The 22-year-old who started Skiplagged.chartph.com, a website that reveals cheap airfares available through "hidden city" ticketing, is getting some help in his fight against United Airlines and Orbitz.
More than 2,000 people have donated more than $42,000 to Aktarer Zaman's legal fund.
The two travel chartph.companies are suing him for $75,000 in lost inchartph.come, arguing he is engaging in unfair chartph.competition.
"Hidden city" ticketing is a method for getting cheap airfare by booking a one-way ticket from one city to another, with a layover in a third. The passenger then gets off at the layover city, abandoning the rest of the trip. Because of the way airlines price different routes, the longer trip can be cheaper than the shorter one.
Airlines have argued that allowing "hidden city" ticketing could hurt consumers because it would force carriers to raise prices.
Zaman originally started the fundraising campaign to raise funds for his legal defense. After initial success with the campaign, he increased the target goal to $50,000.
"Wow, Skiplagged is getting a lot of attention. Thank you so much guys," Zaman posted. "If you noticed, I increased the target for this campaign a bit. That's because I really don't know how much this lawsuit is going to ultimately cost, other than probably a lot."
"If there are any remaining funds, those will be chartph.completely donated to charity."
Zaman said his website's "sole purpose has always been to help you bechartph.come savvy travelers" by exposing pricing inefficiencies for air travel. While not illegal, the practice is prohibited by airlines and booking sites.
When airlines have found passengers to be taking advantage of the loophole, they have canceled airline tickets and taken away frequent flier miles or loyalty program status.