10 ways to save on your flight
Alex McWhirter reveals ways to cut the cost of your ticket
1 BOOK TICKETS TO USA IN GULF If you travel regularly to both the Gulf and North America in first or business class, then purchase a single London-Dubai ticket in the UK. Then book the Dubai-North America-Dubai sector (DXBLHR-JFK-LHR-DXB, for example) when you are in the Gulf. A ticket from Dubai to New York – even with a London stopover in both directions – can cost the same or less than London-New York return. 2 FLY VIA DUBLIN Use Dublin as a springboard from the UK to the US when flying business class. In recent years, Aer Lingus has extended its network and the carrier provides many connections from London and the regions. 3 BUY RTW TICKETS Should you need to combine visits to both North America and Australasia, buy a round-the-world ticket, which can save you money on first and business class. 4 USE FIFTH-FREEDOM CARRIERS These airlines undercut established carriers to compensate for their lack of market identity. Examples are Manchester-Houston with Singapore Airlines, Milan-New York on Emirates, London-Los Angeles with Air New Zealand, and London-Bangkok on EVA Air. You might find it easier to book such flights through a travel agent rather than direct. 5 FLY GULF AIRLINES INDIRECT Look at major Gulf airlines when flying Europe to Africa, Asia or Australasia. The best prices are for premium classes, although bear in mind that the overall flight time will exceed that of a direct service. This especially applies in the case of Europe-Africa, where routing via the Gulf does take longer. 6 EXTEND YOUR TRIP If you need to visit Singapore, it costs little more to fly on to Hong Kong, Jakarta or cities in Australasia. If you are Hong Kong-bound, the cost of tagging on Manila, Taipei or Tokyo can be minimal. 7 CHOOSE NORWEGIAN’S B787 Premium seats on the low-cost carrier’s B787 provide adequate space and comfort at a bargain price. The Dreamliners only operate long-distance. Fly transatlantic from London, or, from this month, to Singapore, and Buenos Aires in early 2018. 8 GO BUDGET FROM THE REGIONS Direct flights to mainland Europe from points other than London have been transformed by budget airlines. Unless you have a meeting in the capital or need to travel to a lesser-known city, there is now little reason to fly via London. 9 PLAY THE CURRENCY GAME If you are in a strong currency country and regularly visit the UK, look at taking advantage. Buy a one-way ticket for Singapore-London, then in the UK buy a London-Singapore return. This can be continued indefinitely, ending up with London-Singapore one-way purchased in the UK. 10 AVOID LONDON From the UK regions, go via mainland Europe or the Gulf rather than London. The overall journey time should be unaffected.