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Not Flying VA / VS through HKG Again to LHR

mikenz

Member
Joined
Aug 30, 2013
Messages
126
Was your boarding pass printed with VS or VA on it? I would assume that you would have been able to go into Plaza lounge if your boarding pass had VS printed on it?

By the way, good effort for getting WP from flying in Y across oceans!
I was on a VA ticket with VA flight numbers.

Thanks! It's all on my own coin so not much in the way of J for me unless I'm redeeming!
I've managed it for the last 7 years through family pooling and quite a bit of long distance flying.
 

SheikYerbouti

Intern
Joined
Mar 15, 2017
Messages
56
A bit torn on whether to do this. Wife and I want to get to LHR in J next year and have ~580,000 VFF points which I don't think will get us 2 x J SYD-LHR return.
Also want to earn SCs - I'm WP but will be downgraded to SG in Dec and want to re-qual for that.

Options include:

1) Buy VA Y fare to HKG and use points to upgrade to J. Use points to redeem HKG-LHR on VS.

2) Buy SQ Y fare to LHR, transfer VFF points to Krisflyer and use those to upgrade Y to J.

3) .....?
 

Chicken

Active Member
Joined
May 9, 2006
Messages
930
Wife and I want to get to LHR in J next year and have ~580,000 VFF points which I don't think will get us 2 x J SYD-LHR return.
Both VS and VA do not allow straight mile redemption all the way from SYD to LHR. You need to make 2 separate redemptions.

Do you really want to play the upgrade lottery? Upgradable tickets are so expensive you may as well fly Y+ ?
 

mikenz

Member
Joined
Aug 30, 2013
Messages
126
580k VFF points should get you to LHR and back, but you might need to pay big $ in fees/taxes particularly with Etihad.
You can also buy VFF points if you're close to having enough points.

In my view J on Singapore and Etihad is better than on VS and VA and also has better connection times and more flight options.

My tip, if you choose Etihad or Singapore try to nab a flight on a 777 - I've found the J service better than on the A380 - although they don't tend to have an inflight bar!
 

Muppet501st

Member
Joined
Aug 22, 2015
Messages
490
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I just re-read Muppet's post and I think I may have gone to the wrong lounge in HK!
No you went to the correct ( only ) lounge VA WP have access to when flying on VA out of HKG.
We were flying to LHR on VS, hence access to the Priority First Lounge ( which is up there with the VS LHR clubshouse- re; free massage and coctails.)
 

SheikYerbouti

Intern
Joined
Mar 15, 2017
Messages
56
Do you really want to play the upgrade lottery? Upgradable tickets are so expensive you may as well fly Y+ ?
I thought buying SQ economy and using KF points to upgrade would be very straightforward. It seemed to be when I last flew with them.
 

Chicken

Active Member
Joined
May 9, 2006
Messages
930
I thought buying SQ economy and using KF points to upgrade would be very straightforward. It seemed to be when I last flew with them.
Well, I was testing the water last week, cheapest of the cheapest from Sydney to Beijing in September is $630 or so, Y+ around $1150. Y cheapest + exit row both ways all the way was $900.

Hence, I don't see the need to pay for full flex Y just to make play upgrade lottery. By that time, I may as well just take exit row in Y and sleep there, or just go Y+ , instead of sweating if I would win the lottery or end up in the middle of the middle row in Y which is sad.
 

SheikYerbouti

Intern
Joined
Mar 15, 2017
Messages
56
Is it much of a lottery? eg if you buy Economy flights and request points upgrade immediately, both 6 months in advance?
 

Tassieoptom

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Joined
Feb 27, 2016
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A bit torn on whether to do this. Wife and I want to get to LHR in J next year and have ~580,000 VFF points which I don't think will get us 2 x J SYD-LHR return.
Also want to earn SCs - I'm WP but will be downgraded to SG in Dec and want to re-qual for that.

Options include:

1) Buy VA Y fare to HKG and use points to upgrade to J. Use points to redeem HKG-LHR on VS.

2) Buy SQ Y fare to LHR, transfer VFF points to Krisflyer and use those to upgrade Y to J.

3) .....?
Not quite the same but my wife and I flew MEL-SIN-CDG return in J last September for about 132000 velocity ff points per person. So should be ok for less than what you have.
 

Mattg

AFF Supporter
Joined
Aug 21, 2011
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Not quite the same but my wife and I flew MEL-SIN-CDG return in J last September for about 132000 velocity ff points per person. So should be ok for less than what you have.
How did you do this? The price is 278,000 Velocity points per person for MEL-SIN-CDG return in business class.
 

SheikYerbouti

Intern
Joined
Mar 15, 2017
Messages
56
Fair enough. The plan to buy Y and upgrade to J was to get the Y SCs to help requalify for the year.
 

jasecao

AFF Supporter
Joined
Jan 4, 2016
Messages
118
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A bit torn on whether to do this. Wife and I want to get to LHR in J next year and have ~580,000 VFF points which I don't think will get us 2 x J SYD-LHR return.
Also want to earn SCs - I'm WP but will be downgraded to SG in Dec and want to re-qual for that.

Options include:

1) Buy VA Y fare to HKG and use points to upgrade to J. Use points to redeem HKG-LHR on VS.

2) Buy SQ Y fare to LHR, transfer VFF points to Krisflyer and use those to upgrade Y to J.

3) .....?
This is going to depend on a few things, how many SC's would you be after, is there family pooling involved?

