Advice on DONE4 routing...?

Discussion in 'Your Questions' started by UpTheFront, Aug 12, 2007.

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  1. UpTheFront

    UpTheFront Junior Member

    Feb 7, 2005
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    I'm hoping you wonderful wise wizards might be kind enough to take a look at my rough DONE4 itinerary, and to offer your pearls of wisdom... ;)

    I'm leaning towards ex-KHI stedda NRT, simply because I haven't heard any persuasive reason why Japan is worth $600-700 more than Pakistan (I'll be in BKK at the time). But if you've got one, I'd be grateful to hear it.

    My priorities on this trip are, in descending order:
    a) to get from sydney to new york, LA, london & back;
    b) to enjoy some nice J cabins along the way;
    c) to stop over in some cool & interesting places where I wouldn't normally go; and
    d) to get miles & status (pref with AA).

    How do you reckon this routing fits with those goals...?
    KHI-HKG CX
    HKG-MEL QF
    MEL-AKL QF
    AKL-BNE QF
    BNE-CNS QF
    CNS-SYD QF
    SYD-JFK QF
    JFK-YVR CX
    YVR-MEX JL
    MEX-ORD AA
    ORD-LAX AA
    LAX-LHR BA
    LHR-MCT BA
    MCT-AMM RJ
    AMM-DME RJ
    DME-LHR BA
    LHR-NRT BA
    NRT-DEL JL
    DEL-HKG CX
    HKG-KHI CX
    = 59,710 base miles

    Are there any similar routings which would offer better mileage opportunities or involve travel on carriers with a superior J class service? I'd be interested in your thoughts...
     

  2. tuapekastar

    tuapekastar Established Member

    Mar 16, 2005
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    That's quite a routing you have there UpTheFront, which appears to satisfy your needs pretty well. Obviously there are innumerable permuations but you've done pretty well I'd say. The only problem I see at first glance is that I don't think you can earn AA miles flying from the US to UK on BA. So if you wanted to go BA over the Atlantic and still earn to AA, you'd need to do it from Canada or Mexico - if BA offer it- or possibly the Caribbean. Or just fly AA LAX-LHR - again, if they offer it.

    From what I've read here, ticketing these (DONE4s) in other countries can have its difficulties. Don't know how you'd go with Pakistan. And if I'm not mistaken, if you purchase it in a different country to where you commence it, the price is the higher of the two.

    That's just what I recall, I'd doublecheck anything I've said, or get confirmation from someone else!!

    Edit - Oh, and it's not going to get you back to SYD (as in point a)
     
  3. Hawkeye

    Hawkeye Member

    Nov 4, 2006
    392
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    BNE
    I thought YVR-MEX on JL was a bit dubious. But there is indeed a 2-class service operating on Mondays and Thursdays. Thank you for the heads-up!!

    Otherwise, looks a great itinerary.
     
  4. littl_flier

    littl_flier Active Member

    May 1, 2007
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    Brisbane
    Looks like an interesting routing UpTheFront. ;)

    You have skipped ANC though which would be nice if you want to see Alaska. If you take out the MEL-AKL-BNE (which is close to home and can be done reasonably inexpensively anyway) routing, you can pick up some more miles by going MEX-DFW-ANC-ORD.

    Routing could be:

    KHI-HKG-MEL-CNS-SYD-JFK-YVR-MEX-dfw-anc-ORD-LAX-LHR-MCT-AMM-DME-LHR-NRT-DEL-HKG-KHI

    Total: 62,346 miles.

    It really depends on your priorites and whether a key priority is points. If you choose ANC, you head up to the National Park which has some great scenery.

    Just some suggestions to steal some more candy! :p
     
  5. littl_flier

    littl_flier Active Member

    May 1, 2007
    898
    0
    Brisbane
    Don't worry, I had to look up my trust OW timetable too. ;) This actually looks pretty good and means ex. NRT, MEX is only 1 sector, or good for some candy.
     
  6. Keith009

    Keith009 Established Member

    Mar 6, 2005
    4,432
    244
    Brisbane / Sydney
    #6 Keith009, Aug 12, 2007
    Last edited: Aug 12, 2007
    You'd need a visa to enter Pakistan.
    Also, airline offices in NRT have been proven to be adept at issuing xONExs, whereas Pakistan is still relatively unexplored.

    In any case there is an AA GSA in KHI:
    Ticket Sales Center - Pakistan

    And here's a thread on FT about issuing ex-KHI:
    DONEx ex-ISB/KHI? - FlyerTalk Forums

    The extra costs of NRT over KHI can also be justified by the rather thin service into KHI vs the myriad of daily OW flights into NRT. CX only flies into KHI 3 times a week so you might want to try getting an eticket if you're only planning to turnaround, otherwise plan for more than a night's stay in which case your savings on starting ex-KHI would be absorbed by accom costs wouldn't it? ;)
     
  7. straitman

    Moderator

    Apr 27, 2003
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    UpTheFront,

    Call me a pessimist if you like but I look at this from an entirely different perspective. Anything involving Pakistan is off my agenda at the moment due to the rapidly declining stability in the country. It doesn't get the media attention of Afganistan or Iraq but it's certainly off any list I own at present.

    At the very least have a look at the travel adviseries for the area before considering this idea. Is $600 - $700 worth the extra risk involved?

    Not for me!
     
  8. UpTheFront

    UpTheFront Junior Member

    Feb 7, 2005
    22
    0
    Thanks guys. It's a tough call. I think I'm probably gonna have to side with straitman here. I'm a pretty intrepid traveller but the instability in pakistan just makes it so difficult to make reliable long-term plans. Back to the drawing board for now... :oops:
     
  9. simongr

    simongr Enthusiast

    Jul 10, 2006
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    Drawing board? Why the drawing board - why not just exNRT?
     
