Login Now to remove this and all advertisements (GOLD and SILVER members)
Not a member? Register Now for free

Best airlines BNE - > LHR for unaccompanied minors?

Status
Not open for further replies.

greenfish

Active Member
Joined
Jun 8, 2011
Messages
943
Points
290
I know there have been some old threads on this (or similar) but I'm interested in any recent UM experiences on long-haul flights.

I need to send two kids (14 and 8 at time of travel) to the UK from BNE, ideally one stop.

Kids are PS with QF, but am open to all / any options as the grandparents are paying and are cost sensitive.

Thanks!
 

Princess Fiona

Enthusiast
Moderator
Joined
May 22, 2009
Messages
10,339
Points
1,530
Qantas
Platinum 1
Not quite what you're looking for but here goes.
My 9 and 11 yr old girls flew to and from the UK with QF as UM in Sep/Oct 14' and the entire process seemed very thorough. I was on the same aircraft on the outbound but in a different cabin. They received their tags to wear at the MEL Flounge and at all stages of the journey they were looked after very well. One of the FA's they had was on my solo return flight and remembered them and she provided great support to them throughout. Based on this experience I would have no hesitation sending them on QF again.
 

greenfish

Active Member
Joined
Jun 8, 2011
Messages
943
Points
290
Not quite what you're looking for but here goes.
My 9 and 11 yr old girls flew to and from the UK with QF as UM in Sep/Oct 14' and the entire process seemed very thorough. I was on the same aircraft on the outbound but in a different cabin. They received their tags to wear at the MEL Flounge and at all stages of the journey they were looked after very well. One of the FA's they had was on my solo return flight and remembered them and she provided great support to them throughout. Based on this experience I would have no hesitation sending them on QF again.

Thanks PF. It's good to know they're thorough. My main concern with QF is the need to transit SYD / MEL which adds an extra stop and extends the trip by a few hours, so I'm casting a wider net.

MH is cheapest. BA looked OK until i worked out they'd change USD150 in each direction for each UM and I'd need to get them to Sydney. SQ look good (the kids have transitted SIN often) but expensive.
 

TheRealTMA

Senior Member
Joined
Jul 13, 2012
Messages
5,764
Points
1,320
Qantas
Platinum
FYI: passing through through DXB recently we passed a very attractive Unaccompanied Minours Lounge - seemed to be a supervised lounge with light entertainment for children.
 

MEL_Traveller

Enthusiast
Joined
Apr 27, 2005
Messages
21,772
Points
1,815
Thanks PF. It's good to know they're thorough. My main concern with QF is the need to transit SYD / MEL which adds an extra stop and extends the trip by a few hours, so I'm casting a wider net.

MH is cheapest. BA looked OK until i worked out they'd change USD150 in each direction for each UM and I'd need to get them to Sydney. SQ look good (the kids have transitted SIN often) but expensive.

My vote would be for SQ. Good airline. Good transit airport in Singapore. Good entertainment on board to keep the kids occupied. Multiple services in case things 'go wrong' at any point. If they miss one flight, there's another a few hours later. Cathay might also be a good option.

MH - I'm not a great fan of KUL airport for transfers, plus I haven't seen any recent statements indicating a change in attitude to safety. QF would be good, but as you say, a transit via SYD and what if they miss a connection somewhere due to a late flight? The next flight is 24 hours away, and as per the QF customer charter, passengers will be accommodated on the 'next QF service'. Do you want to wait that long with the children unaccompanied?
 
Get paid up to 25% in real cash from your everyday purchases from leading companies such as Virgin Australia, Booking.com, Woolworths, Coles, Apple, Microsoft and much more. Free to join and no catches!

Recommended by the Australian Frequent Flyer

greenfish

Active Member
Joined
Jun 8, 2011
Messages
943
Points
290
Thanks MEL_Traveller, I'd not thought through the consequences of QF's one flight a day. So I think that, together with the domestic stopover requirement strikes out QF.

I haven't been through KUL for over 20 years (long enough ago that it was "a relief" to discover the disabled toilets were conventional flush toilets vs the standard squat toilets elsewhere in the terminal), but I'm struggling to summon enthusiasm for MH.

