Doing the South Pacific islands without backtracking

Old Apr 26, 18, 12:28 pm
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Doing the South Pacific islands without backtracking

I've never been a fan of backtracking (especially after spending lengthy periods of time in places like BGI and ANU without checking the stopovers properly), but given the scarcity of flights in the South Pacific, it makes me wonder if something like this would be feasible:

Great Circle Mapper

Any thoughts?
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Old Apr 26, 18, 3:19 pm
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Originally Posted by ilcannone View Post
I've never been a fan of backtracking (especially after spending lengthy periods of time in places like BGI and ANU without checking the stopovers properly), but given the scarcity of flights in the South Pacific, it makes me wonder if something like this would be feasible:

Great Circle Mapper
This type of question has been asked before
Probably not feasible. Have you checked if their are flights (or boats) between these places? Look at the airport entries on Wikipedia.

Some places may have flights to/from a bigger island like Fiji. Or only flights to Australia/NZ. The locals (if they have the money) & visitors tend to go to Fiji, Aust and/or NZ.

Getting a visa for Naru can be hard.
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Old Apr 27, 18, 3:50 am
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Easily done if you have a spare $1m. Charter plane is the only way for most of your routes.
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Old Apr 28, 18, 1:03 am
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Of course I consulted Wikipedia before posting, hence the map. The problem is that Wikipedia may say one route on one airline in one direction exists, but the reverse may not be true, so it's a bit difficult to distinguish what is true or not.

I'm also fully aware about the Nauru visa, but frankly, I'm somewhat more concerned about Kiribati, Papua New Guinea and Solomon Islands! (well, for my other half, not myself).
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Old Apr 28, 18, 5:23 pm
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Maybe finish it off with something like TPE-GUM-HNL
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Old Apr 28, 18, 11:14 pm
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The routes look plausible to me. I haven't checked in any detail.

Some only operate 1 or 2 times a week, so may not work well without a lengthy stopover. I suspect it will be quicker replacing some of it with out and back flights from either NAN/SUV or AKL.

Note there are other South Pacific countries with air service that you haven't included (e.g. Niue and Cook Islands), and territories (e.g. Tahiti). Plus of course others without air service (e.g. Tokelau).
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Old Apr 29, 18, 12:50 am
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Originally Posted by Blackadder1402 View Post
Maybe finish it off with something like TPE-GUM-HNL
Good idea but I'm purposely avoiding the US when possible.
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Old Apr 29, 18, 12:51 am
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Originally Posted by Kiwi Flyer View Post
The routes look plausible to me. I haven't checked in any detail.

Some only operate 1 or 2 times a week, so may not work well without a lengthy stopover. I suspect it will be quicker replacing some of it with out and back flights from either NAN/SUV or AKL.

Note there are other South Pacific countries with air service that you haven't included (e.g. Niue and Cook Islands), and territories (e.g. Tahiti). Plus of course others without air service (e.g. Tokelau).
I deliberately haven't included them. Although if going to/through them makes life easier/quicker/cheaper then sure why not, otherwise that wouldn't be my objective.
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Old Apr 29, 18, 6:48 am
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It seems almost certainly impossible (surely not all these routes exist, even if they once did), but you can definitely reduce backtracking with careful research.

POM and NAN are useful hubs. GUM, HNL or even PPG can also be handy options, if you didn't want to avoid the USA.

One gem I found (that you seem to miss in your route!) was Talofa Airways, they fly FGI-TBU (That is Apia CITY airport to Tonga). Of course, you won't find anything searching APW-TBU, even though APW would appear to be the obvious choice for an international itinerary.

The South Pacific is like that, schedules and routes can be hard to research, with sporadic schedules, and can cease without warning. And some islands will pretty much only ever have one flight servicing them. Backtracking for those islands is of course the only choice (unless you charter or go by boat).

Please let us know in this thread if you find any interesting obscure routes.
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Last edited by CPMaverick; Apr 29, 18 at 6:54 am
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Old Apr 30, 18, 3:02 am
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Even so, routes like this are (as far as I'm aware) not cheap and require the booking of several one-way or multi-city flights which can often add a premium to an otherwise simpler return trip. Challenge accepted?
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Old Apr 30, 18, 8:18 am
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Originally Posted by Catweazle View Post
Even so, routes like this are (as far as I'm aware) not cheap and require the booking of several one-way or multi-city flights which can often add a premium to an otherwise simpler return trip. Challenge accepted?
Depends on what you mean by cheap. I find the one-way flights on smaller pacific carriers to be fairly reasonable. But one-way flights on major carriers from hubs like AKL, NAN, and HNL (where the sales are priced only in round-trips) they can be expensive. But on the major carriers, mileage awards are an option.
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Old May 18, 18, 8:06 am
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I've been using http://www.kayak.com/direct to find non-stop routes around the South Pacific for this summer. I've been able to bop around a lot of small islands without backtracking or flying 1 stop. But it is hard in this region and some islands had to be scrapped to stick to my rule.

Last edited by TravelinSperry; May 19, 18 at 6:07 am
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Old May 19, 18, 5:20 am
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Originally Posted by TravelinSperry View Post
I've been using www.kayak.com/direct to find non-stop routes around the South Pacific for this summer. I've been able to bop around a lot of small islands without backtracking or flying 1 stop. But it is hard in this region and some islands had to be scrapped to stick to my rule.
Thanks for the link, didn't know that existed. If you found any interesting obscure non-stop options, please share here! Sometimes it is hard to know where to start in this region, so many islands.
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