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Best way to break up travel time to Asia from Canada

Best way to break up travel time to Asia from Canada

Old Apr 30th, 2024, 05:10 AM
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Best way to break up travel time to Asia from Canada

Hi

My husband and I just got back from Thailand yesterday and we travelled 27 hrs in total from Bangkok-Seoul-Toronto. It was way too long for us. My husband cannot sleep on planes . We are in our mid 50's and would love to travel to Vietnam/Cambodia next March but my husband says we need to find another way to do our flights and break up the travel time/transit time. We would be leaving from Toronto. We do not mind stopping in a city we have not been to for a couple of days. Europe would be find for us .. We flew with Korean Airlines internationally this time and they were great. I also thought about using EVA. .

Any help/suggestions would be of great help so we can get planning our international flights. We of course would not be flying into and out of the same city in Vietnam. We were hoping to go to Siam Reap for 3 days but if not able to do that then that is fine. We have about 3- 4 weeks for our trip.

Thanks Kim
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Old Apr 30th, 2024, 12:39 PM
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When we flew from San Francisco to Vietnam five years ago, we ended up booking a flight on Philippine Airlines in business class that had a brief layover in Manila. Ir was the most affordable business class flight we could find and we got a bit of sleep. We then flew from Manila to Hong Kong where we stayed a few days. We booked a flight on another airline to and from Vietnam. On our return, we spent an overnight in Hong Kong at the hotel right next to the airport as our flight to Manila left very early in the morning. We chose to have a longer layover in Manila (we did a quick tour there) and flew home. It was a bit convoluted but it worked for us.

A simpler plan might be: Air Canada has non-stop flights to Tokyo. You could visit there for a few days in each direction. It looks like quite a few airlines have flights from Tokyo to Vietnam.
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Old Apr 30th, 2024, 12:42 PM
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I would encourage you to visit Siem Reap, if you can. It really was a highlight of the trip.
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Old Apr 30th, 2024, 05:29 PM
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You can consider doing Cambodia first and then Vietnam (South to North), less hot in South.
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Old Apr 30th, 2024, 10:48 PM
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I am afraid there is no getting away from the fact that Toronto to Vietnam is going to be > 20 hours and is always going to involve an indirect flight. The best way to deal with this is to break the journey into more manageable chunks. We live in the UK and frequently visit family in Australia , we usually break the 28 hour + journey in the Far East - Hanoi, Seoul, KL or wherever has the cheaper fares and whichever city we want to visit. 12-14 hours on a plane seems a lot more manageble when you have a few days in a city to explore, than 25-30 with a brief touchdown in an airport. Whichever way you look at it a whole day in a plane is not a joy to look forward to even in Business Class!

I think your biggest decision is where to take that break. Europe is the obvious candidate with a lot of options for the 7/8 hour flight from Canada - London, Madrid, Amsterdam are the main options with "only another 14 hours on to Vietnam. An open jaw ticket into Hanoi and out of Saigon would work best and shouldn't cost much extra.

It is easy and cheap to get a local budget airline flight from either of those cities to Siem Reap though , with 3-4 weeks to play with , I would take an overland trip through the Mekong Delta to Phnom Penh stopping off at place like Can Tho, Ben Tre and Chau Doc along the way.

Eva are a 5* rated airline and Taipei is a wonderful city in which to spend a few days. We spent a week in Taiwan and loved it! some photos from our time there https://accidentalnomads.com/category/taiwan/
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Old May 1st, 2024, 09:37 AM
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On an intercontinal trip like yours your connection time can be up to 24 hours. Maybe arrive Tokyo, Seoul, or Taipei in the afternoon and travel on the next morning.

If you don't see a long-enough connection time then do a multi-city search, say YYZ to TYO one day and TYO to REP the next day. REP = Siem Reap and you can probably find a nonstop from one of the three cities mentioned above. Angkor Wat deserves to be ranked as a Wonder of the World.

You can also try a multi-city search to book a stopover (more than 24 hours). This might have a small additional charge.

