By Ilona Kauremszky

Q: We have just returned from a five-week trip to Australia. My wife will be flying back to be with our daughter who is expecting her first baby. She'll be travelling alone. Could you suggest the most direct and possibly cheapest fare?

A: Generally airfare prices are contingent on the season, the day of the week for the departure, the chosen city of departure and the preferred city for arrival. So, many times travelers, who wish to save some cash on air tickets, decide to travel off-season leaving from a major hub like Toronto midweek as opposed to the weekend when prices tend to be higher.

Author Marybeth Bond of "Gutsy Women: More Travel Tips and Wisdom for the Road," writes, "Most low fares also require you to stay over at least one Saturday night, so choose your travel days wisely," and she adds, "Most low fare tickets must be purchased at least 14 days before travel."

Once you've nailed down such details, you can contact an Aussie specialist who can provide you with more details on pricing. One rep from the Australian Tourist Commission recently reported seeing a seat sale to Sydney for about $1,800. Call 1-800-333-0139 or visit to find the Aussie specialist travel agent nearest you.


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