¨Travel makes you modest. You see what a tiny place you occupy in the world¨.
Buying Round the World Tickets
Fifty-Plus Nomads may want to consider buying Round the World (RTW) tickets anytime they plan to make a journey with multiple stops within one region or around the world.
All RTW tickets make you pre-book all your tickets in advance. However, since you are purchasing them in one giant bulk package, you may save money off the total price of all individual tickets. (Particularly if you do not want to fly budget airlines).
RTW Ticket Agencies
Most importantly, RTW travel agencies have a lot of experience with this type of ticket. Fifty-Plus Nomad can use this expertise to save considerable frustration and possibly money.
Types of Round the World Tickets
There are generally two types of Round the World tickets. One type is geared toward flying exclusively on one of the three airline alliances. (Each airline alliance has its own rules for how round the world tickets work). The other type of Round the World (RTW) ticket comes for RTW travel agencies that use airlines from more than one airline alliance.
Round the world tickets that use one alliance require you to plan an itinerary that:
- begins and ends in the same country,
- will be completed within a year after the start of the trip,
- does not crisscross an ocean. (Meaning you cannot travel from New York-London-Rio de Janeiro-Paris).
- have a minimum of three stops and a maximum of fifteen.
The alliance ticket prices are based on the number of miles you fly the minimum amount of miles for one of these tickets is 29000 miles) and allow a set number of stopovers. (The minimum amount of miles for one of these tickets is 29000 miles).
Travelers can change the dates and the times on their tickets so long as they don’t change the destination. Airlines often sell these tickets directly.
Round the World Tickets from Travel Agencies
However, it is usually cheaper and better to use a Round the World travel agency.
RTW travel agencies are just travel agencies specializing in helping travelers plan a ticket with multiple stops worldwide. You can buy any ticket from these agencies.
Instead of creating Round the World tickets using the same alliance, the RTW agencies usually piece together individual airline tickets based on the lowest available fares they find. (Note: These agencies usually do not deal with budget carriers).
The RTW travel agency will help you find the type of ticket that works best for you. Depending on your routing, the RTW agency may create a routing that involves more than one alliance and is not subject to the same rules as the alliance tickets above.
The largest and best-known, round-the-world travel agency is Airtreks. I used them in 2013 to buy the following round-the-world tickets:
- Montreal-Chennai (India)- (overland to Mumbai);
The ticket cost -US $2200- was around $200 less than buying the tickets individually, and I found them very helpful with planning the flights. They also helped me when I needed to make a slight change to a flight. (Note: I may have saved money by these tickets myself using budget airlines).
Note: The Airtreks’ website is beneficial because it:
- Allows you play with different itineraries to see how changes affect the price.
- Suggests destinations where you may be able to stop for free because it is a hub for one of your flights.
Tips for Getting the Best RTW Tickets
Generally, you will get the best prices if you:
- Travel in one direction.
- Don’t backtrack.
- Have a reasonably small number of stops.
- Occasionally travel overland.
- Travel to large cities which serve as an airline hub.
Some Additional Air-Travel Related Posts
- Why Alliances are Essential to Travel Providers. Are they Good or Bad for Consumers?Travel industry alliances are essential to the business´s survival. However, alliances have both good and bad implications for consumers
- Extra Fees: What are Ancillary (Extra) Fees and Why Are They Increasingly Becoming A Travel Industry Lifeline?More and more the travel industry depends on the sale of other products to expand and maintain its profitability. Expect to be bombarded with hints to buy other things (ancillaries) on your next cruise, flight, etc.
- The Internet Has Changed the Face of the Travel Industry More than Any Other Major IndustryThe internet has changed the travel industry probably more than another industry. This article discusses how these changes affect the consumer.
- Travel Industry Cost Saving Techniques: The Good, the Bad, and the UglyThe travel industry has made several changes to save costs in recent times. Some like using more fuel-efficient planes do not affect consumers that much. Others like reducing staff have made the experience worse for consumers.
- Business Travelers Versus Leisure TravelersThe travel industry gets most of its clients from leisure travelers. However, it makes more money from business than leisure passengers. The airlines put up with us leisure travelers because they couldn’t survive without us. However, they don’t hide their preference for business travelers.
- Why Are There So Many Connecting Flights? A Discussion of Why Airlines Love the Hub-Spoke Model More than ConsumersUnbeknownst to most consumers, the cause of most of our airline-related complaints is the hub-spoke model. Unfortunately, however, the hub-spoke model is also essential to the airline industry’s financial viability.
- Airline Schedule Changes: Why Don’t Airlines Keep their Promises?Learn why airlines change their schedules after you buy your tickets and what you can do about it.
- How Many Taxes, Fees, and Other Charges Do Consumers Pay For Airfare, Hotels, and Other Travel Services?The amount and number of travel taxes, fees, and other charges added to your bill will probably surprise you. Many are hidden and like everything else, taxes keep going up.
- Airline Consolidation: What Are the Disadvantages and Advantages For the Consumer?The airlines have consolidated so fast in the USA and Canada that only 5 players dominate the market. Learn what this means for consumers.
