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If you are a cost-conscious traveller, you will be one of those looking at the cheapest routes to get to your destination, and a sure way to save on your dirhams is to compare the price of one-way versus a round trip ticket.

Airlines like to see their seats booked in advance, and therefore, as a general practice, they price their round-trip tickets better than just one-way fares.

The savings that passengers can make, however, can be substantial.

Buying your return ticket also makes sense and adds to savings if you are sure of your return date, but as busy businessmen and even-busier parents know, it is not always set in stone.

On top of it, most airlines price their tickets cheaper for fixed dates and more expensive for those that offer the flexibility to change travel dates.

So, while standalone return tickets will almost always work out to be cheaper in case of fixed-date tickets, factoring in the price of higher, flexi-tickets or costs associated with a change in date may change the equation.

There can also be exceptional instances when a return ticket works out to be more expensive; so it’s best to always compare the two before booking one that makes better sense.
One-way and round trip ticket prices on UAE airlines

We compared ticket prices on four UAE-based airlines on different routes.

Emirates : Dubai to London return

We checked the price of a return economy class ticket from Dubai to London. Outbound travel is on July 1, and inbound is on the 30th of the same month. The lowest available price combination for these selected dates totaled to Dh5,470.

On the other hand, when we booked one-way tickets, the price shot up.

The cheapest one-way fare from Dubai to London on July 1 costs Dh3,805 and the ticket back to Dubai on the 30th of July costed GBP445, which is approximately Dh2,326.82.

That’s a total of Dh6,131.82. A return ticket in comparison works out to be cheaper by Dh661.82 – or savings of a tad more than 12 per cent.

The prices include airfare, taxes, fees and carrier-imposed charges for 1 passenger.

Etihad : Abu Dhabi to New Delhi return

Next, we checked the price of a return ticket versus one way from Abu Dhabi to New Delhi on Etihad Airways. The travel dates are: departure on August 15 and return on the 31st of August. A return ticket for the said dates costs Dh1,329.

For one-way, the outbound trip on August 15 will cost Dh494 and the departure fare will be INR25535, which is approximately Dh1,412.70 (note that this one-way fare in itself is more than the return fare). The total works out to Dh1,906.7, making this choice costlier by Dh577.7 – or more than 43 per cent.