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Wendy is an IFE Agent responsible for aggregating airline news specifically related to Inflight entertainment. She compiles stories relevant to business travelers, airline industry folks, marketers and tech geeks. IFE News doesn't create original content, but rather posts compelling editorial from global media outlets.

Drop Everything and Search for Flights on Routehappy, Right Now

Drop Everything and Search for Flights on Routehappy, Right Now

Routehappy explained in 90 seconds from Routehappy on Vimeo.

“I’m thinking of flying First Class for my big vacation trip!” – Friend

“Not on [redacted airline] you shouldn’t! It just won’t be the First Class experience you’re imagining. Try [different airline] instead; at least it’s lie-flat seats.” – Us

“Ooh, okay. What else would I get?” – Friend

Cue a two-hour phone conversation that only ended in exasperation on both ends, after googling and browsing airline websites ’til we were blue in the thumbs. If only Routehappy.com had existed last week.

Routehappy actually went live last Friday, which may have been too late for our first timer friend in First Class, but it’s right on time for a traveling public increasingly paying attention to the availability of perks on planes. At its heart, Routehappy is a flight search and booking website built and powered by self-proclaimed #avgeeks. At its full potential, it’s an educational tool to make you the most informed traveler on the entire plane route.

We’ve become quite addicted ourselves—using it to easily view what airlines operate on what routes, and then even making decisions based on aircraft type (duh, 777-300ER over a 757-200!). Sites like Kayak will tell you the lowest price, and Hipmunk will even go so far as indicating whether or not to expect WiFi onboard, but none have done the research on legroom, seat type and more major details to accurately provide an idea of what you’ll experience in flight.

Now, let’s say you’re flying from San Francisco to Austin, TX in economy. A quick search ranks Virgin America tops, displaying the fact that their A320 has WiFi, 32″ legroom, seatback TV, power outlets at each seat and “excellent” reviews. JetBlue’s flights rank second despite 34″ legroom, because they’re missing the increasingly important WiFi. United falls third, as their flights lack WiFi and outlets, and legroom is a paltry 31″. Still, prices are displayed for final decision-making. The $273 of JetBlue looks pretty good next to the $440 of Virgin America on that particular date, but again…WiFi. Of course, if frequent flyer miles mean anything, then it’s also possible to narrow results by factors like airline alliance, specific airports, departure time, etc.

Taking it to the next level, say you’re about to drop $10,000 on a Business Class roundtrip from New York to SydneyDo some homework and view exactly what those five figures will get you. For example, Delta’s flights showed up as the highest rated on Routehappy. Clicking on them yield this information page:

We could go on, but you get the idea. We even used Routehappy over the weekend to decide between flights before calling up and booking one with miles—no need to always follow through on purchase; it’s perfectly awesome as an indispensable encyclopedia of flight route knowledge. Care to contribute to that knowledge? There’s also a user-generated edge to the site (and iPhone app, whereby anyone may sign up and review (and post photos!) of any flight, kind of like FlyerTalk but in far FAR more user-friendly, appealing way.

All in all, booking travel is moving in the direction of Routehappy—towards smart selection. The more travelers are empowered by information, the more pressure is put on the airlines to modernize and offer up amenities to stay at the top of the list. And lord knows that, one day, things we consider luxuries now will be the standard.

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