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When Flying Round Trip, Search Each One Way

This is a travel mistake I’m made twice, and almost made again today!

Example

I want to fly round trip from New Zealand to Cambodia

What Happens When I Search Round Trip

I select “round trip” in the options on the airline website I’m checking.

I search the dates I want to travel. I’m going to use random dates and Jetstar NZ for the example.

The prices I get are

Sunday Dec 2nd, 2012. Outbound leg. Christchurch > Phnom Penh. Price for this segment $1228.49 NZD

Wednesday Dec 12, 2012. Return leg. Phnom Penh > Christchurch. Price for this segment $949.04 NZD (Comprised of $839.69 fare and $55.35 tax)

What Happens When I Search Each One Way

The outbound leg stays the same.

However, the return leg Phnom Penh > Christchurch (for the exact same flights) prices as $741.83 USD comprised of $678.57 USD fare and $63.26 tax).

At today’s exchange rate, $741.83 USD is $910.78 NZD.

Saving = $38.36 NZD

Previous Discrepancies Have Been Bigger

The two previous times I have made this mistake were when booking Air Asia international fares. Those times the discrepancies were bigger because Air Asia were charging a surcharge based on where the passenger departed their first flight from. The surcharge got applied to both the outbound and return legs. The surcharge was much lower for ex-Malaysia passengers than ex-New Zealand passengers.

Notes:

– Calculations done 11/11/2012.

– Currency converted using Google. Consider that if you booked using a New Zealand credit card, the rate may not be as good and you need to consider currency conversion charges.

– Consider that if you use this strategy and needed to change both legs of your flight, you might need to pay 2 x change fee (some airlines allow you to change multiple segments in a single booking for only one change fee, others do not).

Tips-for-flying-round-trip

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