No SC - SYD - LHR via EY redemption would fit (4 x 139,000 + 2604 taxes)

139000 points each way, approx 651 taxes per leg though (im guessing Singapore would be similar points just less taxes, but also much much harder to redeem)

No SC but potential fight - SYD - LHR F redemption + Eco redemption (408k points + 150k points + taxes, once again easier to redeem EY but SIN would be cheaper)

If you want to earn then your 2 options are there, however i think with 2, you would have to assign your Krisflyer do the transfer and upgrade then flip it back to VFF, I just find with upgrades, and especially for 2, availability might be an issue.
 

jasecao

AFF Supporter
Joined
Jan 4, 2016
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It looks like the continued trend of cutting cost due to their results

I think the barber is closed in the AUH first class lounge, most lounges have been outsourced ie London and basically Sydney/Melbourne

I wonder if there are any cuts in J and F
 

SheikYerbouti

Intern
Joined
Mar 15, 2017
Messages
56
you would have to assign your Krisflyer do the transfer and upgrade then flip it back to VFF,
Yes that was the idea, purchase SQ Y, convert VFF to KF points, use KF points to upgrade Y to J seats, then revert the link on the booking to VFF before flying, collect Y SCs (wife pooled to me).

I just find with upgrades, and especially for 2, availability might be an issue.
Hm. I wonder if there's any way to know for sure.
 

mikenz

Member
Joined
Aug 30, 2013
Messages
126
I just arrived back in Sydney after trying the VS/VA trip from London through HK. I thought I'd share my experience for anyone considering this route.
I usually do my Europe flying on Singapore or Etihad but I was curious.

I am Velocity Platinum and I flew Economy.

I'm not sure if Velocity Plat members can use the drive thru check in at Heathrow, but I decided not to risk it.
I used the VS Upper Class check in within the terminal with no problems. No waiting.
I asked the staff if I could use velocity points to upgrade and the answer was 'Yes, but you need to call Velocity".
I called Velocity and the answer was 'no'.
My velocity number and status didn't appear on either of my boarding passes, but the check in staff did write "velocity plat" on my boarding pass.
I had to show my digital velocity card showing the expiry date to enter the lounge, which was a major pain because my phone battery had died. There seems to be a very clear rule, no proof of status = no entry.

I'd never experienced it, so the Virgin Clubhouse at LHR was the main reason I booked this route and I wasn't disappointed. It has to be up there with the best I've ever experienced. I've heard comparisons with QF First in Sydney which I've never been to -the best I've been to is the LAX Star Alliance lounge by Air NZ - and the clubhouse probably wins.

Boarding the flight was pain free - I boarded through the Upper Class line with no problems.

The flight was full but comfortable. The seat was fine and the food options and entertainment weren't great. All in all an ok flight with the highlight being we arrived 90 mins early, but I would probably go with Singapore over VS and Etihad for the hard product.

I had forgotten how much I hate Hong Kong airport. It's a maze of travellators and inter-terminal trains with no clear signage. It took me about 45 minutes to work out where the Hong Kong Airlines lounge was and how to get there (go through transfer security and head for gate 209, look behind you and up stairs and there she is).

The HK airlines lounge was nice, not very busy when I arrived but very busy by the time I left.
Top tip: If you're hoping to take a shower in the lunge you need to book one with the front desk and I'd recommend doing that as soon as you arrive. I decided to eat first which was a mistake. You can't book a time for a shower, you are given a buzzer when one becomes available, and they don't or can't tell you when that's likely to be. I waited 90 minutes for my shower.

When I boarded the VA flight to Sydney there was confusion over my boarding pass because it had been issued by VS. After a few minutes of frantic phone calls they just gave me back my original boarding pass and I boarded without any problems.

I was greeted in my seat by the head purser and received recognition for being a platinum member by way of a menu that everyone else received just before service started. A small gesture I guess, but I remember when Etihad used to hand out noise cancelling headphones to Vel Plat members!

The VA food and entertainment was worse than the VS flight.

In all - the Clubhouse was the highlight and the rest was pretty average. I'm doing the return journey in a few weeks and the only thing I'm looking forward to is the 'Etihad' lounge in Sydney and the revivals lounge in London.

As a Vel Plat who often travels in economy for these long flights my assessment is:
Best for comfort: Singapore Airlines
Best for Service: Singapore Airlines
Best food and drink: Singapore Airlines/Etihad
Best entertainment: Etihad - because they have live sports
Best lounges: Etihad wins because I believe the most important lounge is the one you use in transit. Second would be VA/VS and last would be Singapore because of the shambles of a lounge in SIN.
An update on this - I have decided to ditch my return flight on VA/VS and have picked up a redemption flight from Cairns to Dublin with Hainan Airlines in business class. The redemption was great value at 125k points and around $120 in fees.

Review to follow.
 

Muppet501st

Member
Joined
Aug 22, 2015
Messages
490
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Having flown this route with VA and VS on a RTW fare,( and we really enjoyed it ) ive just booked it again for Feb 2020, There is a currently another RTW special on for mid Jan-March 2020.
 

Must...Fly!

AFF Supporter
Joined
Jan 12, 2010
Messages
3,092
Having flown this route with VA and VS on a RTW fare,( and we really enjoyed it ) ive just booked it again for Feb 2020, There is a currently another RTW special on for mid Jan-March 2020.
Do you by any chance have a link for this?
 

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