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AA Challenge from BNE

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futaris

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Next year (in April), I'm planning on flying to Europe from Asia with GF (Gulf Air) , which is now a partner with AA. I'd like to earn bonus status, if possible.

However, I don't have any status with AA. What is the cheapest way to earn some status with AA before April?

If I sign up for the gold challenge now, can I earn Qpoints on non-AA metal?

My understanding is that I only need 5000 QPoints for gold, or 10000 for plat.

Can anyone suggest a quick/cheap flight that will get me enough QPoints? Preferably return from BNE, SYD, or similar...
 

Kiwi Flyer

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I dont think you'll earn status miles/points flying Gulf and crediting to AAdvantage - only redeemable miles. (Like flying US Airways and crediting to QFF.)
 

simongr

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Hi - I assume youhavent had chance to read the sticky about challeneges etc.?

You need to sign up NOW for challenge if you are planning to fly on non-AA metal in 2007 and complete the challenge then. The rules are changing so that any challenges started after 1 Jan 2007 can only be completed on AA metal.

Out of interest - what do you want status for on AA before your europe trip? If you arent going to fly over 25k miles before the end of 2007 then your status will go in March 2008. if you are going to fly over that in the year then you will get status for 2009.

There isnt that much benefit from Gold as that is basically QF Silver - which does not get you much (business class check in and 25% status bonus is about it I think).
 

futaris

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Actually, I don't think flights on Gulf Air earn status bonuses. :(

At least they don't mention it here... In any case access to the OW lounge would be good, especially as I'm planning on flying back on a QF award.
 

simongr

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You would need to be AA EXP (equivalent to QF Platinum) to be able to use the OW lounge when not flying OW - and that's not easy - 100K qpoints and no challenge.
 

futaris

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I've read the sticky about challenges in '07 needing to be on AA. I'm trying to figure out whether Qantas Club Membership is worth it, or if an AA challenge is a better deal. Unfortunately, I didn't realise AA Gold = oneworld Ruby (no Lounge Access).

I'm also trying to use up the points that I have in QFF, so I'll be flying back on OW (QF or BA I guess).

I guess I really only want status for the equivalent of OW Lounge Access (when flying OW), which is better than QC especially in Europe, no?

So I'd need 10,000 QPoints for lounge access... A return in discount-economy to USA, should cover that no?
 
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simongr

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You can pay for lounge access at a lot of airports - probably quite a bit cheaper than a return flight to the US...
 

serfty

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simongr said:
You would need to be AA EXP (equivalent to QF Platinum) to be able to use the OW lounge when not flying OW - and that's not easy - 100K qpoints and no challenge.
No, strictly you need to be QF WP to use QP's when not flying oneWORLD.

oneWORLD Emeralds/Sapphires do not generally have access to oneWORLD Lounges etc. unless they are flying oneWORLD .
 

serfty

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futaris said:
... So I'd 10,000 QPoints for lounge access... A return in discount-economy to USA, should cover that no?
It would be less expensive to join the QP. This gives you access to lounges around the world when flying QF/BA/AA.
 

futaris

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I found Priority Pass which is paid access to lounges at US$24/pop, plus $100 for signing up.

Initially, I was hoping that I'd get bonuses on Gulf, and that was half of the reason of looking at doing an AA challenge.

But without that, it really isn't worth it.

QP is fairly expensive at AU$750 for two years. And a AA plat challenge would last 1 1/2 years, I think.

SYD-HNL on AA should only be around $1k. A return flight to US is around $1.5k to $2k.

I guess I can just sign up for the AA plat challenge now, and hope that I fly to the states (for work) before Mid March. At least then if I fly QF, the flight is still eligible for AA challenge, right?
 

