Seven Weeks, Eight Airlines

Hi all, well I have just booked the last flight for my trip this week. Not the one that takes me home, but one from Seville to Lisbon. I’m taking Ryan Air. I’ve taken their most expensive fare which starts at 78 Euro but keeps going up and up as you book. I also learnt that they charge 55 Euro to check in at the airport. On this fare, I don’t pay anything so you know, I guess that’s a decent choice. The fare included a choice of any seat including extra legroom (dutifully selected!)

Although the fare included two carry on bags, it did not include any checked luggage, which I needed which was 15 Euro for one 20 kg bag. The fare does include security fast track but whether it’s needed at Seville airport I have no idea. Anyways, the total cost for two tickets was 192 Euro, which still worked out substantially cheaper than the next cheapest option, and it is direct. And then I realised – I will be taking an awful lot of different airline on this trip. And I will be flying quite a bit too.

So I went through all the airlines in order and I counted eight – Singapore Airlines, Malaysian Airlines, Air Astana, Turkish Airlines, Belavia, Ryan Air, Emirates and Qantas. Whew! Well, I will have a lot to compare!

Not only that but I will be flying three of them for the very first time – Ryan Air, Belavia and Air Astana, which is exciting to fly a new airline. Air Astana is the number one airline in Central Asia and is based in Almaty, Kazakhstan’s biggest city. I’ll be flying in one day from Kuala Lumpur, which I think is around an eight-hour flight, and then I fly the next day on a shorter flight of around an hour to the Tajik capital Dushanbe.

Belavia is the national carrier of Belarus, and I’m flying Minsk to Barcelona with them. It was a pretty good price – $163US which was I think if not the cheapest one of the three cheapest I had. And for that route there were very limited options, I think the next cheapest was Turkish Airlines and that would have been a real detour and a lot of time added having to transit through Istanbul.

Four flights with Turkish Airlines will be interesting. None are long-haul flights, but Ashgabat to Istanbul, Istanbul to Tel Aviv, Tel Aviv back to Istanbul and then to Minsk means I’ll get a real taste of this airline which I think won best airline in the world a few years ago. And I travelled with them back in 2011, and I found them a pretty decent airline.

The first four days of the trip contains four flights. It wasn’t going to be one a day when I was travelling through Hong Kong, but now it is although two of the four flights are only around an hour each. ONE of them is going to be BUSINESS CLASS – so that’s pretty exciting. It was only 10,000 points Singapore to Kuala Lumpur, and Business Class was 18,000 points, so I thought… why not? I’ve paid a little extra here and there for extra legroom too. The best thing about those first four days though is that I am not overnighting on a plane, I should be able to grab a decent sleep and not be jetlagged when I hit Tajikistan.

In total 7 weeks, 13 flights and 8 airlines. I am going to be seeing the inside of 13 planes, I will be experiencing 13 different airports too. Coming home from Lisbon sees us fly over two nights and a day I think gets eaten up by the winds of time. But flying is an experience, and for me, although I’m not a huge fan of flying it is a big part of this trip, and the journey is as much a part of what I enjoy about travelling. So here’s to the skies!

Thanks for reading – and May the Journey Never End!

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