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New York Magazine, The Cut

...the bigger perk is flexibility: say you have ten people committed to flying to Paris, and a few people who are still on the fence: Just book 15 tickets. You’ll put down a deposit, and the airline will give you a utilization date, which could be two or three months from the departure date. Now you can wait on your indecisive friends and continue recruiting people, and if you don’t fill the 15 spots before the utilization date, you can just hand the unused tickets back. So long as you’re using an airline with good group policies — Delta, United, and Southwest are my favorites for this — you’ll get your money back. Stay organized and there’s really no risk,” says Aaron Sanfield, founder of easygroupairfare.com.