See if Alaska or Southwest Airlines has anything. Your frined who paid $ 100 probably did not fly in December because December is usually an expensive month to travel. Flying anytime during the holidays is generally more expensive.Another option since you live in CA is to see if you are willing to drive to LA. Sometimes you may be able to find a good deal on flights out of LAX since there are lots of flights and more competition. You can also see how much flights are out of Orange County and Long Beach as well.