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I'm off to the U.S. next month from the UK and have already booked my return flight home for October 2014. Now I'm trying to book my flight from the UK to the U.S, as it works out way cheaper to book another return flight than just a one-way ticket. Can I book the return flight & use it next year as part of a second trip?

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    It is not quite clear what your intentions are, would it be possible to explain the segments you would be flying? – Max Wyss Aug 17 '14 at 11:15
  • i THINK the answer is simply "yes!" (How the heck are you travelling TO the usa, the first time? on a yacht or something?) – Fattie Aug 17 '14 at 14:21
  • @JoeBlow that's what he's booking - the trip to the US (he already booked the flight back) and wants to make it into a new return ticket for a future trip. – Mark Mayo Aug 17 '14 at 14:42
  • Weird isn't it?! :) The bottom line then is "sure" as Mark explains below – Fattie Aug 17 '14 at 15:05
  • You will need to show the immigration officer the first (return) ticket. As long a UK->US single ticket won't cost a lot than the money you are saving, I'd say you are really taking the advantage of it. – Ayesh K Aug 17 '14 at 20:22
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Yes, there's nothing stopping you.

From my understanding of the question, you have a need for:

  • flight to the US (A)
  • flight back (B) - already booked
  • and are considering (C) another flight back to be combined with A to make a return ticket, which you'll use at a later date.

All your tickets are just that - tickets for flights on day X, Y or Z. If you take it or not, the airline is getting your money. The only issue with return flights is if you don't take the first leg there, they'll usually cancel your return ticket. However as long as you take all these flights, you can.

And then you're wanting to book a new ticket (D) to the US next year, to be used BEFORE C? No problem, but you may want to book a flexible return for C, just in case you want to change the date. Also some return tickets must be within a year, so the dates might have some boundaries for you, which you'll find when you come to book. This is one time a travel agent may be of use to ensure you don't make any mistakes.

But yes, it is a valid option.

  • choosing flexible is good advice in this case – Fattie Aug 17 '14 at 15:06
  • Thanks Mark. The return flight was cheap so I booked it thinking I would be able to get a cheap flight from the UK to the U.S but It's actually cheaper to book an outbound & return flight than just a single one way flight. So I will basically have 2 return flights, but I can book the 2nd return flight for next year so I can go again. I was just wondering if customs may flag it up & have a problem with it? I can show them my 1st return flight. My intention is to only stay for about 2 weeks, not a year as I know the 90 day visa rule. – Darren Shotton Aug 17 '14 at 15:07
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Your first obstacle with a far future return date will be the airline having to make sure your visa/wiaver status allows you to stay that long in the USA. Airlines are mandated to check that aspect and required to deny boarding if you don't qualify.

Why not cancel the one way return ticket and apply its value towards your next trip and simply buy the cheaper round trip ticket for this year.

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