  10. UpTheFront

    UpTheFront Junior Member

    Feb 7, 2005
    22
    0
    Yeah, I'll definitely go ex-NRT, but that means rejigging the itinerary substantially coz I don't have infinitely flexible options. Mostly it's for arcane scheduling reasons like avoiding flying on my work days, avoiding overnight flights when working the next day, maximising 3-class QF flights (coz I get UGs on QF metal), favoring overnights in cheaper cities like BKK/SIN stedda HKG/NRT, getting into & out of wherever I need to be on the days I need to be there, and so on.

    KHI worked perfectly for my needs. NRT will work, but not as well, and will cost more. The only downside with KHI is that 48-hour layover: who knows what the heck the situation is gonna be in pakistan come december...?

    But then that little intrepid journalist's part of me pipes up and says: I've been to loads of unstable places, Karachi will be fascinating, ten million people (including plenty of westerners) live there without getting blown up, if I'm sensible then statistically it's immensely improbable that I'd encounter any major trouble, and if god forbid the country goes to hell and musharraf can't hang onto the reins then CX will suspend their flights anyway (as they did with CMB) and I'll go from NRT instead.

    Speaking of which... does anyone know what happens if you hold a paid DONE4 and all OW flights to the country of origin get suspended? I assume you'd get a refund, right...? Or would they say you just have to wait until flights resume? Has anyone heard of this happening to someone on these forums when CX suspended its service to CMB...?
     
  11. serfty

    Moderator

    Nov 16, 2004
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  12. NM

    NM
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    Aug 27, 2004
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    The OneWorld Explorer fare is refundable prior to commencement of the journey. So long as you cancel the ticket before you start your fist flight you get a full refund. However, not that some airlines may take many weeks to actually refund your money. Qantas will generally quote 6-8 weeks for the refund, however I had Qantas refund a DONE4 in about 3 weeks.
     
  13. simongr

    simongr Enthusiast

    Jul 10, 2006
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    Interesting NM - I was told after my paid for DONE4 paper ticket had been issued that there was a 10% cancellation fee if I wanted to cancel and rebook (this was when I wanted to skip my SYD-NRT-HKG routing in favour of SYD-HKG).
     
  14. NM

    NM
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    As far as I know, that is only for an Origin in TC1. no penalty for Origin in TC2 or 3.
     
  15. simongr

    simongr Enthusiast

    Jul 10, 2006
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    Blimey - I guess the other consideration was having to cancel all the flights as it was the first int'l segment and not getting back the flights that I wanted... At this point I would have probably preferred a direct flight to HKG with a chance at an F upgrade :(
     
  16. Keith009

    Keith009 Established Member

    Mar 6, 2005
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    My DONE4 was originally booked exCMB (but not issued thank god), and when CX canned CMB they unilaterally shifted me to BKK-HKG flights at the start and end of the itin.

    You can perform a search on the oneworld forum over at FT for what happened to people holding exCMB tix, but essentially it was a pain getting CX to issue FIMs.

    edited to add - opps i didn't see this other page worth of posts when i replied...:oops:
     
  17. Bundy Bear

    Bundy Bear Established Member

    Jul 17, 2004
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    Starting from NRT had been an absolute bargain, that was until the Australian Dollar took a dive.

    THE Australian dollar tonight slipped below the US 80 cent level for the first time in five months tonight after the currency's wildest day of trading in years.

    After the end of local trading, the Australian dollar had fallen to US 79.84 cents at 1825 AEST – its lowest level since March 20.

    At 1700 AEST, the Australian dollar was trading at 80.45 US cents, down sharply from yesterday's close of 82.59 US cents

    RBA: Exchange Rates
    DATES 10 Aug 13 Aug 14 Aug 15 Aug 16 Aug
    US $ 0.8410 0.8485 0.8387 0.8287 0.8057
    YEN 99.180 100.32 98.870 97.110 93.58

    I had been reading the recent DONE4 threads and seriously considered buying a DONE4 from Japan. Now it just got more than 5% dearer.
     
  18. Keith009

    Keith009 Established Member

    Mar 6, 2005
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    Whoa... I was debating whether to make that call to NRT before or after lunch. Saved a good few dollars there as the AUD took a sharp dive a while after the itinerary was ticketed.
     
  19. turtlemichael

    turtlemichael Established Member

    May 24, 2006
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    My DONE4 out of NRT ticketed on June 29, thus beating the surface sector change. :D It was 793K yen and hit my card as $7777. On the current exchange rate (which is see-sawing) the same ticket would cost around $8900 now. Substantially more but still a bargain compared with the price or originating in Australia. Even more of a bargain compared with those ticketing through QF/BA :(
     
  20. UpTheFront

    UpTheFront Junior Member

    Feb 7, 2005
    22
    0
    EUGH! This is SO frustrating. After finally concluding that Karachi probably isn't worth the effort and I should buy it ex-nrt instead, the aussie dollar has crumbled 17% against the yen in the last SIX TRADING DAYS ALONE.

    Exactly four weeks ago, a DONE4 ex-NRT cost $A6,900.

    Six working days ago, it cost $7,170.

    Now it's $8,250-8,350 depending on the time of day. A fourteen-hundred dollar loss in a matter of weeks.

    I'm not sure it's even worth getting a DONE4 at all at that price. I can get a mini-* alliance RTW ex-SYD for $4,929 from Best Flights, or with SIA ex-SYD for $6,119.

    I envy you who bought early!! :evil:

    Karachi looks ever more like a bargain at $A7,100ish... and as for CMB, won't Cathay pleeeeease come back? It’s $6,600ish there!

    Despondent.
     
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