You have many options to fly to your desired destination the way you want. One such option that we are going to look at here is called an “open-jaw” flight. If you are not familiar with the term “open-jaw” flight, well, do not worry. Our review will help you understand what this really means and how you can travel on such an itinerary without any hassle.
In this blog, we are going to take a look at what is an open-jaw flight and how to book such flights for your trip.
What is an Open-Jaw Flight?
An open-jaw flight basically means a round-trip itinerary, in which the departure and arrival airports are not located in the same city and/or country. There are usually open gaps between the cities, which can be more than one, depending on how many gaps a person selects during the flight booking process.
A simple example can be cited here to understand what exactly an open-jaw itinerary is. For instance, a person is flying from Chicago to Manchester, but the return trip to Chicago is from another city, i.e., Dublin.
Thus, from the example given above, your arrival city and the departure city for your return trip are both located in different countries.
Types of Open-Jaw Flights
There are three types of open-jaw flights. These include the following:
- Origin Open-Jaw Flight
- Destination Open-Jaw Flight
- Double Open-Jaw Flight
(a) Origin Open-Jaw Flight
An origin open-jaw flight refers to a round-trip itinerary, in which travelers fly from one city to another, however, they return to a different city and not the city from where they had originally departed from.
An example of an origin open-jaw flight is a flight that departs from Las Vegas to Morocco, but the return trip is from Morocco to California.
(b) Destination Open-Jaw Flight
A destination open-jaw flight refers to a round-trip itinerary, in which travelers fly from one city to another, however, they return to the original city from a different city.
An example of a destination open-jaw flight is a flight that departs from Las Vegas to Morocco, but the return trip is from Cairo to Las Vegas.
(c) Double Open-Jaw Flight
A double open-jaw flight refers to a round-trip itinerary, in which travelers purchase two separate fares for their trip.
An example of a double open-jaw flight is a flight, where a traveler flies from Las Vegas to Morocco, however, their return trip is from Dubai to Las Vegas.
Although open-jaw flights may resemble multi-city flights, they do have a little difference. We have a separate blog on multi-city flights that you can read by clicking on the link.
How is an Open-Jaw Itinerary Different from a Simple Round-trip Itinerary?
Since an open-jaw flight includes a round-trip itinerary, it is different from a simple round-trip itinerary. Also, many people may relate an open-jaw itinerary to a multi-city itinerary, since there is little similarity between the two. However, one thing that differentiates them is the fact that an open-jaw itinerary does not include flights between cities, which is the case in multi-city flights.
What happens in a simple round-trip itinerary is that you take a flight to your destination city and return to the original city from the same destination city. This is called a “simple round-trip” in air travel. Here, only your returning flight or airline changes.
However, if your departure and arrival cities are not the same, then we can say that your itinerary is “open-jaw”. Here, your returning flight or airline and even the departure city change. The departure city for your round-trip can be located in another country as well. So, you get a chance to visit places during your trip.
Let’s take an example here in order to better understand the difference between the two.
In the case of a simple round-trip, you fly from Houston to Toronto via one airline and back to Houston again from Toronto via another airline.
On the other hand, in the case of an open-jaw round-trip, you fly from Houston to Berlin via one airline, but your return trip is from Romania to Houston via another airline. So, here, you get to visit two cities in different countries, Berlin and Romania, while on your way back home.
Is there any Benefit to Travelling on Open-Jaw Flights?
Looking at the definition given above, we can say that there could be one or more benefits to traveling on open-jaw flights.
A major benefit of an open-jaw flight is that when you are traveling to international destinations, this is a much cheaper option for you than having to purchase two separate one-way flights. Also, certain open-jaw itineraries, depending on the route, can be less expensive than traveling on simple round-trip itineraries.
Another benefit that can be included here is when you travel on an open-jaw flight, you have the opportunity to visit different places when you arrive at your destination airport. In other words, you can arrive at one city, spend some time in another city, then board your departing flight from a different city or airport. Thus, you get open gaps between the cities. You will get to make these selections when you book your flight.
But, if you are wondering about the expenses of traveling on open-jaw flights, that would depend on your travel needs. Of course, not to mention the ground transportation services you may require to get between cities and airports.
How to Book an Open-Jaw Flight for your Trip Online
In order to book an open-jaw flight for your trip, you will need to book your flight using the multi-city option.
In the following section, we have provided you with all the steps that are required to book an open-jaw flight online at the airliner’s website.
1. If you are booking an open-jaw flight directly from the airline’s website, open a web browser on your desktop, laptop, or tablet computer and visit the airline’s website. Or you may launch the airline’s mobile app on your smartphone if there is one available.
2. When you are on the airline’s website, at their flight booking page, you will usually be offered three options: One-way, Roundtrip, and Multi-city. Here, you will need to select the Multi-city option.
3. Now, from the drop-down menu, choose your departure cities/airports, destination cities/airports, travel dates, number of passengers, and cabin class. After making your required travel selections, click the Search Flights button. It will look for all available flights and display the results on your screen.
Note: Additionally, you may also use filters to make customizations to your flight selection, such as airlines, airports, number of layovers, etc. Most airline carriers will limit the legs (for example, up to 6 legs) of your journey. So, you will need to check with the airline you’re making reservations from.
4. Once you have found your desired multi-city flight, select the flight and follow the booking instructions that appear on your screen.
5. When you have finished completing the multi-city flight booking process, you will receive a confirmation e-mail and text message on your phone. The confirmation e-mail will contain your flight’s confirmation code, itinerary, and other important details. In addition, your e-ticket will also be sent to you via e-mail.
Alternatively, you can also book multi-city flights for your trip either at the airport or through a travel agency. However, the procedure may differ from the online booking steps given above.
Purchasing an open-jaw flight ticket is both inexpensive and flexible. This is one round-trip option that will allow you to visit several places before you fly back home.