I'm going on holiday to vietnam and Laos in september.. going to work my way from Hanoi to Luang Prabang and then hopefully fly back to Hanoi. The prices on the internet for a one way flight seem a bit expensive ($200 each) - will i be better waiting untill i'm there..?
Any advice would be great..
Yup. Definitely wait until you get there. I went to the Vietnam Airlines office in Luang Prabang (it's easy to find, just ask around) a week before I wanted to leave and got a 90 $ flight from Vientienne to Hanoi. Contacting the airline directly is a lot cheaper than buying the flight at a travel agent as they charge you commission. Lao Airlines is also flying the route, but I haven't heard great reports of them.
I also booked in Luang Prabang a few days before I was due to fly and paid $120. (This was from Vientiane to Hanoi.) Don't forget to reconfirm your flight a couple of days beforehand - we weren't told this and when we got to the airport at Vientiane, Vietnam airlines told us we were only on stand by as we had not reconfirmed our flight. we were allowed on the flight at the last minute.
Lao airlines have a bad reputation and didn't seem much cheaper anyway.
Hi - the price fluctuates around $220 return so anything $90-$120 is reasonable. Air Vietnam and Lao Airlines use a seat share arrangement, so its exactly the same plane and ticket price for either usually. Also there are a few different ticket options (if you want to change date with no fee etc) that the agent might not tell you about - so best to ask for price options rather than accept the first quote.
I stay in lao and don't know why people still think Lao Airlines still has a bad reputation - they had a couple of crashes 10 yrs ago or so but have changed their planes and maintenance contracts since then. Not a drunk russian mechanic in sight..
Thanks guys - i'm planning to arrive in Luang Prabang about 5 days before i want to fly out so i'll leave it till i get there to book the flights - fingers crossed!