QF Gold/OneWorld Sapphire flying with BA....

Discussion in 'Qantas Frequent Flyer Program' started by JohnK, Jul 4, 2006.

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  1. JohnK

    JohnK Veteran Member

    Mar 22, 2005
    BNE, SYD and CNX
    I booked an economy award flight SYD-BKK for July 16th and BA10 was the only option available. In fact looking at other award availabilities 2 weeks before date I wanted and up to 1 week after date I wanted BA10 appeared almost everyday. Unfortunately my dates are not flexible so I had to lock in July 16th.

    I have been allocated 34D on a 747 with 3 economy cabins ranging from rows 25-53. Not as far forward as I would like with what I felt was a good bargaining power, OneWorld Sapphire.

    I logged on to BA website to manage my booking and provided all the details they needed, but could not select a seat forward of row 32. Since 34D had 2 empty seats next to it I chose 33G as my new seat assignment as there is only 1 empty seat next to it. This occurred on the weekend so I called QF and they tried being helpful but they also could not allocate a seat in rows 25-31.

    I called BA first thing Monday morning on the 1300767177 number. I explained the situation and got the same answer, cannot allocate a seat for you. Why? Rows 25-31 are reserved for BA's elite and OneWorld Emeralds. Fair enough but according to expert flyer these seats are empty. I pleaded with her to allocate one of the empty 28C or 28H seats for me. No. All she could do was put a note in my booking that I wanted to be seated in these seats and that these seats will be available at OLCI, 24 hours before flight or at flight check-in. Good luck in the lottery.

    I was under the illusion, and boy was I wrong, that OneWorld Sapphire meant something! Apparently it means nothing. Is this the way Oneworld airlines treat a OneWorld Sapphire? Give me QF anyday. I feel that QF is too accommodating to Oneworld Sapphire members from other airlines. They are able to access premium seats. QF should treat them the same way I am being treated by BA.

    Interested to know how other people have been treated flying with BA or any other OneWorld airline as a QF Gold/OneWorld Sapphire.

  2. NM


    Aug 27, 2004
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    This has been BA's policy as long as I can remember. They keep Emerald as something special. However, their OLCI does enable people who are keen to be able to snag a better seat. Just plan ahead and be on-line at 23:59 before the scheduled departure time.

    BA does this to ensure their Gold and OW Emeralds get their preferred seats, and not find they have all been snagged by people holding lower status. BA is indeed different to most other OneWorld airlines in this regard.

    Try and get any OneWorld Ruby benefits from BA and you will quickly learn that they do not recognise that level. They do not have a Ruby level in their FF program and hence don't recognise it.
    I have always been well treated by BA, and permitted to select the preferred seats. But that is as a OneWorld Emerald. As I am unlikely to have my QF platinum status renewed this year, I know I will have OneWorld Sapphire status via QF and AA programs next year and as such I accept their policy for elite status seat assignments.

    I may not like their policy, but I accept it as their right to impose it and will work with their system by using OLCI at the 24 hour mark to snag the best seat available at that time. I will also be using QF or CX for flight to Europe, and AA for trans-Atlantic flights, so will only be using BA for intra-Europe flights where I am mainly concerned with getting an "A" or "C" seat rather than a "D", "E" or "F" seat.
  3. JohnK

    JohnK Veteran Member

    Mar 22, 2005
    BNE, SYD and CNX
    Is this 23:59 actual time or 23:59 before flight time?

    Off course it is their right. If I had a choice I would not have flown with them. I tried so hard to avoid their flight. I would have preferred to get CX SYD-HKG-BKK for 42,000 points but no availability until 3 days later. In the end my timeframe was the winner.
  4. Mal

    Mal Enthusiast

    Dec 25, 2004
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    "Check-in is available:

    from 24 hours before the scheduled departure time
    from 23 hours before the scheduled departure time when travelling from the US
    on all British Airways flights, including those booked through a travel agent "
  5. NM


    Aug 27, 2004
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    from my previous post to you:
    You do have a choice. Nobody forced you to use QF FF points for the flight. You chose to use QF FF points and hence were constrained in your choice of flight options. Had you purchase the ticket with money instead of QF FF points you could have chosen any of a number of airlines, including QF, SQ or GF with non-stop options or any number of choices with one-stop options include CX as you indicated.

    The choice is yours and you can made that decision based on any criteria you like, such as cost, seat allocation policy, comfort, style of food, IFE system installed, FA attire, service levels, baggage allowance, recline policy, FF points earning, lounge access, country to which your money will go, languages used on board, safety history etc.
  6. JohnK

    JohnK Veteran Member

    Mar 22, 2005
    BNE, SYD and CNX
    Irrelevant now and I don't really care. I used QF FF points and in the end I had no choice of flights other than BA. I am so stupid for not thinking out all my options clearly beforehand. And the 3 weeks I spent researching it was an absolute waste of time. Trying to find the right time off work, not missing an important golf game on the morning of July 16th, making sure I return in time for a birthday party on July 29th and trying to have a decent holiday in between. I am a failure.

    OK I am drifting away from my original post.

    "Interested to know how other people have been treated flying with BA or any other OneWorld airline as a QF Gold/OneWorld Sapphire."

    Telling me whether I was right or wrong or why I made my choice does not fit into above inquiry/question/statement.
  7. serfty


    Nov 16, 2004
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    My few experiences with BA have been positive, but they were as a QF WP. I guess it should be noted that BA see their "Executive Club" as an elite only frequent flyer scheme; you cannot even join unless you fly on a premium fare.

    Given the info posted here I guess the only option is to be online at 16:35 Sat 15th and go for it with the refresh button (F5 for speed). I suggest using an internet cafe or the like with reliable trunk like communication speeds.

