Flights from Aus to USA, Caribbean, South America Question
Replies: 15 - Last Post: Dec 9, 2012 6:45 AM Last Post By: anillos_de_satu...
Dec 1, 2012 3:13 PM
We (my partner and I) are thinking about taking a 6 month holiday for late 2013/early 2014 and are confused about the best travel options and wondering if someone can give some advice please?
We are planning on travelling from Melbourne, Australia to New York, possibly then Miami before going to the Caribbean (Jamaica, Cuba would be definite at this stage) and then heading to South America (Peru, Argentina, Chile, possibly Brazil/Venezuela but really depends on time/costs) before heading back home to Melbourne.
My question is this - I am confused about the best way to do flights. Would a one way ticket from Melb - NY and then a one way Santiago or Buenos Aires to Melb flight at the end be ok? (i.e would we encounter any trouble with the countries in the middle of our trip in Caribbean or South America/proof of onward travel?) We would then make our own way south booking flights as we go/travelling overland, etc.
Or would a better option (less expensive/troublesome?) be a RTW ticket, introducing a South African or SE Asia city on the way home?
Thank you for any advice, it is greatly appreciated :)
Dec 3, 2012 12:28 AM
1I had a quick look on Kayak, and the best price looks to be around US$2,880 on American Airlines. This was for Melbourne-New York, overland to Miami, then Miami to Buenos Aires, overland to Lima, then Lima-Melbourne.
Note that you can't fly from the US to Cuba.
You may be able to get a cheaper price by playing around with the destinations a bit. I don't reckon you'd get it cheaper by using a RTW ticket, especially if you head to South Africa.
You would accumulate a fair amount of oneworld airmiles for this as well, possibly enough to upgrade the last leg to business.
Dec 3, 2012 12:54 AM
2The onward travel thing may come up but it's easy to circumvent. If you find yourself at the airport and not being allowed to check-in due to your lack of onward travel (this has happened to me on a number of occasions flying to US, Thailand, Ecuador and Costa Rica). The solution. Buy a ticket out of that country to a neighbouring country. Buy the cheapest ticket you find but make sure it's 100% refundable. Then just cancel and get the refund (this can take a month to be processed).
Cuba is likely to be an exception and you may end up having to work out how long you want to spend there when you buy your ticket. Most common routes are via Mexico but I'd imagine from Jamaica you could find something.
RTW tickets can be cheaper but they do restrict your freedom to go where you want, when you want so I'd suggest you try and avoid. Maybe a return ticket to L.A. (or into NY and out of LA) and then you can go to S. America and fly back to L.A. at the end of your trip. Of course this would only be good if you knew the end date was set.
Dec 3, 2012 12:55 AM
Dec 3, 2012 10:14 AM
4What countries do you plan to visit in the Caribbean?
You could look for a Circle Pacific fare with Oneworld but the legs to/from the Caribbean and within the Caribbean wouldn't be included and you would need to make a stop in Asia (e.g.: Hong Kong) on your way to the USA.
Regarding flights from Jamaica to Cuba, Jamaica Air Shuttle has direct flights from Montego Bay to Santiago de Cuba (only once a week), take a look at their fares to get an idea (it's expensive). Aerogaviota has flights from Kingston to Havana but it's difficult to find info about the flights of this airline and they could be charter flights. Other than that, you could maybe make it with Cayman Airways changing planes in the Caymans. It's possible to make it with Copa changing planes in Panama but it's a big detour...
You could ask in the USA branch but I think you need proof of onward travel when entering the USA. For other countries, you could ask in their specific branches.
Dec 3, 2012 3:50 PM
5Thanks everyone for your replies! We are still in the planning stage and not 100% positive it will be 6 months. Your advice Peregrinef and ToadofToadHall has been really useful and am not considering a RTW ticket anymore. Was even thinking of getting rid of the US altogether and concentrating on South America and Caribbean which would make everything a touch easier. (not being able to go straight to Cuba from US, etc) And I feel it's better concentrating on one or two areas instead of 3!
anillos_de_saturno thanks for your help! The Caribbean at this stage would just be Cuba and Jamaica but as I said still in early planning stages.
I think we may even just get a return ticket with Qantas or LAN to BA or Santiago and travelling overland to the surrounding countries we wanted to go to, but then we would have to figure out how to get up to Cuba/Jamaica.
Thanks again everyone!! :)
Dec 4, 2012 12:50 AM
Dec 4, 2012 6:24 AM
7I think we may even just get a return ticket with Qantas or LAN to BA or Santiago
Don't forget to look also for the fares of Aerolíneas Argentinas out of Sydney (to Buenos Aires).
we would have to figure out how to get up to Cuba/Jamaica.
There are direct flights to Cuba from many south American countries (Venezuela, Colombia, Peru, Argentina, Ecuador; direct flights out of Ecuador could be seasonal though) and you can go from other South American countries (and from the countries with direct flights too) to Cuba with COPA (changing planes in Panama) or TACA (changing planes in one of its hubs in Central America).
In order to go from South America to Jamaica, the best way would be to make it with COPA changing planes in Panama (unless you are in the Guianas).
Dec 4, 2012 12:31 PM
Dec 6, 2012 3:29 AM
Dec 6, 2012 6:29 AM
10Only trouble with skyscanner is that the price it gives you is not always the price you pay. Once you go on to the actual airline website, it can be quite different.
Also, both skyscanner and Kayak do not list every airline, so there may be some deals that you miss. I usually go to the wikipedia page for a particular airport and find out which airlines fly from there. You can then check which ones you are missing and have a look there as well. This is quite time consuming, but you can get some cheap deals with lesser known airlines if you look hard enough!
Dec 6, 2012 7:21 AM
Dec 7, 2012 2:27 AM
Dec 7, 2012 7:11 AM
Dec 8, 2012 1:47 PM
14Well I read this in a different way. My question to you is why do you want to go to Cuba and Jamaica? There are a lot of islands to choose from and some would be both easier and cheaper to get to if you decide to drop the US and concentrate more on SA.
So unless you have specific interests that have you choosing Cuba and Jamaica, I'd consider changing those as well as dropping the USA. You can practically swim from Venezuela to Trinidad. ;)
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