The multi-city search also gives you the option to book an open jaw ticket, like Toronto to REP and returning from Vietnam. Or to Hanoi, returning from HCMC.

If I wanted to go to Bangkok or Singapore then I would consider buying a roundtrip from YYZ to Tokyo. Get another roundtrip or open-jaw on Zipair from/to Tokyo Narita (NRT) in their lie-flat seat to BKK/SIN. Then have a stopover in Tokyo both ways. Of course, you could do this with other airlines and destinations.
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Old May 1st, 2024, 09:46 PM
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Is flying through the Middle East a poor option?
Dubai, etc?
Istanbul?
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Old May 2nd, 2024, 08:23 AM
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Originally Posted by ekscrunchy
Is flying through the Middle East a poor option?
Dubai, etc?
Istanbul?
That is possible but would be a longer trip. The mideast carriers likely offer free stopovers (Doha, Dubai, Abu Dhabi). TK also offers Istanbul stopovers.

I picked Hanoi as the destination for this mapping of three routes from Toronto: A map from the Great Circle Mapper - Great Circle Mapper (gcmap.com)

Would be about 8,000 miles if there were a nonstop (there isn't).
8,700 miles via Tokyo
10,100 miles via Dubai

Figuring 500 mph, the ballpark travel time would be about 16 hours on a nonstop. Via Tokyo would be about 1.5 hours longer than nonstop. Going via Dubai would be about 4 hours longer than nonstop.

With a 1- or 2-hour connection the travel time would be 20 to 23 hours or much longer:
Toronto to Hanoi | Google Flights

Say it was 24.5 hours travel time and a 23.5 hours layover each way, getting there and back would take 4 four full days.

Or 19 hours travel time plus 21 hours layover, then 40 hours each way.

Last edited by mrwunrfl; May 2nd, 2024 at 08:31 AM.
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Old May 2nd, 2024, 10:36 AM
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I did a brief check and couldn't find any non-stop flights from Toronto to Vietnam.
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Old May 2nd, 2024, 11:25 AM
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Originally Posted by KTtravel
When we flew from San Francisco to Vietnam five years ago, we ended up booking a flight on Philippine Airlines in business class that had a brief layover in Manila. Ir was the most affordable business class flight we could find and we got a bit of sleep. We then flew from Manila to Hong Kong where we stayed a few days. We booked a flight on another airline to and from Vietnam. On our return, we spent an overnight in Hong Kong at the hotel right next to the airport as our flight to Manila left very early in the morning. We chose to have a longer layover in Manila (we did a quick tour there) and flew home. It was a bit convoluted but it worked for us.

A simpler plan might be: Air Canada has non-stop flights to Tokyo. You could visit there for a few days in each direction. It looks like quite a few airlines have flights from Tokyo to Vietnam.
Thanks for the reply and idea.
Kim
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Old May 2nd, 2024, 11:28 AM
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Originally Posted by DinHo
You can consider doing Cambodia first and then Vietnam (South to North), less hot in South.
Hi
We are trying to decide if we should do Feb/March or March April. I saw a trip report for March of this year and it was almost 40 degrees in March in Siem Riep. I am not sure if that is usual . We figured if we started in the south first then went north , that it would make the most sense. We just got back from Thailand and it was way too hot in Bangkok.
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Old May 2nd, 2024, 11:40 AM
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Thanks for the suggestions. We for sure need to break up our flights in chunks to and from Toronto to our final destinations.

We have looked into Phnom Penh and it looks way too traumatizing for us ( personal traumatic event) . We would like to go to Siem Reap if it is doable with our itineary. Taiwan looks very nice as a stopover.

Thanks

Last edited by kimmer1968; May 2nd, 2024 at 11:50 AM.
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Old May 2nd, 2024, 11:41 AM
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Originally Posted by mrwunrfl
On an intercontinal trip like yours your connection time can be up to 24 hours. Maybe arrive Tokyo, Seoul, or Taipei in the afternoon and travel on the next morning.

If you don't see a long-enough connection time then do a multi-city search, say YYZ to TYO one day and TYO to REP the next day. REP = Siem Reap and you can probably find a nonstop from one of the three cities mentioned above. Angkor Wat deserves to be ranked as a Wonder of the World.

