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How do we get best one-way fare from europe to US?

How do we get best one-way fare from europe to US?

Old Jul 18th, 2004, 07:06 AM
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esd
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How do we get best one-way fare from europe to US?

We hope to take a transatlantic cruise in the spring..FL to Genoa. I've checked on this in the past and quickly changed my mind because of the airfare back but I'm weakening again and we booked an April crossing next spring. (We're retired and have always wanted to do this). I thought that around the time final payment for the cruise is due (January) I'll check every source possible to find a fare back that won't break the bank!

One flight from, say, Milan to Atlanta would suffice and we can figure out Atlanta to home ourselves. I figure just taking one flight would have to be cheaper than connecting flights. And we can drive to Milan from where we'll be staying with my husbands family.

If any of you experienced flyers have any suggestions that I can put to use when the time comes PLEASE pass them along.

And can anyone tell me why a one-way ticket costs more than 2x's as much as a rt ticket? sample: I just checked a rt ticket using dates this fall..atlanta to Milan..$800+pp. I then checked the same return date as a one-way (another airline that gave me a one-way option)and it was $2000+pp.
Thanks for any advice you have!

Also, yes, I've thought that if we cruise back in the fall we can use half a rt to get over there but we would rather go in the spring if possible.
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Old Jul 18th, 2004, 07:16 AM
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Have you checked with your cruise line? My understanding is that they usually have sources for return airline tickets.

I think some consolidators handle one-way tickets, but have no personal knowledge of this. I'm sure someone else will read your posting and give you a reference.

If all else fails, buy the round trip and just don't use the return ticket.
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Old Jul 18th, 2004, 10:07 AM
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Forget about looking for a cheap one-way ticket. As suggested already, first check with the cruiseline and if not satisfied, buy a regular R/T ticket from your hometown to your destination with the return at least 1 week later to satisfy the cheap fare conditions and throw away the return and don't feel guilty about it. After all you are not throwing away money, you are actually saving money.

Now to answer your question as to why one-way fares seem to be more expensive.

People assume that a one way fare should be about 1/2 or at least 1/4 cheaper than the cheap R/T ticket, but it can't be and here is why.

Airlines have different fares for different needs.

The higest coach fare is the one with no restrictions, fully refundable. It's an ideal fare for the businessperson that may have to leave tomorrow and comeback a day after. Also there is a possibility that the meeting could be cancelled and therfore no need to travel. So the airline and the businessperson have to play this game with each other. The airline will sell you a very expensive ticket knowing there is a possibility that it may have to refund the money. The businessperson is willing to pay for the expensive ticket, but is assured that it does not have any restrictions and it's also fully refundable upon request with no questions asked. So for the sake of this example let's say the ticket costs $1000.

But the airline still has many seats left on the plane and it wants to sell the seats. The other market is the leisure market. So the airline is willing to sell the leisure traveler a seat on the same plane for let's say $250 R/T, but it carries many restrictions and it's not refundable. Once the ticket is purchased the airline knows the money is theirs and also it tells the traveler that the ticket has to be purchased at least 7, 14, 21 days ahead and the traveler has to stay at the destination over a Saturday night, etc, etc. The ticket could be changed for a fee, but it's non-refundable none the less.

So, many leisure travelers have a hard time understanding why a one-way ticket is $500 when they pay $250 for a R/T. Because the one-way ticket has to be exatly 1/2 of the most expensive fare, not the cheapest fare, otherwise the businessperson would bypass the higher fares and just buy one-ways whenever it was neeeded.

I hope this helps you understand the fare system a little better. It's a simple explanation as there is more to it, but basically that's why one-way fares are always more than the cheapest R/T fares.

The exceptions are the low cost carriers. They went away from the multi-tiered fare system and are willing to sell you a one-way ticket for a reasonable amount. On the other hand they can't get you across the big pond, so it doesn't apply in this case.
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Old Jul 18th, 2004, 10:12 AM
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Very important: If you do buy a R/T ticket remember that it has to be Italy-US-Italy, not the other way around. Nothing will happen if you throw away the return portion, but if you were to throw away the outbound portion the return would be cancelled. So if you bought US-Italy-US and tried to use the Italy-US prtion only, you would not be able to since you did not use the US-Italy portion first. I hope this makes sense.

