Cheapest Flights To Australia: The ultimate guide to finding your cheapest flights to Australia

So you’re looking for the cheapest flights to Australia?

We understand.

Traveling in Australia is expensive enough so if you could save some money on your flights that would be really pretty sweet.

But here’s the problem:

When it comes to finding the cheapest flights to Australia the internet is full of nonsense telling you to book on a Tuesday exactly 2 months before your intended departure date.

It’s confusing and after reading all this conflicting (and wrong) advice, you’re probably wondering:

How on Earth can I find the cheapest flights to Australia? And even when I find one, how do I know if there isn’t an even cheaper option out there? 

Well, here is a little secret:

There is no secret to finding the cheapest flights to Australia, but there is a method…

In this article, you’ll read exactly what you need to know to find the cheapest flights to Australia without using weird ‘secrets’ that just never seem to work.

If you’re flexible we’ll even show you how you can save 47%  and get to Australia for less than 280 pound.

Cheapest flights to Australia: finding a flight that suits your plans

Let’s take a look:

In general, you have 4 options to fly to Australia:

But before you start asking which options will give you the cheapest flights to Australia, ask yourself what option suits your travel plan.

Below we’ll tell you about the up- and downsides of each option so you can make up your mind. But first:

How should you search for the cheapest flights to Australia?

No matter what kind of flight you’re looking for, we recommend you use Skyscanner.

Skyscanner is the most flexible search engine on the internet and makes it incredibly easy to search for many flights (including the cheapest one).

Want to see how it works?

At first, Skyscanner looks like just another search engine. However, if you know how to use all its unique features you’ll quickly find the best options.

So here we go:

  • Set your ‘from’ to a whole country, in order to include all airports in your country. So instead of searching for a flight from London, search for a flight from the United Kingdom.
  • Set your ‘to’ to the whole country, in this case, Australia. This way Skyscanner will include all cities in Australia, making it easy for you to spot amazing deals. You can even set the destination to ‘everywhere’ which will come in very handy with the ABC-method.
  • Set your departure and return date to the whole month, that way Skyscanner will include all the fares for the whole month instead of just one day. Great if you’re flexible and you don’t care if you fly on Tuesday or Friday.
  • If you’re not even sure about which month you want to go, you can select the cheapest month and Skyscanner will find you the cheapest option within a 12-month period.

Your options for finding the cheapest flights to Australia

Ok let’s dive right into it.

Here are the 4 options for finding the cheapest flights to Australia, including pros and cons.

Option 1: Buy a normal return ticket 

In most cases, this is by far the cheapest option, especially if you use all of Skyscanner’s unique features.

Airlines love selling round-trips to fill up their planes and that’s why return tickets are often a lot cheaper than two one-way tickets.

Therefore, a return flight is most likely the cheapest flight to Australia if you already know the end date of your trip.

However, booking return flights has its downsides as well.

First of all, you can’t change your return date, or only at a hefty fee.

Secondly, with a normal round-trip, you’ll fly into and out of the same city. Not very convenient if you want to travel along Australia’s east coast from Sydney to Cairns.

In that case, you’ll have to book a flight back from Cairns to Sydney which will cost you another 100-200 GBP, depending on the time of year and how long in advance you book this ticket.

  • Advantages:
    Cheap and suitable when you have to be home by a certain date.
  • Disadvantages:
    Little flexibility and not suitable when you don’t know when you’re returning home. On top of this, you’ll need a domestic flight when you’re traveling in one direction.

Curious about the costs of a ticket for you? Find out on Skyscanner!

Option 2: An open jaw ticket

An open jaw ticket is a ticket whereby the first destination is not the same place as where you fly back from. For example when you start in Sydney but you fly home from Cairns.

The benefit of this kind of tickets is that it gives you the freedom to travel in one direction.

Especially when you already know the date that you need, or want, to be back home, an open jaw ticket is an excellent option.

There are several organisations that can help you with booking flexible open-jaw tickets. The benefit of booking your tickets through an organisation is that a professional will help you. Someone who has booked these flights hundreds of times before. Not exactly necessary, but it might give you some comfort.

Another option is finding it yourself through Skyscanner.

Just play around with the dates a little and it doesn’t have to be more expensive than a regular return ticket. And because you’re saving a domestic flight (from Cairns back to Sydney for instance) you’ll be saving money.

  • Advantages:
    You can travel in one direction and don’t need an extra domestic flight at the end of your trip. If you book this through an organisation everything will be taken care of.
  • Disadvantages:
    It is not always cheap, even though organisations would like you to believe otherwise. The maximum validity is one year, meaning that this ticket is not suitable if you’re planning to go for your second-year visa in Australia.

Curious about the costs of an open jaw ticket? Find out on Skyscanner! Play around with the dates to find the cheapest flights. Just like you can see in the screenshot below.

