Hi Fransor, Im going on a RTW ticket at the end of this year and i have done a fair bit of research, the are three main tickets and this is basically down to airline alliances. The is the One World ticket and this is made up of British airways, Quantas, Lan Chille,United Airlines and a few others that i can not recall at the moment and the one world ticket is priced by high and low season and by continents.
Basically the One world ticket gives you upto 20 flights and has 4 internal flights per continent except for North America were you get 6 flights. the more continents the higher the price.Were ever you start you have to include that as a continent and so were ever you go you are using a continent straightaway.
The next ticket is the Star Alliance and the alliance is made up of Air Canada, Air New Zealand, All Nippon Airways, Asiana, Austrian Airlines, British Midland, LOT Polish, Lufthansa, SAS Scandanavian, Singapore Airlines, South African Airways, SpanAir, Swiss International, TAP Air Portugal, Thai AIR,i think the are more airlines and the ticket is mileage based and the are options and the basic ticket is 29,000 miles and you can change this upto to 39,000 but the cost goes up.
The is the escapades ticket and is made up by the following airlines Virgin Atlantic Airways, Singapore Airlines, Air New Zealand, Silkair, this ticket is better if your going via Australasia and the is a basic 29,000 ticket which is the same price all year round.
The key to an RTW is you can not back track, you can change times for a small fee, if you reroute it can get really expensive and as brigette says your limited to 12 months.
The price is basically set by the alliance and then of course taxes on top, so its a case of shopping around to see which agency is willing to give the best deal, as the tickets and taxes are the same everywhere and it is down to how much profit the agency is trying to make.
Another consideration is helpful are the agency.............one agency may quote slightly less but may not have the technical staff that can advise you on what visas you need and what routing is best.Afterall some agencys have been there for years cause they know what they are doing.
Routing can also effect the price, for example an RTW ticket out of london or sydney is cheaper than from going from the states or canada, dont know why, but it means if youre in the states you pay more...........which sucks.
thats a brief overview really, but if i can help anymore Fran, just give me a holla and good luck