Many people dream of travelling on a ‘Round the World’ itinerary, and I’m sure it is probably high up on your own wish list of dream holiday experiences. There are many different Round the World flight options and it can be hard to decide on which is best for you and your trip.
The first place many travellers look is on the internet and at the major airline alliances and the Round the World offers they have. Let’s look at those first.
I have Oneworld Emerald Status so looking at what Qantas had to offer was my first stop. Round the World fares are always calculated by the lead airline you choose to fly with, and what your departure airport is.
The Oneworld Explorer fare is very good value. It allows you to visit up to 15 destinations around the world. You must travel in a continuous direction, east or west, and you can choose to visit between four and six continental regions.
The continental regions for the Explore fare are:
- Europe and the Middle East (includes Algeria, Egypt, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Libya, Morocco, Russia both east and west of the Urals, Sudan, Tajikistan, Tunisia, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan)
- Africa (excludes Algeria, Egypt, Morocco, Sudan, Tunisia and Libya)
- Asia (includes the Indian subcontinent)
- South West Pacific (includes Australia and New Zealand)
- North America (includes Canada, the United States, the Caribbean, Mexico, Central America, and Panama)
- South America (includes the Falkland Islands)
This Explorer fare gives you complete freedom to travel on any Oneworld airline, providing you with excellent routing options and a wide variety of destinations to choose from.
A sample itinerary for the Explorer fare could be Sydney to Los Angeles via Perth, Singapore, Bangkok and London . With six continents you can plan an epic Round the World itinerary including stops in South America, Africa, North America, the Caribbean, Europe and Asia. Not much of a downside there!
The added benefit of this Explorer Fare is that you can open jaw some flights, meaning you can fly into Helsinki , for example, and then travel overland across Europe before continuing your flights from say Madrid . This flexibility would definitely appeal to travellers planning a longer Round the World adventure. It certainly appealed to me!
Qantas Business Class Round the World fares start from AUD$10,394, but go up from that depending on route and availability. The Oneworld website has a nifty travel planner which allows you to pick dates and flights, and will allow you to price your ticket and even book online.
This is great for planning but takes time and effort to get the cities and dates you want. So make sure you set aside plenty of time to work through this planning phase to get the prefect Round the World route for you if you choose to book this way!
A great use of frequent flyer points is to use them to book RTW fares. Qantas offers Business Class Round the World tickets for 280,000 frequent flyer points, and First Class Round the World tickets for 420,000 points.
Do note though that booking Round the World fares with points will require planning at least a year ahead. You will also need patience as you try to find availability for the dates and cities you want. It is however an excellent way to use points or miles.
Taxes will still apply and should be taken into consideration if you’re thinking of going down the Round the World fare on points route.
Star Alliance also has Round the Wold tickets but their Round the World fares are based on the distance you travel. You can zigzag across continents having up to 16 flight segments. However, you can only cross the Atlantic and the Pacific once each.
Star Alliance provide their Reserve and Fly online booking tool for travellers to use in the planning phase of their Round the World itinerary. They also offer a number of creative itineraries designed to get you totally inspired about your Round the World trip.
Naturally, you can plan your own independent Round the World adventure as well and go where you’ve always dreamed of going. Fares start from AUD$9772 for Business Class tickets.
In Australia we are lucky to have access to an excellent Round the World specialist – Roundabout Travel. They always have a wide range of very competitive Round the World fares available and a team who specialise in getting you the route and dates you want.
Roundabout Travel can take all the hard work out of planning and booking your Round the World flights. They are based in Adelaide but you can easily deal with them online or over the phone.
Currently they have Business Class Round the World fares with –
- Swiss Airlines from AUD$6197
- Virgin Atlantic from $6681
- Finnair from $7552
- Cathay Pacific from $8496.
Some of these Round the World discounted tickets do have restrictions, but the benefit of working with a specialist agency is that you get the best ticket for the trip you really want.
For my 11 day Round the World trip, I used Roundabout Travel who recommended the Finnair pass as the best fit for my itinerary. I was able to book an ideal route for me, taking in several of my bucket list cities.
The Finnair ticket allowed me to fly Qantas, LATAM and Cathay Pacific as well as Finnair routes.
Expert Traveller Recommends…
Planning a ‘Round The World’ trip is certainly one of life’s great travel planning adventures. The excitement of choosing where you will go and how many exciting destinations you can squeeze into your time away is simply a thrill.
Whether it be six months flying Business Class around the world, visiting all your bucket list locations, or a shorter business trip, booking RTW certainly makes good sense.
Choosing a specialist agency also takes all the hard work out of planning the big trip and will save you both time and money.