Option 3: One-way ticket to Australia and a one-way ticket back

Single flights are suitable when you’re going to Australia for a long period of time and don’t know when you’ll be back home.

It might not be the cheapest flight to Australia, but it gives you maximum flexibility and that’s worth a lot.

A single ticket to Sydney from most places in Europe will start around 500 GBP and will depend on the time of booking, causing the ticket to be slightly cheaper or more expensive.

A single ticket back home will approximately cost between GBP 500 and GBP 550. The price again depends on the city you’re flying to and back from, which airline you fly with and the time of booking.

You don’t have to be Einstein to notice the following:

Two single tickets are more expensive than a return ticket.

You’ll easily pay a couple hundred bucks extra, however, with this option you stay way more flexible. This means that you don’t have to hurry in order to catch a flight you’ve booked months before.  No, you can stay in certain places as long as you want.

Beforehand this might seem like only a small advantage because you already have some kind of a plan, but you’ll notice soon enough that these plans will change the minute you arrive in Australia.

It’s possible (and likely) that you don’t want to return home just yet, that you’ll delay that college degree with an extra year or you might even fall in love with a local meaning that you never want to return home!

By being flexible and opting for a one-way ticket you keep all your options open. Your journey might feel less of a mission you have to complete. Instead, you can just let it unfold the way you want to.

  • Advantages:
    More flexibility, you keep your options open.
  • Disadvantages:
    More expensive than a regular return ticket.

Curious about the costs of a ticket for you? Find out on Skyscanner!

Option 4: The ABC Method to save 47% on your flight to Australia

Time for the grand finale:

With this simple method, you’ll be able to find the cheapest flights to Australia, but you need to be flexible.

Because instead of booking one ticket, you’ll be combining two or more budget airlines to find the cheapest flight to Australia.

And if you think that flying budget will leave you deprived of food and entertainment on board, think again.

This option will not only help you find the cheapest flights to Australia, it will also help you discover more of our beautiful planet for less money.


The method works by finding two cheap flights to a connecting airport.

So let’s say you’re from the UK and looking for the cheapest flight to Australia. Instead of booking a direct flight to Australia, do this:

  • Step 1: Find the cheapest flight to Asia
    Use Skyscanner’s ‘destination everywhere feature’.In this case we found a flight from London to Singapore for 199 GBP.
  • Step 2: Find the cheapest flight from Asia to Australia
    From Singapore onwards it’s very cheap to fly to Australia. Darwin and Perth on Australia’s west coast are the cheapest, as they are the closest to Singapore. But even an 8-hour flight to Sydney will be amazingly cheap.
  • Step 3: Combine these two tickets
    Make sure that there is (more than) enough time between the two tickets and book them.In this case, instead of paying GBP 531 you’ll pay GBP 199+ GBP 80 = GBP 279.That’s a saving of 47%!

More options for the ABC Method

The possibilities are endless.

You can choose to go from Singapore overland to Malaysia and fly from Kuala Lumpur (Malaysia) to Australia for example.

Or you could fly into Bangkok and travel south towards Malaysia.

Or… well, just bounce all around Asia before you continue.

ABC-method if you’re from the US or Canada

Let’s say you live in New York and would like to visit Sydney.

The cheapest direct flight we’ve found is a pretty shitty one but still $663. It will take you 48 hours and you need two transfers (that you’ll most likely spend in an airport).

Instead, try this.

Find a cheap flight from New York to Hawaii. In this case, we’ve found a very decent one for $311.

Next, find a flight from Hawaii to Sydney. In this case we’ve found a direct flight for $180.

So instead of paying $663 for a shitty flight, you’ll book two separate flights for $491.

That’s a saving of 25%.

What are the disadvantages of the ABC-method?

The ABC-method works for finding the cheapest flights to Australia, however there are some downsides as well.

Firstly, if you book two separate flights and your first flight is delayed, the airline is under no obligation to get you on your connecting flight. In other words: if you miss the second flight, you’ll have to buy a new one.

In order to play it safe it’s best to book at least one night accommodation. In Asian countries these costs are next to nothing, but if you have a stopover in Hawaii it will be a lot more. Same goes for transport to and from the airport.

Secondly, depending on which country you have your stopover in, you might need to arrange a visa.

And lastly, it might take a little longer to get to Australia. However, if you’ve always wanted to see the country where you’re planning the stopover, this is hardly a downside.

Wrapping it all up: How to find the cheapest flights to Australia?

In short:

Finding the cheapest flights to Australia is more a matter of applying methods than knowing about all weird secrets that don’t even work.

Whether you’re looking for a return flight, two one-way tickets or would like to try the ABC-method, this article has shown you how to find the cheapest flights to Australia.

Choose an option that suits you, buy your tickets and start dreaming about your amazing adventure.

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