How To Plan A ‘Round The World’ Trip The Easy Way!

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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.

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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.

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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)

Qantas RTW Planning tol

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!

RTW Map

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!

Qantas FF CardsA 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.

These inspirational itineraries have themes such as, World Food, Connecting Cultures, and Luxury Lifestyle, the latter of which we were particularly fond of!

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.

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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.


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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.

Brisbane – Sydney – Santiago – New York – Helsinki – Paris – Hong Kong – Brisbane.

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.




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10 thoughts on “How To Plan A ‘Round The World’ Trip The Easy Way!

    1. Expert Traveller 2 Reply

      Thanks so much Sarah! It’s definitely worth considering if you’ve got a few stops that you’d like to make. Hope the European trip goes well. Let us know if you decide to do it as a RTW trip.

    1. Expert Traveller Reply

      Thanks so much! It’s a great goal to have, that’s for sure. We’ve travelled on round the world tickets a few times because they end up being much more affordable when you are going to several destinations. Let us know if you reach your RTW goal! We’d love to hear about your trip.

  1. Ruth Reply

    I have heard about this round the world fares and it is something I would like to do in the future. I really like the stops you chose for your trip. How long it took you to complete the trip (with stops, of course)? I live in Los Angeles so, it would be easy to connect to other points. #WeekendWanderlust

    1. Expert Traveller Reply

      Hi Ruth, thanks for your comment – it certainly is an awesome itinerary! Being based in LA is a great starting point for an around the world fare.

      You can really take as long or as short as you want with this type of fare, building the itinerary to suit the time you have. We have previously taken 6 weeks on one of these types of fares flying Brisbane – Fiji – Los Angeles – London – Bucharest – Hong Kong – Brisbane, which gave us about a week in each location. You can of course take a whole year if you have the time and want to include lots of land based, sea based, or internal flights on each continent. That’s what we are planning to do within the next two years – take a year on a RTW fare and include loads on internal travel on each continental group. You can open jaw RTW tickets, which is awesome as well, meaning you can fly in to one location and out of another on the same continent.

      For writing this post we did the trip in 11 days! We don’t recommend that unless that’s all the time you have. We did that so we could help people who are currently looking to plan a RTW trip by writing about all the stages of planning and execution from a very up-to-date perspective.

      Let us know if you end up taking a RTW trip, we’d love to hear about it.

  2. Kiyoko Reply

    Thanks for the great post! I’d heard of multi-city tickets, but never of “round the world” flights! Definitely sounds like a fantastic idea though! It’s probably a WAY cheaper than trying to book all of those flights individually. Will definitely have to keep this in mind the next time I decide I want to do more extensive travel than normal!

    1. Expert Traveller Reply

      Thanks so much for your comment. RTW fares are certainly way cheaper than booking one way individual flights between a number cities. It’s well worth considering ’round the world’ or ‘circle pacific’ fares for those kinds of trips. Let us know if you try it out!

    1. Expert Traveller Reply

      Thanks for your comment Elaine. We agree that your backpacking trip does sound really special. Have you written about it?

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