EY also have the one flight a day problem from BNE. Chinese carriers generally a complete unknown and way too scary at this point.

So the remaining options:

EK: 2 flights a day but one via SIN. No useful SCs unless I can use the UM service with a QF codeshare ticket.
CX: 2 flights a day but one with a CNS stopover. Limited SC earn and cheaper tickets sometimes zero earn. Cathay surcharge per segment for UMs (64USD x 4 per child)
SQ: 3 flights a day. Flexi tickets have very good VA SC earn together with VA family pooling. Kids know SIN airport quite well (though they'll miss the QF SIN lounge :) )

SQ looks the best option at the moment.
 

mannej

Senior Member
Joined
Mar 16, 2009
Messages
9,833
Points
980
MH - I'm not a great fan of KUL airport for transfers, plus I haven't seen any recent statements indicating a change in attitude to safety

I'll put it out there, but it's a bit hard to take that seriously when you are advocating this advice, yet fly AI who a) could have easily been shot down instead of MH17 B) have had a high number of safety mishaps that could have easily ended differently coupled with the poor regulatory environment in India.

As for KUL as a transfer point, although not SIN isn't that bad of an airport IME. With regards to the number of flights that QF have a day, it may be worth checking to see if QF (or any other airline for that sake) will utilise other airlines if needed should they need to cancel their only flight a day to a certain destination.
 
Last edited:

MEL_Traveller

Enthusiast
Joined
Apr 27, 2005
Messages
21,772
Points
1,815
I'll put it out there, but it's a bit hard to take that seriously when you are advocating this advice, yet fly AI who a) could have easily been shot down instead of MH17 B) have had a high number of safety mishaps that could have easily ended differently coupled with the poor regulatory environment in India.

As for KUL as a transfer point, although not SIN isn't that bad of an airport IME. With regards to the number of flights that QF have a day, it may be worth checking to see if QF (or any other airline for that sake) will utilise other airlines if needed should they need to cancel their only flight a day to a certain destination.

According to airlineratings Air India has a rating of 6/7. MH has 5/7. The last accident involving fatalities with air india was back in 1985. 30 years ago. MH as far as I'm aware has not changed it's position that airlines such as itself should be able to focus on comfort and food rather than the safety of the air corridors they fly through. (Those are the words of the MH Commercial Director.) MH's view on military intelligence? That is is an 'oxymoron'.

It's not the tragic events which have deterred me from flying MH, it is the continued reluctance by them to indicate they will take any future responsibility for the safety of the routes they fly.

Airlineratings link is here for Air India: Air India Review & Safety Ratings | AirlineRatings.com

Air India accidents? here as a link with the info at the end: Air India - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

As for QF vs other airlines... some such as CX and SQ have multiple (up to quadruple) daily flights. If one is cancelled, you fly on another a few hours later.
 

greenfish

Active Member
Joined
Jun 8, 2011
Messages
943
Points
290
.

As for KUL as a transfer point, although not SIN isn't that bad of an airport IME. With regards to the number of flights that QF have a day, it may be worth checking to see if QF (or any other airline for that sake) will utilise other airlines if needed should they need to cancel their only flight a day to a certain destination.

I'd be interested if anyone has experienced a UM being placed on a different carrier in the event of delays; I suspect it wouldn't be commonplace as it would be problematic given the duty of care the original carrier has accepted by carrying the UM(s).

Personally, if this was a non-stop flight, I wouldn't be concerned, as the parent / grandparent could look after the child in the event of delays. With stopover(s) I'm far happier knowing that the children could be seamlessly placed onto a later flight with the same carrier (and thanks again MEL_Traveller for pointing this potential issue out). I suppose with QF they've effectively got two flights a day given that the kids could route via MEL or SYD, but I'd still prefer to skip the unwanted stopover if possible.

While researching this question, I found a reference to a BA UM where the UM was looked after overnight by BA in preference to transferring onto a different carrier.

Interestingly, I would fly MH, but when i asked my kids (who are avid consumers of Aircrash Investigation), they both felt uncomfortable (though they'd almost certainly fly MH if the choice was MH or stay home).
 
