All of the big airline alliances offer a round-the-world ticket option to customers, but only the oneworld alliance offers two. The oneworld Explorer is different from most other airline alliance RTW tickets, but oneworld’s other RTW ticket option is more comparable to other similar offerings from other airline alliances. This second option is called the Global Explorer ticket.
The Global Explorer ticket is based on the number of miles you will travel as part of your round the world itinerary, as opposed to the oneworld Explorer which is based on the number of continents you will visit. The oneworld Explorer may be a bit more flexible, but the Global Explorer covers the globe a bit better.
Be sure to read our oneworld alliance round the world ticket review. If you’ve used oneworld for your RTW ticket, you can leave your own review, too.
Here’s what you need to know about the Global Explorer ticket when you’re comparing it against other RTW ticket options.
- What kind of traveler is this ticket best for? – The Global Explorer ticket is best for travelers who are prepared to accept a certain degree of rigidity in terms of itinerary planning, and whose itinerary includes mostly flights (as opposed to ground transfers between airports and flights). The Global Explorer ticket has better coverage than the oneworld Explorer ticket in the South Pacific and Russia.
- What airlines can I fly with this ticket? – The Global Explorer ticket has a longer list of airlines you can fly than the oneworld Explorer, because it includes both full members of the oneworld alliance and also airlines that have code-sharing partnerships with oneworld airlines. At the moment, the list of oneworld airlines you can fly with a Global Explorer ticket includes: American Airlines, British Airways, Cathay Pacific, Finnair, Iberia, Japan Airlines, LAN, Malev Hungarian, Mexicana, Qantas, and Royal Jordanian. The oneworld affiliate airlines include: American Eagle, BA Cityflyer, Comair, Dragonair, JAL Express, and Jetconnect. The list of partner airlines you can also fly includes: Aer Lingus, Air Pacific, Alaska Airlines, Horizon Air, Gulf Air, S7 Airlines, Kingfisher, Kingfisher Red, and Qantas code-share flights operated by Air Tahiti Nui, Jetstar, South African Airways, and Vietnam Airlines.
- How long is the ticket valid once I start my trip? – A Global Explorer ticket is good for 12 months from the first flight of your itinerary.
- How many flight segments are on this ticket? – There is a maximum of 16 flight segments on a Global Explorer ticket, and if you travel overland from one airport to another that counts as one segment.
- Are there any required stops? – No.
- What’s the maximum flight mileage I can accumulate on this ticket? – You can buy the Global Explorer ticket in four different mileage increments, depending on how far you think your trip will take you. You can buy a ticket in the following amounts: 26,000 miles, 29,000 miles, 34,000 miles, or 39,000 miles. Note that only the 34,000 mile option is available in all classes of travel – Economy, Business, and First – all others are avaialble only in Economy.
- What are the restrictions on this ticket? – Your travels on a Global Explorer ticket must continue in the same direction once you start your trip (eastward or westward) from continent to continent. You may go back and forth (east and west) within a continent once you’re there, but can’t return to the place where your trip began by backtracking. You can return to a different city than the one you left originally, but only if it’s in the same country. There are a limited number of stopovers in a given region (as defined by Global Explorer) depending on the mileage of the ticket you purchasee.
- Are there any bonuses that come with this ticket? – Children traveling on a Global Explorer ticket with an adult pay 75% of the cost of an adult fare, and infants pay 10% of the cost of an adult fare.
- Anything else in the fine print I should know about? – Ground travel between two airports will be counted as one “flight” segment, and also counted toward your total mileage.
- How can I book this ticket? – You can book a Global Explorer ticket with a travel agent or the reservations department of any of the oneworld airlines (these tickets are not available for booking online).
photo by J o