Maca44

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futaris said:
I'm planning on flying back on a QF award.
As an exercise, you might look at the cost of buying a return tix with Gulf compared with a one way tix to Europe from Asia. Then compare the difference in price to the number of ff points you would need for that return flight. It might work out better/cheaper to get the return tix and use the points at some later stage for a return trip. The cost of a return ticket is usually not that much more expensive to a one way. Just a thought.
 

simongr

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futaris said:
I guess I can just sign up for the AA plat challenge now, and hope that I fly to the states (for work) before Mid March. At least then if I fly QF, the flight is still eligible for AA challenge, right?
I am suggesting that to all my friends. Register now and if it works out great - if not then there is no loss.
 

futaris

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Maca44 said:
As an exercise, you might look at the cost of buying a return tix with Gulf compared with a one way tix to Europe from Asia. Then compare the difference in price to the number of ff points you would need for that return flight. It might work out better/cheaper to get the return tix and use the points at some later stage for a return trip. The cost of a return ticket is usually not that much more expensive to a one way. Just a thought.
Strangely enough a flight on Gulf Air one-way is only around 50% of the return cost, e.g.:

CGK-MCT-LHR (one-way) = AU$558 + AU$60 tax
CGK-MCT-LHR (return) = AU$1015 + AU$260 tax

Besides, I found that QFF points are only useful on long-haul journeys, due to the surcharges for fuel tax. :(

And anyway, I'd need to make my way back to BNE from CGK, if I book return.

I think Gulf are having a sale on business and first class sleepers too (from SYD), but it's a bit out of my price range.
 

futaris

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simongr said:
I am suggesting that to all my friends. Register now and if it works out great - if not then there is no loss.
Agreed. Now when does the AAdvantage Customer Service in the US open/close???

We just contact them on +1 817 799 2500, and give our AA number and register for plat or gold challenge as necessary... NB, you can only do one, right? So, if you fail plat, and registered for plat you don't get gold even if you meet 5000 QPoints.
 

Dave Noble

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futaris said:
Agreed. Now when does the AAdvantage Customer Service in the US open/close???

We just contact them on +1 817 799 2500, and give our AA number and register for plat or gold challenge as necessary... NB, you can only do one, right? So, if you fail plat, and registered for plat you don't get gold even if you meet 5000 QPoints.
They open at 07:00 CST iirc .. not sure of close time

People have done more than 1 challenge. If you fail, just re-register

If you attempt Platinum and fail, then you do not make it, you don't get gold as a 2nd prize

Dave
 

futaris

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Right. This page has opening and closing times.

Open @ 7:30am CT = 11:30pm AEST or 12:30am AEDST
Close @ 9:00pm CT = 1:00pm AEST or 2:00pm AEDST
 

futaris

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Ok. Registered for that. Took all of 2 minutes...

NB, They ask when your first flight is. So if you want to be eligible on QF, BA, etc, make sure you say before the new year. 90 Days from Dec 16. They sent an e-mail confirming this:

· Remember that Challenges are based on points, not miles, and your goal is 10,000 points in the three-month period we discussed. If you’re not sure how you earn points, read on. (That’s why you wanted this email, right?)

· Use American Airlines (of course!) and other elite-qualifying carriers to maximize your earnings. These elite carriers are Aer Lingus, British Airways, Cathay Pacific, Finnair, Iberia, LAN, Qantas and Alaska Airlines (and their eligible affiliates). When you earn miles on AA or on these carriers, you also earn points. Only points count toward your Challenge. (But remember that there are some fares on these carriers that are not eligible to earn miles or points. You can easily check out these rules on Airline Tickets and Airline Reservations from American Airlines | AA.comaadvantage when you select ‘Partners and Mileage Programs’ and then navigate to the particular airline.) And please note: For Challenges that start on January 1, 2007 and later, only points earned on American Airlines, American Eagle and AmericanConnection flights (including AA codeshare flights operated by other carriers) will count toward Challenges.
 

futaris

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Incidentally, something like this in V class (from the AA website) should complete the Plat Challenge for around US$1100...

 

simongr

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Interesting - that is just about the number of qpoints I need for EXP for only $1500... so tempting but not so tempting...

E$Dit

Having search AA for the dates I would need this would be a US$3000 trip... via LAX...
 

Kiwi Flyer

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It would need to be a QF operated flight and not a QF codeshare on JQ operated flight.
 
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