Joined
Jul 10, 2007
Messages
368
Points
230
The last thing on my mind when sending UMs to the other side of the world would be SCs and points. The major factor in choosing a carrier is what happens if something goes wrong. I recently sent one of my daughters to the UK and back and wasn't comfortable with the prospect of her being stuck in Dubai overnight if there was an issue with Qantas; she went BA because my wife's cousin lives in Singapore and would have been the bail out option in the unlikely event of a problem. If that option hadn't existed I would have looked at carriers that had multiple flights per day, to reduce the chances of an unplanned stopover.
 

williamsf1

Established Member
Joined
Jun 1, 2010
Messages
1,189
Points
10
another option could be EY .... from mid this year they will be 1 stop to LON from BNE and the 787 service... and they also have the on-board nanny service available to look after the kids
 

cgichard

Member
Joined
Feb 17, 2007
Messages
477
Points
230
another option could be EY .... from mid this year they will be 1 stop to LON from BNE and the 787 service... and they also have the on-board nanny service available to look after the kids

Hmm . . . After reading this threadEtihad = Rubbish for families - Air Travel - Travel I wouldn't send UMs on EY. No children's meals unless specially booked and nothing else offered. Nannies found to be useless.
 

greenfish

Active Member
Joined
Jun 8, 2011
Messages
943
Points
290
Hmm . . . After reading this threadEtihad = Rubbish for families - Air Travel - Travel I wouldn't send UMs on EY. No children's meals unless specially booked and nothing else offered. Nannies found to be useless.

I spotted that thread on whirlpool. As far as I'm aware you always have to explicitly book children's meals no matter which airline (I've forgotten once or twice in the past). Interesting that the skynannies seem like a bit of advertising puffery.

But EY is out, only one flight a day ex BNE. I've heard bad things about AUH as an airport too.
 

greenfish

Active Member
Joined
Jun 8, 2011
Messages
943
Points
290
The last thing on my mind when sending UMs to the other side of the world would be SCs and points. The major factor in choosing a carrier is what happens if something goes wrong. I recently sent one of my daughters to the UK and back and wasn't comfortable with the prospect of her being stuck in Dubai overnight if there was an issue with Qantas; she went BA because my wife's cousin lives in Singapore and would have been the bail out option in the unlikely event of a problem. If that option hadn't existed I would have looked at carriers that had multiple flights per day, to reduce the chances of an unplanned stopover.

Safety first - hence why I've chosen SQ, the most expensive, and for our Oneworld household, the least useful SCs. They have the highest flight frequency, the closest stopover point and the kids know SIN well.

But of course, when there are several similar options (e.g. MH, CX, maybe EK) in terms of flight frequency, then I'll look at secondary safety factors (children comfortable with MH?, transit point service) and finally SCs.

BA are out as they lack flight frequency to Australia and they don't service BNE at all.
 

williamsf1

Established Member
Joined
Jun 1, 2010
Messages
1,189
Points
10
I spotted that thread on whirlpool. As far as I'm aware you always have to explicitly book children's meals no matter which airline (I've forgotten once or twice in the past). Interesting that the skynannies seem like a bit of advertising puffery.

But EY is out, only one flight a day ex BNE. I've heard bad things about AUH as an airport too.
I have just had a read of it and sounds like a unlucky rant .... travelling with 3 kids under 5 is different to the OP who will have 2 older kids UM... as I mentioned .... EY will have a new 787 operating on that service .. so all of the product issues ( seating and IFE) will be better ...

As for AUH airport .... The OP's kids will be transferring ..... I did this last weekend SAO AUH SYD and it was one of the quickest transfers I have had for a long time in any airport ... and yes .. I was in the middle of all the delays last weekend with the weather in AUH .
 

greenfish

Active Member
Joined
Jun 8, 2011
Messages
943
Points
290
I have just had a read of it and sounds like a unlucky rant .... travelling with 3 kids under 5 is different to the OP who will have 2 older kids UM... as I mentioned .... EY will have a new 787 operating on that service .. so all of the product issues ( seating and IFE) will be better ...

