Do you want to go on a world tour, but worrying about the airfare? Are you looking for the best value for traveling around the world? Travel around the world without breaking the bank – it’s possible! Well, simply buy a Round The World Ticket. With RTW, you can see more of the world, even more than what you expect. It enables travelers to fly around the world for a relatively low price.
When it comes to traveling around the world, people have two options- buy flights as you go or buy flights all in advance that cover all the destinations you want. While buying flights as you go sounds convenient, getting one ticket for all destinations not only eliminates all hassles but also reduces overall airfare.
All you have to do is to plan your route and book a RTW ticket. Planning a complex trip across multiple continents can be overwhelming, but round the world tickets offer a hassle-free option. They are especially recommended for inexperienced travelers who may not feel confident in spontaneously planning their trip.
And to top it off, purchasing something in bulk can save you a lot of money too. However, you should know that it comes with many terms and conditions, which may not be suitable for you.
To help you out, here is our complete guide to Round The World Ticket. Here, we will cover everything that you would like to know before buying a round the world plane ticket.
About Round the World Ticket
RTW gives you unprecedented access to more than 1,300 destinations across 190 countries worldwide. In the past, it was generally offered through marketing agreements between airlines on several continents. But now, to reduce the complexities, the ticket is universally offered by three major airline alliances- OneWorld, SkyTeam, and Star Alliance. It is also offered by specialized travel agencies, capable of customizing a world tour trip for the traveler.
How Do Round The World Tickets Work?
Travelers, who want to book RTW, can book with one of the airline alliances. An airline alliance is a collaborative venture where partner airlines share their resources, including plane seats, passengers, and exclusive perks for elite members. By purchasing a ticket from one airline, you gain access to multiple partner airlines within the alliance at a single price, allowing you to explore the globe using just one ticket.
For example, if you purchase a ticket from American Airlines- an Oneworld Airline Alliance member, you can use their partners within the alliance. Since American Airlines doesn’t cover all destinations around the world, you will need to rely on their partners.
RTW tickets offer the option to choose between economy, business, and first-class seats. Additionally, these tickets come with a set of terms and conditions. Typically, RTW tickets are valid for one year starting from the initial date of travel and necessitate returning to the country of origin. While it is not obligatory to return to the same city, it is required to conclude the journey in the same country.
Moreover, each alliance has their own sets of rules for Round the World tickets. Here is a breakdown of all three airline alliances’ rules.
Star Alliance is the world’s largest airline alliance. It comprises 26 airlines and operates a fleet of 5,033 aircraft that serves more than 1,290 airports in 195 countries. Moreover, it manages a daily departure of 19,000 aircraft.
If you purchase a Star Alliance Round The World ticket from a Star Alliance member, you must end the journey in the same country you started with and must go one direction- east or west. You will cross both the Atlantic and Pacific oceans once. Additionally, a total of 16 flights will cover your entire journey of 39,000 miles. It also offers free rebooking, in case you need to make any changes while on the way. However, the rule may differ or there will be a different condition, depending on various factors.
Whether you want to create your personalized itinerary or wish to take a hint from the thematic suggestions based on history, romantic getaways, wonders of the world, food, wine, fashion, and more, Star Alliance will guide you with ideas and inspirations.
One of the best benefits of RTW with Star Alliance is it offers 5 surface sections in your itinerary. Which means, if there is an alternate option, cheaper than the flight, you can take it. For example, if your itinerary includes a trip from London to Paris, and a train journey on this route is more economical than a flight ticket, you are allowed to take the train to cover the distance. Although it would be a part of the 39,000 miles journey, it allows you to save money.
The duration of stay is between 10 days to 365 days and there will be two to 15 stops. The rebooking fees are case specific. However, in most cases, you can rebook free of cost.
How To Book Round the World ticket with Star Alliance?
Step 1: Select Cities
Enter your origin city and the first arriving destination. Now add more destinations you want to cover by entering the city’s name or select the city on the map.
Step 2: Flight Selection
At this stage, the system will automatically select the flights that operate in the selected destinations. You can also select the flights that suit your needs the best.
Step 3: Enter Your Details
Enter the required details, such as your name, contact information, and documents to secure your booking.
Step 4: Make The Payment
Enter your payment details and make the payment by choosing one of the payment getaways provided by the system.
