momondo the same way all other price comparison sites are used: find the service we need at the best conditions, save the search and then go back to Google (and all other portals) to look for the same service at a better price. Essentially, you should follow the same strategy I suggested for Booking.com and try to outsmart the algorithm that determines your search results.

Here’s how to best use Momondo:
  • Register on the Momondo portal by correctly entering all your data and agree to data tracking at least 30 days before the day you intend to purchase the services you need for the trip. It will be very useful!
  • Search on Momondo for the services you need to organize your trip. Select all the different possibilities: Flight only, Flight plus Hotel, Flight plus Transfer and Hotel, Flight, Hotel, and car rental. Choose the combination you prefer.
  • Use filters to refine your search and choose the services you need.
  • Take note of the names (and websites) of airlines, hotels, rental agencies, and the best prices you found on Momondo.
  • Save your search on Momondo and activate alerts for flights and travel programs you have selected.
  • Access Google and visit all the provider websites Momondo suggested, but this time open them directly from Google (without going through Momondo).
  • On all websites (including Momondo), follow all the steps of the purchase process up to the cart and abandon just before entering your credit card details. By doing so, the site will have tracked your profile, and you will have clearly shown your intention to purchase!
  • For at least the next 7/15 days, perform searches (using Google and all Momondo competitors), returning daily to the portals and websites (and registering on all, consenting to data tracking), simulating the purchase up to the point of entering credit card details, then abandon the cart just before the purchase.
  • Return to Momondo (and all the websites where you registered and simulated purchases) and compare the results you get with those from the first day.
  • Repeat the process several times and check your email daily (including Spam and promotions folders), and open emails received from the sites you’ve added to your “best proposals” list.

What you’re trying to do is to show Momondo’s control systems (and all other websites, including Google) that you intend to make the purchase and are a customer who really intends to enter all the credit card details to finalize it.

By following this procedure for at least 30 days (but the longer, the better), you will see offers appear and receive emails with increasingly advantageous proposals.

What happens is that all the sites you visited will apply remarketing strategies to contact you again and propose the purchase you abandoned.

You will see ads for the flights you searched for on Facebook, Twitter, and all other social media.
If you do further searches on Google, promotional messages (those with the green label) will all relate to the various sites you visited in the previous days and, very often, will offer better prices than the first day.

However, be careful not to overdo it!
If you notice that prices are stable or starting to rise, save the URLs of the pages with the best prices, start incognito browsing, and return to the pages you saved to proceed with the purchase, or repeat the whole process with another account and, possibly, a different IP address.

It often happens, especially with air tickets, that once you’ve shown your intention to buy, prices go up instead of down. This happens because the airplane seats are limited, and their price varies depending on the demand.

If you always search for the same flight (same day and same time), the price inevitably increases.
To buy at the best price, you must be flexible about the day of departure and seize the moment to buy tickets when their price is lowest.

By consistently following this procedure for at least 30 days and repeating all steps with different accounts and IPs, you will find offers much more advantageous than those proposed on the first day.

Should You Use Momondo for Searches or Purchases? Conclusions:

You can use Momondo as a consultation tool or to make your purchases. It’s your choice, which, as we’ve seen, also depends on the type of trip you want to make. Only you are fully aware of your expectations and needs. Organizing a trip entirely on your own is not easy but not impossible. The internet offers you all the tools to organize a trip like a professional, but remember that by operating independently, you won’t have any safety net or guarantees, and all your mistakes will fall on you.

I think the era we live in is ripe for eliminating all forms of intermediation, but not all travelers are yet ready to operate entirely independently. Using Momondo is still a valid alternative for less experienced and more demanding travelers, while deciding not to use Momondo (and all other intermediaries) is an alternative for those who believe that to travel, you only need the desire to discover the unknown, initiative, and adaptability.

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If you’re reading this blog, you’re an adventurous traveler, and I want to invite you to experience something unique. We are forming a Community of Travelers who will exclusively try out the new digital platform we’ve created to organize and plan trips and vacations entirely autonomously, avoiding all forms of intermediation.

“We believe that the free and spontaneous sharing of information is the key to making ‘traveling’ a habit achievable by everyone.”

When you return from a trip, you possess valuable information: Hotels, Restaurants, Tour Guides, the experiences you’ve had! These are pieces of information you will never use again, but they are indispensable for someone who wants to take a journey similar to yours.

If you’ve lived an unforgettable experience, you’ve brought home all the information necessary to replicate it! So, why not share it?

Why not leave other travelers the information you’ve gathered on the spot or during your experience?

This way, others can save time (and money) and live travel experiences based on your stories. We want to create a database of information available to everyone.

Join the project, and you too can find the information needed to plan your next trip with the help of the community!

We are creating a digital platform where you can find (and exchange) all the necessary information to plan and organize trips and vacations completely autonomously!

All this thanks to the “principle of sharing” and the solidarity among travelers who share information collected during their travel experiences.

If you want to participate in the final phase of the development of this new digital platform and become a Beta Tester (for free) by sending feedback, suggestions, and new ideas…

 

This post is also available in: Italian

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