Had enough of trying to get flights

Discussion in 'Your Questions' started by burlof, Aug 20, 2002.

  1. burlof

    burlof Newbie

    Aug 20, 2002
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    Hello I just dont know what to do anymore! I am so frustrated at trying to get flights and hoping an expert can come along and give me some tips. :roll: This will be long so hopefully I dont bore anyone but I'd like to explain ...

    I have approx 38,000 Qantas points and my DH has 32,000. We have been saving these points for a rainy day which happens to be now. We no longer collect points. It is my daughter's 1st birthday on 1st Oct and my 30th on the 2nd (ok sorry about the sop story haha) and to do something different we've decided to go on holidays with our points.

    For the past 8 weeks or so I have been checking daily (sometimes twice daily) online for flights Melb>Coolangatta ... it seems a lot of people must walk home from their holidays coz if there are flights going up there never seems to be anything going back. I am yet to see a single flight over this time return from Surfers!! Now the ones going up seem to be vanishing (no doubt coming back will now appear).
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    I now discover that apparently we fall smack bang in the middle of school holidays which obviously doesn't help so we start being "flexible" as is so highly recommended LOL and now I'm tyring Brisbane, Sunshine Coast, Cairns and NOTHING. For goodness sake how more flexible do you have to be than that??? We want to be away in the sunshine on the actual 1st and 2nd Oct but flexible with dates around that time to be away for about 7-8-or 9 nights. I mean how flexible do you have to be .. it seems to the point of staying home !!!!

    If we go Surfers or BNE we'd really like to go business class coz we have the points and they will be wasted if we dont because we no longer have the Visa's whereas Sunshine or Cairns not enough points so it would be Econ...

    Does anyone reckon it is likely they will release business class to surfers closer to the dates? I'm thinking a lot of flights would be full already so they probably wont? Also the odd flights I have seen available are flying at 6am or 22:00 which is just crazy because we have a baby and this is one area I find it really hard to be flexible on and a late morning/midday/early arvo flight would really make life easy but from what I'm seeing it ain't gonna happen and to Qantas easy is a dirty word??

    Should I be ringing too? Are these all avail flights online or if I ring am I likely to strike differently? I hate ringing but I guess I could be flexible :wink: if I had to be! LOL

    I am really starting to worry that we're not going to get anything. DH says he has to give work 4 weeks notice so I really need to have this sorted out by end Aug. :(
     
  2. Rune

    Rune Junior Member

    Jul 22, 2002
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    4
    Canberra
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    Best bet would probably be mel/bne as there is more capacity on this route than ool. Unfortunately, you have chosen a period that coincides with school holidays in many states, which is no doubt why availability is bad.

    You could try a multi-destination trip via syd/cbr - perhaps overnight or spend a few days if this helps your routing. This would require you to fly Y because of the 10K extra points required for a stopover. J seats on short domestic hops are not that special anyway :D

    The QF website keeps a list of destinations with award availability - for 30K points you have the choice of anywhere within Australia/NZ and much of the South Pacific - if you are flexible about destination as well as dates!

    I have had success ringing QF directly over using the web page - but I think these days availability is the same via either method, unless you are plat or CL , in which case, always ring :lol:


    -Jamie.
     
  3. Rune

    Rune Junior Member

    Jul 22, 2002
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    Canberra
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    I had a brief look this evening (20th) and can see availability on flights mel/ool or bne early October, with return flights still available via syd 8-10th October (bne only).

    Return flights did not show as much availability, but there was still some. I didn't check availability via cbr on the return leg.


    -Jamie.
     
  4. dajop

    dajop Senior Member

    Jul 1, 2002
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    I do not envy those of you, especially those who have advance booking restrictions, trying to plan ahead and organise a holiday using redemption seats. The last three redemptions I have done have been at the last minute (less than three days prior to departure, two separate MEL-BNE and one a domestic trip in the US with American airlines). I find that unless you are prepared to travel with very short notice it is extremely difficult to book ahead! Particularly now that a lot of Qld flights are one 717s (no J class at all - although I just flew on one with J class seats sold as economy) or new 737-800's - with only 8 J class seats. Good luck! Maybe try NZ??
     
  5. shillard

    shillard Guest

    The only difficulty I've experienced redeeming points (clost to 1 million redeemed in the past 2 years) has been during school holidays, returning from Hamilton Island to Newcastle, via BNE. Big deal, it was the middle of a peak period, and I booked about 3 months out from departure.