As for AUH airport .... The OP's kids will be transferring ..... I did this last weekend SAO AUH SYD and it was one of the quickest transfers I have had for a long time in any airport ... and yes .. I was in the middle of all the delays last weekend with the weather in AUH .

I agree, it was a definite rant. However EY upset a very good friend of mine by not holding the plane when he and his family were connecting from AKL (and he got to the international departure gate before they pushed back) - meaning a days unwanted stay in BNE. I guess highlighting the risk of a once a day service for UMs.

A bit OT, but for me, the 787 isn't an improvement for the UMs. The A330 / A340 have a 2+4+2 layout meaning the kids may not need to sit next to a stranger. The 3+3+3 787 seating removes this option. This isn't a rant about stranger danger, but a general observation that the kids don't feel comfortable sitting next to strangers even when we're flying as a family.
 

burmans

Senior Member
Joined
Feb 21, 2006
Messages
6,970
Points
850
MH's view on military intelligence? That is is an 'oxymoron'.
Hardly the first to take that particular view, and in some cases justifiably. Who can forget Iraq and WMD. Ok, actually plenty of people would like to pretend it didn't happen, but some have better memories.
 

Sprucegoose

Senior Member
Joined
Aug 20, 2003
Messages
6,849
Points
770
I agree, it was a definite rant. However EY upset a very good friend of mine by not holding the plane when he and his family were connecting from AKL (and he got to the international departure gate before they pushed back) - meaning a days unwanted stay in BNE. I guess highlighting the risk of a once a day service for UMs.

A bit OT, but for me, the 787 isn't an improvement for the UMs. The A330 / A340 have a 2+4+2 layout meaning the kids may not need to sit next to a stranger. The 3+3+3 787 seating removes this option. This isn't a rant about stranger danger, but a general observation that the kids don't feel comfortable sitting next to strangers even when we're flying as a family.

But the 3+3 also gives two kids a spare seat. You would need to check EF a few days beforehand if that was doable obviously. I have had a man sit next to my UM on a PER flight once that I was less than impressed with. He had an obesity issue apparently. QF were curt with me when I called them on it with a response that provide this as a service only, meaning no G'tees.
 

greenfish

Active Member
Joined
Jun 8, 2011
Messages
943
Points
290
But the 3+3 also gives two kids a spare seat. You would need to check EF a few days beforehand if that was doable obviously. I have had a man sit next to my UM on a PER flight once that I was less than impressed with. He had an obesity issue apparently. QF were curt with me when I called them on it with a response that provide this as a service only, meaning no G'tees.

I think your comments support my 2+4+2 argument. So much less chance of having anyone sitting next to the kids. And at 8 and 15, they don't need a spare seat.

We all know it is a gamble counting on an empty seat - particularly as my kids will be flying during the school holidays when loads are high. It reminds me of a flight last year where I tried to use the platinum shadow and spaced by eldest with a spare seat from me. Of course, someone was allocated that seat so we both had strangers next to us for the whole flight DXB-MEL. The joys of trying to be too clever :)
 

markis10

Veteran Member
Joined
Nov 25, 2004
Messages
30,449
Points
10
I agree, it was a definite rant. However EY upset a very good friend of mine by not holding the plane when he and his family were connecting from AKL (and he got to the international departure gate before they pushed back) - meaning a days unwanted stay in BNE. I guess highlighting the risk of a once a day service for UMs.

A bit OT, but for me, the 787 isn't an improvement for the UMs. The A330 / A340 have a 2+4+2 layout meaning the kids may not need to sit next to a stranger. The 3+3+3 787 seating removes this option. This isn't a rant about stranger danger, but a general observation that the kids don't feel comfortable sitting next to strangers even when we're flying as a family.

Did a few sectors with EY down the back of the bus this time last year and was very impressed with how they treated children, I would put markis10jr on them with no concerns. Another concern is the various charges airlines now make for the UM service, QF is $90 per flight.
 
Status
Not open for further replies.

Community Statistics

Threads
86,580
Messages
2,098,898
Members
53,899
Latest member
Razzle7153
Top