As a backpacker, you are engulfed with travel advice on a daily basis. And when it comes to booking airfare, round the world flights are, quite possibly, the most recommended by those on a gap-year and other long-term travelers. What many don’t stress is that they are right for some, but not all backpackers. This article will help you examine your travel plans and decide whether round the world flights are right for your trip or not.
How many countries/cities do you wish to visit?
The most important factor to decide whether round the world flights are right for you is the number of countries or cities you plan to visit on your trip. It might be wise, and money-saving, to overland part of your journey. Do you only wish to visit Thailand, Cambodia, and Laos? Might be better to fly into Bangkok and go overland to Cambodia and Laos. Want to add Delhi to the equation? Time to look for some round the world flights!
How long will you be on the road?
This factor must be taken into consideration alongside your country/city list. If you only have a few weeks to travel, an around the world ticket might make sense. They allow you to see a lot in a limited time span. On the other hand, if you plan to be on the road for more than 2 months, booking a one-way flight will save you money, as you have the time and flexibility to explore destinations at your own pace, plus be on the lookout for better deals on your flight for your next destination via budget airlines and/or flash sales.
Where are you flying from?
Your home airport and country of your trip’s origin are two important factors when it comes to round the world flights. If you live in a busy hub, say Frankfurt or NYC, it might be cheaper to string one-way flights together. Indeed, how much money you save, or spend, will depend on your route. Do your dully diligence, compare one-way tickets vs round the world flights and decide which is your best bet based on city of origin.
How flexible are you?
Are you a planner or would you rather wing it in most situations? Round the world flights not only work best for those who want a shorter trip and plan to visit big cities, but also to those who have a set itinerary. Why? Round the world tickets offer little flexibility. For instance, they don’t allow you to backtrack (most travel on one direction–eastward or westward).
I still don’t know! Any additional advice?
If you are still unsure, take a look at this bullet list of facts about round the world flights. After reading it, you should have enough information to make an informed decision.
- The more stops on a round the world flight, the more expensive it’ll be.
- A cheaper ticket equals a popular route. Thus, if you wish to travel off-the-beaten path, be prepared to shell out some cash for that RTW ticket.
- Consolidators or “bucket shops” are worth looking into for budget packages in otherwise expensive destinations. What they do is string together one-way tickets, so if you are quite the planner and have time to research, you could be doing this yourself.
- More sacrifices will have to me made, in terms of truly experiencing a culture or skipping a charming small town or two, when it comes to round the world flights. But if your goal is to see as many landmarks as possible across the world in a crunch, a round the world flight is for you.
Have you embarked on a trip with RTW flights?
What was your strategy?
This article has been sponsored by Escape Travel. Top photo: Joel Down, Flickr