    I did a further seat map for the flight in question using expertflyer and currently between 3 and 13 of the 62 'premium' seats have preallocated. (it shows the 10 bassinet positions etc as allocated, even though they may not be).
  8. JohnK

    JohnK Veteran Member

    Mar 22, 2005
    BNE, SYD and CNX
    And so they should and I accept that. I was just being silly thinking that OneWorld Sapphire meant anything to other OneWorld airlines. My gripe comes from the fact that QF treats other OneWorld Sapphires a lot better than BA treats other OneWorld Sapphires. I would have thought some consistency existed within OneWorld but obviously this does not exist. Why bother having OneWorld statuses anyway?

    Yes OK be prepared to join the lottery and if I am lucky I can snag 28C, 28D or 28H, 28J or even 29A and 29K. I will try.

    I can also accept that I have 33G and really it is no problem. I hope the flight is not packed and hopefully the seat next to me remains empty and the person in front does not recline. No point going into technical details but I need to remain as upright as possible during flight, so if person in front reclines I am totally stuffed.

    And yes I know I could have chosen to pay for flight, or gone in business class or first class, or used CX, or not gone at all, but I have award ticket with BA now and I need to be able to manage a 9 hour flight the best way possible.

    Thanks for all your help Ross.
  9. NM


    Aug 27, 2004
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    Perhaps BA knows how easy it is to reach OneWorld Sapphire on some of the other OneWorld FF programs :p . One flight is all it took for me to get there.

    At least they do honour the published OneWorld benefits for Sapphire members:
    • Business Class Priority Check-in
    • Priority Standby and Waitlist (not offered by LAN)
    • Boarding at Convenience
    • Business Class Lounge Access
    Note that seating allocation is not a published OneWorld benefit. However, as you have noted, some OneWorld airlines do extend their own FF program elite benefits to other OneWorld airline's elite FF members.
  10. markis10

    markis10 Veteran Member

    Nov 25, 2004
    BNE & SYD
    John, online checkin is the way to go, flew back from Sin with BA two weeks ago, could only get an average seat allocated at booking, as soon as online checkin was open I was on and grabbed a great seat that was honoured, (my sequence number was 3 so I was not even the quickest). This seat had been reserved for top teir and the cabin was full, there is hope!
  11. Reggie

    Reggie Established Member

    Mar 20, 2006
    JohnK, I agree with your comments, I feel that QF look after other oneworld status customers better than their partners look after the QF oneworld status customers. I haven't had the same problem as you as I am WP. However I was annoyed with CX when my boss (also WP) and I were seated in the very back of J class on HKG-LAX, and then in the 3 seat area of J on LAX-HKG, besides my preference being forward window and my bosses forward isle.
  12. Hi there

    The only recent flight i have taken on BA was MAN-LHR on the shuttle in June, got to the airport about 1 hr before check-in opened for this flight ( my drop off had to go to work) The nice check-in girl made a phone call and got the flight opened early, and checked me in from MAN via LHR & HEL to SIN and this was on 2 tickets (plus an op-up from HEL-SIN;) ). I had short transfer tags put on my bags (The T1-T1 transfer was 5 hrs) She then gave me directions to the Terrace lounge and wished me an enjoyable day riding airplanes:shock:

    The fare MAN-LHR was 8 quid + 24 quid fuel fines, etc, so i consider i got excellent service from BA for what they got out of me.

  13. Gazza

    Gazza Member

    Feb 5, 2006
    My recent experiences with BA have been rather bizarre.

    On a recent flight from Sydney to Bangkok (with QF connection from Brisbane). I checked in at Brisbane (domestic) and was given a boarding pass with a pre-allocated rear of aircraft seat number, when I asked the usual questions (is it a full flight? Can I have an empty seat next to me?) the QF staffer told me that they cannot see into BA’s system and I should check when I got to Sydney (it would be to late by then).

    The QF Club staff rung BA on my behalf and were basically told to sod off (as was I when I dared to call them directly).

    The flight was not much better. This being the only time I have been on in my life where I have lodged a complaint about the cabin staff( after their bad treatment of other passengers and lack of professionalism). I also asked them why they don’t let one of their “partner airlines” look into their system to asses seats they allow them to sell (mine was a QF ticket).

    It took BA 3 months to reply to my e-mail complaint and even then they went on about food disruptions (nothing at all to do with my complaint). Like I said, Bizarre.

    Unlike others I find CX are superb (second best airline in the world) and frequently get upgrades from them.

    Incidentally I am a Plat.

  14. NRMOZ

    NRMOZ Junior Member

    Jul 5, 2006
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    I've had good and bad times flying BA; both the best and worst were on code share flights via a Qantas ticket.

    The best was London to Zurich, some years back on Swiss Day, when from the last seat in the plane, after winning a competition on board I was able to sit in on one of the worlds most spectacular landings... (this was before 9/11!)

    That flight was special.

    The worst would have been from Brazil to Sydney on a plane that quite frankly had seen the best of its days.

    I did learn during the flight (as it was an unusually tight configuration) that the aircraft had been on the Hong Kong London sector and was chartered to Qantas - but nothing worked properly - cabin wise)

    I was seated in business with no working audio or TV, nor even a light. A seat change proved senseless as the seat mechanisms had failed.

    The crew however tried their best to please.

    Again this was some years ago and in fact I seem to remember that it was actually a flight from Argentina - as I had to fly south first...

    The more modern flights with BA I find very sterile; though I've been flying the Singapore Sydney route of late...

    I'm convinced that CP remain head and shoulers above the rest; Qantas hangs in there despite what appears to be cuts to every part of their service... and Emirates are coming on strong.

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