Israel, Part I: Introduction

Part I: Introduction
Part II: Rockets, Jerusalem, and the Kelev
Part III: The Incomparable Boaz Shalgi
Part IV: Sacrifice and Courage at Masada, Qumran, and the Dead Sea
Part V: Between Two Caesareas

They say the first step is admitting it.  So, here goes: my name is Andy, and I love mistake airfares. Phew.  Man, they were right, I do feel better.

What are mistake airfares?  Pretty simple actually.  Sometimes, when airlines input airfares into their systems, they make mistakes.  Could be a fat-finger mistake: last year, United accidentally entered the base airfare from SEA-PEK (Beijing) as $25.00 each way instead of $250.00 each way, which led to roundtrips from Seattle to Beijing for $470 after taxes were included.

I’ve been able to take advantage of these on quite a few occasions over the past few years: DFW-Frankfurt for $340, Houston-London for $294, and DFW-Lima for $320.  There are numerous others I’ve passed up, but then I saw a really big opportunity a few months ago.  I was perusing some blogs and and saw someone post what looked like a mistake fare on El Al Israel Airlines: Boston-Tel Aviv for $360 roundtrip!  That’s about $800 cheaper than it should be.  So I went into Deal Hunting mode.  I looked at the fares people were finding, and most of the tickets were routed through London, Paris, or Madrid on American, then onto Tel Aviv on El Al.  Since I know American also flies to those routes out of DFW, I went ahead and looked, and sure enough, the mistake was in play!  DFW-TLV, $438.77/person, roundtrip, all taxes included.  I immediately booked tickets for myself, my brother, and my mom for a quick Thanksgiving trip.

Part of every mistake airfare involves the airline threatening to cancel, and this was no different.  But, as is typical, the airline eventually decided to honor its mistake.  Time to plan for Israel!

We weren’t going to have much time on the ground, so we did something very atypical, for those of you who know me: we hired a private tour guide.  I like to research things myself, but Israel was just too much.  Plus, I don’t speak Hebrew.  I’ll introduce you to our tour guide in my next post.

The flights were on economy on a mix of American and El Al Israel Airlines, and weren’t anything special, so I didn’t post an in-depth flight review like I will for all international premium travel.

Pictures, descriptions, and a heck of a lot of shawarma coming soon!

To your travel,



  1. I just tried shwarma on Monday…. oh my goodness was it amazing!!!!! I’m quite envious of your airfair catch!!

  2. Reblogged this on Javmode.

  3. Hi! My friend sent me your blog from a posting on Texags. My husband and I are both Aggies and we are moving to Israel for a post doc after graduation on Friday. I look forward to your other posts.

    • Wow thanks! Where will you be in Israel?

      • The Technion in Haifa.



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