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You will be flying at the most expensive time of year. Lowest fares are usually not available this far in advance and they *should* come down some, no guarantees. For better airfare advice, try the TripAdvisor air travel forum: tripadvisor.com/ShowForum-g1-i10702-Air_Trav…
I would pay extra to fly all the way to Des Moines from whatever transatlantic gateway you use, but it is remotely possible that you could save a few dollars by taking the bus (I think you say coach) after landing in Chicago.
Having lived in Iowa and flown in/out of Des Moines many times, I can tell you that it is a rather expensive airport in general. Not many airlines service this location and what they do fly in/out of there is largely the 54 passenger (or smaller) commuter planes.
You could also consider flying into Minneapolis and renting a car to drive down from there. I don't know that I would want to do it or if you'd save enough money on the flights to offset the rental car expense.
So bottom line, I suppose I'm with Hoogo and would suggest just biting the bullet and paying whatever it costs to fly into your destination city (Des Moines).
I lived in Des Moines for a while and was sometimes able to find cheaper flights in and out of Kansas City, Missouri; Omaha, Nebraska: and Moline, Illinois. You'd still have a drive, but those are much closer than Minnespolis or Chicago (not even an option IMO unless you want to spend some time there as well).Edited: 24 January 2013, 20:45
One option to look at would be flying round trip into Chicago and then seeing if a roundtrip to DSM on Southwest would net a savings. The caveat is that Southwest flies out of Midway not Ohare.
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