- The 3 Reasons Travel Prices Are So Radically Different than Other Products: Perishability, Capital Costs, and Yield ManagementHave you ever wondered why travel products seem to be priced so crazily? Learn the three economic factors that contribute to the pricing of travel products: perishability, high capital costs, and yield management.
- Why Pack Light Advice Doesn’t Work for Me (and May Not Work for You Either)I have had more problems because I packed too light than too much. Packing light advice is mainly geared toward people who are going on a whirlwind trip through Europe independently. I usually travel for long periods and stay in only a few places often with great climate variations. I also hate washing my own clothes.
- Some Hard-Learned Packing Tips From My 5 Years Traveling Round the WorldWhile I do not always follow packing light tips, there are many other tips that I use all the time. This post outlines the tips that were most useful during my 5 years traveling around the world.
- 3 Simple Baggage Tips to Avoid Wasting Time, Money, and TroubleA series of simple steps to avoid problems with your bags such as making your bag stick out from the others on the carousel and finding the most durable bag.
- Get an Upgrade to Avoid Uncomfortable Air TravelI have frequently managed to score business class seats either as an upgrade or for a modest additional fee. Learn how I did it and how you may be able to follow in my footsteps.
- Airline Bumping: What is it REALLY All About? Why It is Often a Blessing?Airlines routinely sell more tickets on a plane than there are seats. They expect no-shows. Most of the time this causes no problems. If there is trouble, often they can find volunteers who will receive some compensation to take a later flight. Once in a rare while, airlines have to involuntarily bump someone. This explains your rights if this happens to you and why I am glad I have volunteered to be bumped a couple of times.
- Round the World Tickets 101: Are They Worth the Trouble or Not?Once in my life, I bought a round the world ticket. My experience was favorable but I think the number of times these tickets are useful for most travelers is fairly limited for the reasons outlined in this post.
- Flight Schedule Changes: Simple Tips to Keep Flight Changes from Destroying Your TripIn the last ten years, I have spent nearly half of my life traveling around the world. One of the few unexpected changes is the sheer number of times airlines have changed my itinerary significantly. Sometimes it has worked out to my advantage. Other times, not. This post tells you what you can do if this happens to you.
- Why Buying the Cheapest Airfare is Often a Big MistakeI am surprised how often I can get significant improvements in convenience and comfort when I don’t buy the cheapest ticket. Often, for example, I can fly in business class from the US to Cancun for only $20-40 above the cost of the cheapest ticket. Often for a few dollars, I can get much more convenient flights as well.
- Top Tip: Eliminate International Flight Connections StressProbably the worst type of flights involve having to make a connection in a foreign country. Here are some tips to make these connections as stress-free as possible.
- Are Budget and Traditional Airlines Really that Different? Why Occasionally You Should Avoid Budget AirlinesOften nowadays there doesn’t seem to be that much difference between budget and traditional airlines (legacy carriers). However, unless the difference in ticket prices between budget and traditional airline is above 15%, I would recommend choosing traditional airlines for the reasons outlined in this post.
- Finding the Cheapest Flights 101: A Simple GuideA synopsis of my experiences with finding the cheapest flights and using search engines. The article also covers many tips for finding the cheapest flights, some of which are not discussed that widely elsewhere.
- Airfare Bundle Tickets: Advantages and DisadvantagesI often buy tickets with a mid-price range of bundled services attached. I often think the few extra dollars are worth it. You may or may not choose to follow in my footsteps after reading this post.
- Travel Hacking: How to Exploit Frequent Flyer and Loyalty Programs for Your Own BenefitHere are dozens of tips to hack your way toward low-cost flights and hotel rooms using frequent flyer and other travel loyalty programs.
- Frequent Flyer Miles: A Lazy Man’s GuideThis is a synopsis of my use of frequent flyer miles during my round the world travels from 2011 to 2015. It should help you to see how the programs have changed in the 2010s and give you some ideas how you can design a frequent flyer strategy that works for you.
- Airport 101: Avoid Immigration, Customs, Airline Check-In, and Security ProblemsWithout a doubt, one of the most frustrating parts of living as a fifty-plus nomad is dealing with airports. In my five years traveling around the world, I encountered several issues I did not anticipate including finding the right terminal, not having proof of onward passage, and unexpected fees. This post helps you avoid some of my mistakes.
- Frequent Flyer Miles: How to Master the Art of Redeeming MilesOnce you earn frequent flyer miles, you then have to figure out how to redeem them efficiently, Here are some tips from my own experience and that of experts.
- Earning Frequent Flyer and Other Travel Loyalty Points Without Leaving HomeI used frequent flyer points to pay for 40% of all my flights during my five-year trip around the world. It was easier to do in 2011-2015 when I traveled; however, it is still a good way to help pay for your travels. Here s a guide to how you can earn miles without traveling by using credit cards and buying affiliated products.
- Getting to the Airport Trouble-Free: 6 Simple TipsGetting to and from the airport and airport parking will be easier if you follow the six simple tips in this post.