You can also try a multi-city search to book a stopover (more than 24 hours). This might have a small additional charge.

The multi-city search also gives you the option to book an open jaw ticket, like Toronto to REP and returning from Vietnam. Or to Hanoi, returning from HCMC.

If I wanted to go to Bangkok or Singapore then I would consider buying a roundtrip from YYZ to Tokyo. Get another roundtrip or open-jaw on Zipair from/to Tokyo Narita (NRT) in their lie-flat seat to BKK/SIN. Then have a stopover in Tokyo both ways. Of course, you could do this with other airlines and destinations.
Thanks . I will look into these optons.
Kim
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Old May 2nd, 2024, 11:44 AM
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Thanks for the three route maps. We definitely cannot fly more than 13/14 hrs at one time and in one day with other flights added. My husband cannot sleep on a plane and we cannot afford business class to be able to lay down.

Kim
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Old May 2nd, 2024, 11:49 AM
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I wish we could afford business class with seats that you could lay down in but we cannot. Thanks for the idea to fly to Tokyo.
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Old May 2nd, 2024, 03:58 PM
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Originally Posted by kimmer1968
I wish we could afford business class with seats that you could lay down in but we cannot. Thanks for the idea to fly to Tokyo.
Before you shut the door on biz class try www.asaptickets.com.

They are A+ rated by the BBB and friends of ours got a great deal last winter for flights ORD-DEL.

Also I know UAL has a plan to pay over time. Maybe AC does too or other major airlines.
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Old May 3rd, 2024, 07:30 AM
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If not business class then definitely see if premium economy is affordable for you.

>> cannot fly more than 13/14 hrs at one time and in one day with other flights added

Ok, that is a good amount of time for you to have a one-stop trip each way.

Remember that I mentioned that you can figure travel time to be 500 mph. So, 13-14 hour would be about 6,500 to 7,000 miles

Here is another map with more routing options.
A map from the Great Circle Mapper - Great Circle Mapper (gcmap.com)

That shows that Toronto to Taipei shortest distance is 7,519 miles. At 500 mph that is about a 15-hour flight. The Google Flights search result I gave above shows that YYZ-TPE flight time is 15 hr 30 min. (so my rule of themb of 500 mph is reasonably good when applied to the great circle distance).

If you really want to make a Taiwan stopover then you would need to make two stops on the way to Southeast Asia. Your best stopover on the way to Taiwan would probably be Vancouver (YVR)

I just learned that the Siem Reap airport code is SAI for Siem Reap-Angkor International Airport (opened in Oct 2022 to replace REP).

Here is a query for a two-week trip in October with destination options of Hanoi, (HAN), HCMC/Saigon (SGN), Siem Reap (SAI), and Bangkok (BKK):

in Economy class: Toronto to Hanoi and 3 more | Google Flights

in Premium Economy: Toronto to Hanoi and 3 more | Google Flights

Last edited by mrwunrfl; May 3rd, 2024 at 07:36 AM.
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Old May 3rd, 2024, 07:54 AM
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Zipair has lie-flat seats. This a low-cost carrier version of Japan Airlines. I jist checked their destinations webpage ZIPAIR Basic Information | ZIPAIR Official Website

Here is the price breakdown for a one-way Vancouver to Tokyo to Bangkok in lie-flat seat with premium package that includes checked luggage, meal, other stuff.

Total
US$1,819.09

Flight for segment 1
US$998.40

Flight for segment 2
US$536.80

Package of segment: 1
US$143.37

Package of segment: 2
US$80.52

Ancillaries of segment: 1
US$0.00

Ancillaries of segment: 2
US$0.00

Taxes, Fees and Charges (segment 1 )
US$46.59

Taxes, Fees and Charges (segment 2 )
US$13.41
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Old May 3rd, 2024, 09:58 AM
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Thank you. Will look into this.
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Old May 3rd, 2024, 10:01 AM
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Thanks for all the information. It is much appreciated. Kim
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