How to buy an open-ended airfare ticket

If flexibility is the most important aspect of an airline ticket you plan to purchase, then you need to purchase an open-ended airfare ticket. Almost every airline will offer one of these tickets for a price. They are meant for travellers who either don't know when they want to return to their departure city, or simply want the flexibility to travel when they desire. Many business travellers purchase these tickets when they are travelling on business. These types of travellers realise they may need to stay longer to complete business, so spending extra on an open-ended ticket is needed. Students travelling the globe also opt for this kind of ticket.

Search for the airline that flies to your destination. Once you have found a couple of these airlines, contact their customer service department to see if they sell open-ended airline tickets. Not every airline will sell this type of ticket.

Compare prices of the open-ended priced tickets on each airline. You can expect to pay almost 50 to 100 per cent more on one of these tickets. Once you have determined from which airline you prefer to purchase the ticket, provide a credit card to the representative. You can also purchase these tickets from a travel agent.

Realise you do not have to start and end your trip in the same place, but this will also increase the cost of your ticket.

Understand there is no guarantee of boarding the return flight you want if you try to use your open-ended ticket. Passengers with a confirmed seat will have priority over you.


Keep your open-ended ticket in a safe place, such as a safe or safety deposit box. Treat this ticket like you would a large amount of cash. Use a travel agency that specialises in world travel and open-ended global airline tickets to save money on the ticket. They buy these tickets wholesale, so some travellers find discounts from using these agencies.

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About the Author

Connors, a commercial pilot for the past decade, has traveled all over the world sampling the best from each culture. As a freelance writer for Handmark media, he draws literary inspiration from his years as a top New York city chef and his travels around the world as a pilot.