Also there is more on this subject here:

http://www.fodors.com/forums/pgMessa...6&tid=34512513
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Old Jul 18th, 2004, 01:58 PM
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Yes,AAFF, I thought about doing the rt ticket starting from Italy. I checked that way, too, and it was 700+euros which probably is the same as rt starting from here. But will it work with american passports? I imagine someone saying 'aha, another cruiser trying to pull the wool over our eyes' or something. I will check into that though.
As for the fares, yes, I see what you are saying. BUT I'd be more than willing to buy a one-way ticket for just the price of a rt coach ticket and I can't see why the airlines care in that case.

The only thing about getting the cruise line to book our flight is that we want to stay over there for a few weeks and when I mentioned that to the cruise agent, he said we'd best book our own.
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Old Jul 18th, 2004, 02:23 PM
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I will tell you again. There will not be any problems. Also, I don't know your exact date and the cities, but www.expedia.com is showing a fare of $700US from Milan to Miami in April.

Please read my post again. The one-way fare has to be 1/2 of the highest full fare economy fare. Just because you want to pay a cheap R/T fare for one-way ticket is not enough. If that was the case the airlin'e fare system would fall apart. If an airline can collect $1000 for a seat from a person in need and $250 for the person that plans ahead, if they sold you a one-way ticket for $250, then they would never be able to get the $1000 fare, because the person in need would just buy 2 one-way fares for $250 each which would net the airline only $500.
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Old Jul 19th, 2004, 04:32 PM
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Most cruise lines will allow you to book whatever dates you want. For a fee. They call it an air deviation and it is usually about $50 per person extra.
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Old Jul 19th, 2004, 05:36 PM
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That's good to know. Early in January, just before our cruise final payment is due and while we can still cancel if need be with no penalty, I am going to call everyone and their brother to see what kind of one-way fare I can come up with...be it one-way or a rt of some sort. Barring that, I would certainly welcome the cruiseline's help for the fee you mentioned.
If all else fails, we might change our booking to the fall return cruise and then fly over which to me would be easier to accomplish than a return flight from Europe, that's if the only solution is half a rt ticket.

Thanks to you all for your help.
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Old Jul 20th, 2004, 04:01 AM
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I meant to relay one little story regarding using half a rt ticket.

A couple of years ago I was telling my doctor about our dilemma trying to cruise one-way and fly one-way. He said be careful..he flew to Michigan with a rt ticket, drove back, and his cc was billed a very high one-way fare. I don't know if it was planned (as it would be in my case) or if the opportunity just arose while he was there to drive back home to Arkansas.

If the airlines can and will do this, then a rt ticket may not be the solution either.
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Old Jul 20th, 2004, 05:11 AM
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Please stop spreading these old urbam legends.

There is a possibility if a certain travel agent is selling R/Ts and advizing the customers to dump the return. The TA would be the one that ends up paying.

Another possibility is if a corporate TA is doing it. The corporation will be asked to cough up the money.

The point is, there has to be a pattern before any airline even considers putting their tarrif security people on the case.

A Joe Shmoe dumping a return? Maybe some people crave attention, but this will not do it.

So, PLEASE stop from spreading this nonsense.

Allow me to qualify my post. I do not advocate doing this on a regular basis. An occasional dump of a return will NOT land any individual in an airline jail. You could have heard, know somebody, but ultimately, it just doesn't happen.
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Old Jul 20th, 2004, 02:41 PM
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I am just relating exactly what he told me. In fact, he was surprised at their doing that. I don't know who made his reservation or anything other than what I said, which is exactly what he told me! Personally, I don't see how they could get away with it either, but he was our family doctor for 12 years and I never knew him to deal in 'old urban legends'.

Relax and take two aspirin!
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Old Jul 20th, 2004, 03:12 PM
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I thought my reply was calm, cool and collected. Sorry that you didn't like what you read.

I'm very relaxed and no need to take any asprin. Thank you for caring.
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