Connecting, Direct or Non-stop: Which Flights to Book For Your Next Adventure

Thursday, December 19, 2019

Whether you’re heading to Egypt to visit the great pyramids or jetting off to Ecuador, managing your flight itinerary effectively can help you save time, money, and energy for when you get to your destination.

The key to nailing your flight itinerary is to know precisely what you’re getting yourself into when you make the booking. But that’s easier said than done if you don’t have much experience with the ins-and-outs of flight bookings and air travel. But don’t panic. Here’s the complicated world of flight bookings made simple.

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Connecting Flights

Connecting Flights are a good place to start for the budget traveler. The low price-point is a good indication that your journey will be long, with a couple of stops along the way. This means that what you save in cash, you lose in time, so before you book your ticket, it’s important to ask yourself if this exchange is going to be worth it for you. If you’re only going for a week, it may not make sense for you to spend 48 hours in airports, but if you have an extended trip planned, those two days could be less important to you.

While many people groan at the idea of a long layover, it’s possible to turn this downside of connecting flights into a real plus. If you’re headed to Alaska via British Columbia, for example, why not break up your journey with a night at a hotel near Kelowna International Airport? Enjoy a stay in a comfortable suite after a long flight, making the most of the free wifi to update your travel blog. And when it’s time to head back to the airport, they’ll even print your boarding pass for you!

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Direct Flights

Direct flights are the source of much confusion when it comes to booking air travel. Many people assume that a direct flight means you’ll be flying directly to your destination. But this is not the case.

Not to be confused with a ‘nonstop’ flight, a direct flight has a single flight number but may involve stops at several airports on the way to your destination. Unlike connecting flights, these stops are usually fairly short, and you don’t always have to get off the plane—for example, if it’s just a pit stop for refueling. But if you do have to disembark, you shouldn’t have to pick up your luggage, and airline staff will guide you directly to your next departure gate.

Nonstop Flights

If time-saving, rather than cost-saving, is high on your agenda, then the nonstop flight is for you. Booking a nonstop flight means you’ll board a single plane that will take off and won’t touch down again until you get to your destination. Nonstop inter-continental flights used to be fairly rare because planes couldn’t carry enough fuel to make the distance, but advancements in flight technology have made nonstop routes more common. (If you’re willing to endure the ‘longest flight in the world’, you can even fly nonstop from New York to Sydney now!)

Booking flights can be confusing at the best of times. These tips will help you ensure you pick an itinerary that works for you.

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