Q: My wife and I are planning a six week trip to Asia, and possibly New Zealand.

Instead of booking in advance in the normal way, we are considering the possibility of booking to, say, Dubai, and, once there, find out what flights are available to, for instance, Singapore, and, if the price is right, go there. If not, we will consider other possibilities – like Bangkok, or Manila… It might be worth a try. What do you think?

Sven Andren, Bergerac, France

A: Wherever you are starting from, you should at least sketch out your itinerary in advance and look at options for achieving it. If you are planning to travel at least halfway around the world, your best bet may be a round-the-world ticket with one of the three major airline alliances at Staralliance.com; Oneworld.com; or Skyteam.com.

RTW tickets allow a degree of flexibility; you must travel in a continuous direction, with no back-tracking, and book your first leg; thereafter, you can usually change flights, and even the routing, for a small fee. There are scores of itineraries, routings and airline combinations. Prices vary widely, depending where you start the round-the-world journey. As I have often reported, Bangkok is a good place to buy tickets; but you would need to buy a one-way ticket to get there (or a round-trip ticket, and use the return coupon from Paris to Bangkok some other time).

Both Oneworld and Star Alliance sell ‘Circle Pacific’ and ‘Circle Asia’ fares, along with a range of regional, and country, air passes, offering great value and flexibility for impulse travel along the way.


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