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Old 02-19-2013, 04:48 PM   #1
keenercam
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European Cruises ending in different port - question

We are sailing July 2014 on a cruise that starts in Venice and ends in Barcelona. I was browsing airfare for this year for approximately those dates, flying NE US to Venice and then Barcelona to Northeast US, just out of curiosity. It looks like booking one-way tickets (for example New York to Venice and then Barcelona to NY) is about twice the cost of round-trip using the same airport.

Can anyone give me advice on how to handle this? Is there a "window" where the airfare might be more reasonable than it seems it will be at this point? We paid about $1525 RT/person when we flew PHL-Barcelona-PHL in summer 2011. The airfares I am seeing now, because they are not round trip can be over $2000/person/one way.

EEK!!! Looking for any advice you might share, especially if you are doing a DCL cruise this summer with different embarkation and debarkation ports.
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Old 02-19-2013, 04:56 PM   #2
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Some of the web comparision sites will allow 2 one way tickets, but it also might be cheaper to go back to Venice from Barcelona by air or train and fly out of there.

Or even some other city. Find the cheapest flight to Europe from where you are and just fly there and travel to Venice and then return there from Barcelona. You will have to add a day on each end, but maybe traveling by train would save you the hotels?

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Old 02-19-2013, 05:13 PM   #3
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You should be able to book an "open jaw" ticket which would go PHL-BCN and then VCE-PHL. Go to a site like kayak.com and do the multi-city search.
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Old 02-19-2013, 05:21 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by holula View Post
You should be able to book an "open jaw" ticket which would go PHL-BCN and then VCE-PHL. Go to a site like kayak.com and do the multi-city search.
Oh, wow!! What a difference that made!!! It looks like if I book both ways at one time it is CONSIDERABLY less than if I price out one way going and then price out one way coming home. How strange! I have never clicked on that "multiple destinations" button on any of the booking sites, so I didn't know how to do that. Thank you!!!

neg58 - Thank you for the idea. Taking a train back to the original arrival airport would be a great idea for a lot of itineraries, but just wouldn't work for cruise start in Venice and end in Barcelona.
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Old 02-19-2013, 06:17 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by keenercam View Post
Oh, wow!! What a difference that made!!! It looks like if I book both ways at one time it is CONSIDERABLY less than if I price out one way going and then price out one way coming home. How strange! I have never clicked on that "multiple destinations" button on any of the booking sites, so I didn't know how to do that. Thank you!!!

neg58 - Thank you for the idea. Taking a train back to the original arrival airport would be a great idea for a lot of itineraries, but just wouldn't work for cruise start in Venice and end in Barcelona.
For future reference, an open-jaw ticket is one in which the open part of the itinerary (here, BCN to VCE) is shorter than either of the other two legs. Sometimes you need not even fly in and back to the same city to get open jaw pricing. And, you can often have the open part of the jaw be on either end. For example, DFW-BCN VCE-DFW is a permissible open jaw. Similarly, DFW-BCN-LAX would be a permissible open jaw, because the open part of the jaw (DFW to LAX) is shorter than either of the two segments (DFW-BCN or BCN to LAX). Some airlines require the open parts of the jaw to be in the same region.

The key to an open jaw ticket is that it must be one ticket. This is usually not that important, but sometimes is. With two one ways, they are independent tickets and will be honored without regard to each other. On an open jaw, if you miss the first segment, you will void the entire ticket, etc. Similarly, if you cancel the ticket, you cancel the entire journey. Also, one-ways often book into higher fare categories, which can mean things like ability to upgrade using miles or mileage instruments or lower change or cancellation fees.

Open jaws are not as important as they once were, because so many airlines now price everything by segment anyway. USA to Europe, though, is a notable exception. Asian carriers do it too.
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Old 02-19-2013, 06:43 PM   #6
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I am booking a multi-city ticket for this year. We will fly into munich then out of bcn. Prices are the same as doing round trip in/out of the same city.
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Old 02-20-2013, 07:59 AM   #7
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lark - Thank you. I had never even heard of this. Your explanation is helpful!
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Old 02-20-2013, 09:08 AM   #8
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Oh thanks for that reminder!! I was looking at one way also and like WHOA!

I was thinking we might get one way on miles and pay one way, but that might not be cost effective.... Hmmmmm... time to get creative!

Thanks!!!
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Old 02-20-2013, 02:12 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by gatorfreud View Post
Oh thanks for that reminder!! I was looking at one way also and like WHOA!

I was thinking we might get one way on miles and pay one way, but that might not be cost effective.... Hmmmmm... time to get creative!

Thanks!!!
Kim
Some carriers do price one-ways at half round trip, even to Europe. The cheapest is Iceland Air -- you have to stop in Reykjavic but you can get to many European cities, like London, Madrid, Paris, Milan, etc., for as low as $400 one way. This works best if you are in a city from which Iceland has departures (DEN, SEA, YYZ, IAD, BOS, MCO). You can use this technique to get close to a city from which you can get a cheap flight to BCN. Iceland even has flights to BCN, but they are not as frequent and a bit more expensive. This is not a great technique in the winter, when you cannot afford the potential of a delay in KEF. Also, be mindful of the fact that there are not a huge number of flights every day, so it's not something you want to do if you're going to be tight to your cruise, since Irregular Operations can strand you.

Another carrier that usually does not have punitive one-way fares to Europe is Aer Lingus, which is good if you are in or near Boston, Washington DC (Dulles), New York, or Chicago. You can connect on Aer Lingus to most European cities through SNN or DUB.

Last edited by lark; 08-06-2013 at 06:28 PM.
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