I live in Tokyo and want to visit both Germany (I'm going to travel to different cities to visit friends, so airport doesn't matter much) and either LA or the bay area this August. Unfortunately for me, I only have 2-3 weeks for both, and it has to be August, even though I would have preferred to fly during a less expensive month.

Now that I spent hours on hipmunk and ita matrix trying to find the best routing for me, I think it's a good idea to ask for some advice :). Tickets for TYO - FRA, LAX - TYO and similar can be found for about $1400 (that's for both tickets), but it's absolutely impossible to find reasonably priced tickets for the Germany - West coast segment. It seems that my best bet is just to buy 2 round trip tickets from Tokyo. Do you see anything I don't? I absolutely wouldn't mind flying any crazy detours if it nets me cheaper tickets.

  • possible duplicate of How can I do a "broad" search for flights?
    – Karlson
    Jun 27, 2014 at 15:52
  • Have you tried Germany to East Coast and then East Coast to West Coast via LCCs? Jun 27, 2014 at 18:44
  • @pnuts, I think I don't understand your question, could you explain?
    – margold
    Jun 28, 2014 at 12:39
  • @Karlson I did a broad search (using around 3 nearby airports for each of my destinations), using ITA Matrix. The problem is that it doesn't work well once you widen your search to dozens nearby airports (as I can for Germany), because these search engines can't afford to examine all possibilities anymore and actually give you worse fares. My hope was that somebody knows of a cheap route (say, connecting an unimportant German airport to an unimportant US airport from where I can continue with an LCC) from experience.
    – margold
    Jun 28, 2014 at 12:47

1 Answer 1


Have you tried using the Round The World fares offered by the alliances? Both SkyTeam and Star Alliance (probably One World too) offer Round The World fare calculators. You simply input your stops and they let you know routing and fare. You would need to add one more stopover, as most RTW fares require a minimum of three stops (maybe spend a night in NYC or ??).

You can also try the multi-city option on Fare Search engines, though that often gives you some convoluted routings.

  • 1
    RTW flights are generally not a good deal when only 2 stops are required, especially when traveling in economy. It's only once you build in multiple stops that they (sometimes) become a good option financially.
    – Doc
    Jun 28, 2014 at 0:49
  • Yes, RTW tickets start at around $3500, so not worth it in this case.
    – margold
    Jun 28, 2014 at 12:37

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