Simon Calder's Holiday Helpdesk: What's the best deal for one-way to Oz?
Simon Calder’s career in travel started at Gatwick Airport, where he cleaned aircraft for Laker Airways and later worked as a security officer. He became The Independent’s Travel Correspondent in 1994, and is known as “the Man Who Pays His Way” because he does not accept free travel facilities. He writes across the Independent titles, as well as for the Evening Standard.
Thursday 21 February 2013
Q. I am planning a one-way trip to Oz from Edinburgh, time and changes no object. Any suggestions? My dad says you're in the know.
@WeeSlice, by Twitter
A. I take it you don't need to leave imminently, so you won't have to pay a one-way fare of £1,300 or more that is being charged for departures in the next few days to Sydney. If you really are that flexible, then wait for the late April-June low season. China Southern has a fare of £550. It includes a hop from Edinburgh to Amsterdam on KLM, the long-haul flight to China Southern's hub in Guangzhou, where you have just a 90-minute wait before the onward flight to Sydney.
However, you can slice £7 off this if you use the new Virgin Atlantic flight from Edinburgh to Heathrow then fly onwards on China Eastern: £543 in total. You could save another £30 by taking the Megabus from Edinburgh rather than flying.
To save you the trouble of trying other options, I have also looked at getting an easyJet flight to Amsterdam and a second ticket from there, to reduce Air Passenger Duty; and buying a flight to Singapore, Bangkok or Bali and a separate ticket on a low-cost airline. Neither came close to the £550 quote for a single ticket from Edinburgh to Sydney.
If you are flying to another Australian city, fares are likely to be higher even though the distance from Edinburgh is less.
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