Published: September 14th 2007
September 14th 2007
Dancing on the water....
We will be looking for many sunrises on the way...
Would you like to purchase an “Around the World Airline Ticket?
When I was doing research before purchasing our tickets I talked with United, Northwest and Continental Airlines. In addition, I spoke to a couple of airline consolidators.
What I learned about consolidators is that you can buy your tickets with them and save a good bit of money but you don’t have any flexibility and changes are very difficult. We were looking for tickets that would give us some flexibility if we wanted to make changes. One of them was offering a charter trip. You had to go where they were going and when they were going.
We ended up going with Northwest Airlines because they offered us what we needed and their Around the World Travel staff was so nice and they made valuable suggestions. I would highly recommend the staff at Northwest Airlines.
Northwest Airline Rules:
1. You can travel on Northwest Airlines and any of their Skyteam partners.
2. You can choice to fly east to west or west to east. They have the world broken down into three zones. Zone one is U.S., Canada, Central and South America. Zone two is Europe,
South Africa and the Middle East. Zone three is everything else….Asia, China, India, Japan. You can fly back and forth within the zone but you must fly one way after you leave the zone.
3. You must make a minimum of three stops and no more than 10 stops.
4. You can fly 30,000 miles for $3990, 35,000 miles for about $4220 and 40,000 miles from $5408.
5. Change fees are $100.
6. Travel must be completed within a one year period.
7. Cancellation penalty: they have two different plans and my notes are good because I wasn’t planning on canceling the trip. One had a $150 fee and one of them had a 10% fee but I don’t remember the guidelines.
At first I was in sticker shock about the prices but then I remembered that we paid about $1500 for our tickets to Fiji and on this trip we are going many places. Again, you can always go with a consolidator and find cheaper tickets. Flexibility was important to us.
When you book your tickets they will want the cities that you are flying to along with the dates. Remember that you need to fly over both oceans.
We are going to Singapore, Brunei, Kuala Lumpur, Myanmar, Thailand, Cambodia, Laos, Vietnam, Bali, New Zealand, Australia, Papua New Guinea, Dubai, London, Amsterdam, Boston, and back to Seattle. As you can see I have listed more than 10 stops. After we get to Asia, we will have to purchase separate tickets to Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia in addition to Papua New Guinea.
We will see how it goes. I am certain we will learn things along the way that will allow us to improve the process for our next around-the-world trip.
If you have any friends or acquaintances in the countries that we will visit we would love to contact them and at least have coffee with a local. Please send us their e-mail address or give them ours.
Recommended Reading before an around the world trip:
Gap Years for Grown Ups by Susan Griffith
Vagabonding by Rolf Potts
The Practical Nomad: How to travel around the world by Edward Hasbrouck
The World’s Cheapest Destinations by Tim Leffel
First- Time Around the World - A Rough Guide Special
The World Awaits: How to Travel Far and Well by Paul Otteson
1,000 Places To See Before You Die by Patricia Schults
All of the Lonely Planet Guide books
The Miracle of Mindfulness by Thich Nhat Hanh