    A couple of weeks ago, for travel in January, I booked NTL-SYD-AKL-CHC-AKL-SYD-NTL, all in J (except the NTL-SYD-NTL run), with no problems. Had to extend our stay by one day (oh shame), got precisely the times I wanted, and the departure date I wanted. That was for two pax.


    The poster who started the thread really has no real grounds for complaint, expecting award travel during an ULTRA peak period (school holidays in the entire country, except TAS), and booking only a couple of months out - you've got to be joking.

    You can try and route it anyway you like, but at the end of the day it's still a trip from Melbourne to Queelsnald in the peak tourist season, coinciding with school holidays across the nation - and with less than 60 days notice.

    Ain't going to happen.
     
  6. dajop

    dajop Senior Member

    Jul 1, 2002
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    I think the heart of the problem is J class, when I checked for 1 October there is heaps of availability from MEL-BNE, all Y except for a very late night flight with J- but really there ain't a great deal of benefit to flying up the front on a 2hr flight - especially on a 737.

    Another thought is that it may depend on the time of day you are booking! (classic conspiracy theory this one is). With web specials (not sure about redemptions) I've noticed that they are not there when I check during the day. Go home, and happened to be online at 11pm and wacko heaps of availability, then back at work the following morning, around 9am all gone again! Maybe that is peculiar to web specials, encouraging people who are booking flights during the day (more likely to be business passengers) to pay higher fares. Don't know if this applies to redemptions though!
     
  7. burlof

    burlof Newbie

    Aug 20, 2002
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    Thank you to everyone who responded... I still haven't got any flights and the lady on the phone today said most of the flights to Surfers are pretty much full now. Whenever I call they try con me into buying tickets .. I am only going bcause of the free flights, we do not have the money to pay for flights and wont be going unless it's on FF. I am really depressed today because I have been banking on going away for my babies 1st birthday and haven't organised anything else to celebrate. I am not sure what to do now as it looks like we will miss out. I know this probably seems trivial but it really meant a lot to me to go away to celebrate like this and we rarely get away. We dont collect points anymore and DH has 31,000 and I have 38,000. We have never redeemed any points before either, these are just here because a once off lucky trip we had back in 99 when I was working. I've been saving them for a rainy day and it is just so frustrating to have them sitting there for so long and not being able to use them for just the right occassion.

    dajop...thank you for info about times etc. It's funny, I noticed 2 flights appear on the weekend, one 25/9 and other 30/9 but couldn't book them because there was never anything return from OOL or BNE or Sunshine. Now Monday lunch time both flights are missing from the system. Your suspicions appear correct. It seems when there is something going up there is nothing coming back which annoys me!!! I am tempted to leave until last minute but I would be devistated moreso if I got nothing because it would just put a real damper on the birthdays being left high and dry like that. Plus DH needs to organise work holidays etc.

    Shillard ... I dont expect you to understand! It isn't anything to you because you obviously fly here there and everywhere and if you couldn't get it you'd probably just buy it. Not everyone has that luxury. I wouldn't complain either if I had million points and had so many holiday options.

    Rune ... thanks. We want to be there on 1st & 2nd. When I looked I couldn't see anything return from BNE until 12th (I check 1,2xday). First avail going up 30th back 12th. 12 nights worked out too expensive for accommodation for us. Have been looking BNE option though and will keep an eye. We are Bronze which is a shame, I found out today that if you are diff clasification we would probably get something.

    Thanks again all,
    Michelle
    :cry: :cry: :cry:
     
  8. burlof

    burlof Newbie

    Aug 20, 2002
    4
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    Class

    OH and I am looking any Class. Because we have Bus Class there of course we want to use that if we can but at the end of the day it's what gets us there that's important.

    Also been trying Cairns but no luck. Not sure about Cairns though and not trying my heart out like I am with Surfers. Have heard it is really expensive up there to do stuff.

    New Zealand really appealed at first but we need to thaw out and Qld is the place to do that LOL.
     
  9. burlof

    burlof Newbie

    Aug 20, 2002
    4
    0
    I GOT FLIGHTS

    Hello an update to my last topic ... I ended up getting flights. Not for the times I wanted, we are going a week later and I am happy with the change of plans. It isn't ideal but we ended up getting an 8 night stay with early morning up and late arvo return flights both in Business Class which is great! I am soooo relieved to not have to spend day after day at QF web site or on the phone to them!! Yippeee I can have my life back.
    Michelle
    :lol: :lol: :lol:
     
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