For a few years, we’ve offered monthly payments as an option for travelers to pay for flights on CheapAir.com. It gives people payment flexibility to manage upfront travel costs, something that’s new for booking flights.
Now, we’re pleased to offer our customers the ability to prequalify for flights and hotel stays. Once prequalified, you’re given a virtual “travel budget” that can be drawn from after you’ve thoroughly researched destinations, accommodation and airfare, and then pay over a specified time.
Why would you consider prequalifying yourself for a travel budget? Perhaps you don’t have a credit card, or would prefer to not use one for these up front travel costs. Sometimes travel expenses are unplanned – an occurrence that was not in the budget but becomes a necessity – like a family emergency. Perhaps you’ve been trying to plan a family vacation, but can’t seem to crunch the numbers in an affordable way that makes sense for your cash flow. When you can’t afford to pay for your tickets in one transaction, and planning would be less stressful if you could defer a large purchase, breaking it up into smaller pieces with a specified budget in mind can help! And finally, some travelers know what they can afford each month and would prefer to work from an overall budget based on a specific monthly payment amount up front.
To see if you qualify, just click on the “Travel Now, Pay Later” green button on our home page. You’ll be taken to our finance partner, Affirm, who’ll help you determine your travel budget amount. You’ll then provide five simple pieces of information (most credit decisions only require your name, phone number, email address, date of birth and the last four digits of your social security number). The credit decision can be made (in most instances) within seconds.
Once you’ve been approved for a travel budget amount, you have 21 days to build out your trip, which can include flights and/or accommodation. As a traveler adds to the itinerary, the cost will be deducted from your total travel budget – in that way, you’ll always have a running total of what you have left to spend in your “account” with us.
After a trip is planned, you’ll be given the choice of spreading out costs over 3, 6 or 12 monthly installments at 10-30% APR. For example, a $700 purchase might cost $65/mo over 12 months at 20% APR¹. Monthly payments are shown in dollars instead of hard-to-calculate percentages, so travelers will never pay a dollar more than what they agree to at checkout.
We love that we can provide this service to our customers. It’s completely transparent and up front with no hidden fees. Travel should be fun and stress free and we think that prequalification is a game changer for folks planning trips, whether they planned for leisure or an unexpected one-off that may need creative financing. In this way, we’re making travel possible for more people who might otherwise find the up front costs daunting.
For more detailed information about how monthly payments work consult our help section. To get prequalified now, please click on the box below.
¹Subject to credit check and approval, and a down payment may be required. Payment options depend on your purchase amount. Affirm loans are made by Cross River Bank, Member FDIC.