Oneworld, a 13 member airline alliance, was started as the first choice for the world’s frequent travelers. Its member airlines collectively operate a fleet of 3,296 aircraft that serve about 1,000 airports in 175 countries, with 13,000 daily departures. It is the third-largest global airline alliance.
Just like Star Alliance, Oneworld also offers RTW to travelers. However, it offers two different kinds of RTW tickets- a Oneworld Explorer, Global Explorer, and a Oneworld Circle Pacific. Oneworld Explorer is a segment-based itinerary that focuses on continents. It comes with three options, which means you can choose from three, four or six continents. The airfare varies depending on the number of continents you choose.
The continent-based ticket doesn’t have a maximum mileage limit and can be included in up to 16 segments. Every segment is counted the same, so if it is a long haul-flight, you can cover a lot of grounds.
Its Global Explorer is a mileage-based pass that offers four options- 26,000 29,000, 34,000, and 39,000. The more mileage you want to add the more the price of the ticket will be.
The third and the last option is Circle Pacific, which is similar to Star Alliance’s Pacific trip. This inter-continental journey covers continents that border the Pacific Ocean.
Although Oneworld has fewer access to destinations than Star Alliance, it covers almost all major cities.
Before you book a Round the World airfare ticket, you should know its rules. You must travel to one direction- east or west and backtracking may be allowed depending on situations.
How To Book Oneworld Round The World ticket?
Step 1: Build Your Itinerary
Enter the number of passengers traveling on the same itinerary, select the cabin class and preferred airlines. After that, add origin airport and the first arriving city and date. Now add each segment, which can go up to 16.
Step 2: Enter Your Details
Once you add your required destinations, enter all your details and add documents to secure your bookings.
Step 3: Make The Payment
Choose one of the payment getaways given in the system and make the payment online. You will receive a confirmation mail or SMS regarding your booking.
Skyteam is the third global airlines alliance that consists of 19 airlines from five continents and is the second-largest alliance in the world. It flies to more than 1,150 destinations in more than 175 countries and operates more than 14,500 daily flights.
Unlike Star Alliance and Oneworld, Skyteam no longer offers Round the world tickets. And even when it used to sell RTW fare, it was limited to only a few options.
How Much Does It Cost
The cost varies depending on the type of class you choose, number of continents or cities and other factors. Most economy class Round the World ticket price range between $25,00 – $10,000, depending on the mileage, route, number of stops, fare type. The RTW bookings can be changed by dates and times with no extra cost, as long as you don’t change destinations. Sometimes the destination change may not be allowed and if it allows, you need to pay a change fine of $125.
Where To Get Best Deal on Round The World Fare
Where can you buy a cheaper RTW ticket? You can buy directly from websites of one of the airline alliances or member airlines. However, booking from a third-party ensures you a great deal. They mix and match from one airline to another to find the lowest price. Before you book, check all the options available and compare the airfare.
Which Alliance Is The Best
While both Star Alliance and Oneworld have their own sets of perks, it is best to know what exactly you are looking forward to on your around the world journey. Oneworld Explorer is ideal as it doesn’t have any mileage limit. Moreover, if you want to save money while on the road, you may want to switch to trains instead of a flight. And for that Oneworld Explorer is the best choice.
When Should You or Shouldn’t Buy RTW Ticket
Before you purchase a Round the World ticket, there are a few things you need to consider.
Buy a RTW ticket, if
- You can stick to the schedule
- You don’t intend to change the date / time / destination
- You are traveling with a large group or family
- You want to enjoy the perks of being a Frequent Flyer member
Don’t buy a RTW ticket, if
- You want to fly on a low-cost airline
- You will be on the world for more than a year
- You will be covering more cities than RTW ticket offers
- You will be in a city for several days
While booking RTW ensures at least 15-25% off the price, you should recheck the fare on low-budget airlines or by checking fare on multi-city bookings.
What Is Better- Round The World or Multi-City Ticket
Both have their own sets of benefits. However, choosing one depends on various factors, including your itinerary. If you are going for more than a year, it is best to select a multi-city ticket. RTW tickets are valid for one year and if your trip is not going to be longer than a year, RTW tickets are inexpensive.
Also, if you are a part of a Frequent Flyer program or have miles or reward points, book a RTW ticket to redeem offers. While multi-city tickets are better for a flexible journey.
Globetrotting can be a fancy and expensive affair, especially when you are going to be crossing continents for several months. But with a Round the World ticket, you don’t have to worry about the pricey tickets. It is comparatively cheaper and convenient. It lets you create a custom trip.