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Weird Airline Routes = Savings

Weird airlines routes can save you big money. Checking individual airline sites only—instead of ones that compare airfares like Priceline and Travelocity—you may not think of these unexpected choices.

To glimpse some of what's available, take a quiz –

The quiz

What weird airline routes below exist? Hint: Not all of them.

Quiz rules

Good luck! Answers below.


  1. Aerolineas Argentinas:  Auckland > Sydney
  2. AeroMexico: Monterrey (MX) > Tokyo        
  3. AeroMexico:  Shanghai > Tijuana
  4. Air China: Houston > Panama City
  5. Air New Zealand:  London > Los Angeles
  6. Alaska Airlines: Charleston (SC) > Seattle
  7. Alaska Airlines:  Los Angeles > Washington, DC
  8. Alaska Airlines:  Palm Springs > San Francisco
  9. British Airways:  Singapore > Sydney
  10. Cathay Pacific:  New York > Vancouver
  11. Condor (Germany): Frankfurt - Whitehorse, Yukon, Canada
  12. Delta:  Bangkok > Tokyo
  13. Ethiopian Airlines: Dublin > Los Angeles
  14. Emirates:  Christchurch (NZ) > Sydney
  15. Garuda Indonesia:  Amsterdam > London
  16. Hainan Airlines:  Beijing > San Jose (CA)
  17. Kenya Airways:  Bangkok > Hong Kong
  18. Kuwait Airways: London > New York City
  19. LAN (Chile):  Auckland > Sydney
  20. Philippine Airlines: New York > Vancouver
  21. Royal Jordanian:  Bangkok  > Hong Kong
  22. Singapore Airlines:  Frankfurt > Newark
  23. Southwest Airlines:  Austin > Toronto
  24. Southwest Airlines: Baltimore > Halifax
  25. SriLankan:  Bangkok > Hong Kong
  26. United Airlines: Newark > Newcastle (UK)

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If you answered of all of the above—yes, even that Air China flight Houston to Panama City, that Condor nonstop flight from Germany to Whitehorse (population some 25,000), and that nonstop Shanghai to Tijuana—except for the two fake Southwest routes, you are correct!

Video: Landing in  Shanghai from Tijuana

Not only did I save a lot flying Emirates Christchurch to Sydney, I received simply outstanding Emirates service.

Aerolineas Argentinas realizes that few people know that it flies seasonably between Australia and New Zealand. Thus, it attracts word of mouth with its super low fares.

Comments on the quiz? Complaints? Bragging that you aced it? Tweet me at


Historic Weird

Larger planes that need more passengers to justify service, as well as ones that can now fly longer distances nonstop, have changed airline economics.

During 1970 before it 747’d, Qantas served the following—You won’t likely see it serving these again:

During apartheid, South African Airways flights became impossible over most countries in Africa and Middle East. Hence its former service Athens to Lisbon. Taking off from Lisbon the airline could then fly all those Greek passengers over the Atlantic to South Africa.

I’ve flown some exotic airline routes that no longer exist:

Some other unusual routes that once operated include

*Qantas, I believe, still retains rights to fly this route. It has been doing so periodically. I once took it and again saved money, with excellent service.

In recent years, Delta has aggressively initiated new destinations such as Atlanta to Manaus, Fortaleza, and Recife (all in Brazil), and, as with these, abandoned them if demand wasn’t there.

Use weird airline routes when you can. You will often receive weird route prices!