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Status run - is it worth the trouble?

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Homer

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OK I know there is a lot of information on this forum covering status runs and I've been searching and reading. But I'd like some opinions (there's also no shortage of those in this place :)).

I'm a long term SG who yearns to be a WP...it's a character flaw. I used to fly more but since our daughter was born 19 months ago I've cut it right back. Now I do mostly domestic flights in J (mostly upgrades) and usually only a couple of short-haul and one long-haul international flight a year which always seem to be mis-timed so that they don't contribute points at the right time or else I find myself not on QF and therefore banking points into the wrong program.

So I have a conference coming up at the end of October in San Jose. The cost of a J ticket on QF is around the same as the cost of a J class DONE4. So I can either go SYD-LAX-SYD with a domestic flight to San Jose, get it all over and done with in 4 days, and probably miss out on WP, or else bite the bullet on a DONE4.

My QF anniversary is 30 November. By then I think I will be roughly 900 SCs shy of WP assuming I don't do this trip. What routing would you recommend to get me across the line and how can I calculate this myself? How difficult/tiring/money-wasting is it to do something like this?
 

simongr

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Ok first question - do you have the appetite to spend an extra few days away from your family? Doing this would add maybe 4 days+ to the trip. Also - there will be some additional taxes and fuel surcharges (although booking through AA's ATW desk would save some on that).

Based on the oringal routing you would earn 440 SCs if all in J. Have you factored that into your requirement of 900SCs?

The three DONE4 planning tools that I use are:

MileageMonkey 0.95013 - mileage monkey to validate possile routings (not 100% but close enough)

oneworld timetables - downloadable from oneworld - Home - I then use these to to check timings - is it actually practical to do the routing.

ExpertFlyer.com - Empowering the Frequent Flyer (you could use SeatCounter - The Booking Class Availability Machine now it is working again) to check availability on your requested flights.

In terms of routing to get an extra 900SCs - you could try this:

syd-lax-sjc-dfw-bos-dfw-jfk-bgi-lgw-fco-hel-fra-hkg-syd-per-adl-syd

And that is without really pushing it. The flight times would be the hard part I think. Oh and luggage - don't check luggage ;)
 

dot

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I guess the problem with the DONE4 for you will be the minimum length of the trip - if your conference plus direct travel to and from is only 4 days (1 day conference?) then that's quite a bit shy of the 10 days minimum for a DONE4. If you needed to be in San Jose for 7 days, then you would easily fit in the 10 day minimum even with a few side trips in Europe to add additional SC/miles.

So, I guess it comes down to you making a judgement call about the additional time required (would it need to come off your annual leave? - or could you create or find some reason to visit Europe to justify the additional time away from work).

For me, it's usually pretty easy for me to justify the additional time away, but on one DONE4 (I have five under my belt now) I have also taken a few days of leave to do some personal stuff in the UK like visiting rels.

My 2c worth... Dot
 

Homer

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simongr said:
Ok first question - do you have the appetite to spend an extra few days away from your family?
Yes I don't mind spending some time away to get to WP. I'd take them with me except that I don't think they'd enjoy it...

simongr said:
Based on the oringal routing you would earn 440 SCs if all in J. Have you factored that into your requirement of 900SCs?
The 440 SCs for the "basic" routing (ie just attending the conference) are not factored in. So I would still be 400 and change SCs short of WP if I did the "basic" routing.

simongr said:
syd-lax-sjc-dfw-bos-dfw-jfk-bgi-lgw-fco-hel-fra-hkg-syd-per-adl-syd
That looks pretty scary to me. :shock:
 

Homer

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dot said:
I guess the problem with the DONE4 for you will be the minimum length of the trip
The 10 days minimum for a DONE4 is a fact I wasn't aware of. The conference is for two days so my estimate of a 4-day trip wasn't thought through. It will be a 5-day trip. I can easily add on another 5 days, or more, but I'd probably have to treat this as annual leave. That also doesn't really bother me.

However I am starting to think that I might like to take the family along as I (perhaps pathetically) don't feel like being away from them for nearly 2 weeks...
 

simongr

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Homer said:
The 440 SCs for the "basic" routing (ie just attending the conference) are not factored in. So I would still be 400 and change SCs short of WP if I did the "basic" routing.
Then a very simple syd-lax-sjc-lax-lhr-hkg-syd-per-adl-syd would get you close without too much tweaking.


Homer said:
simongr said:
syd-lax-sjc-dfw-bos-dfw-jfk-bgi-lgw-fco-hel-fra-hkg-syd-per-adl-syd
That looks pretty scary to me. :shock:
Best not to look too closely at some of my itineraries ;)

In relation to the 10 day rule - there is none for SWP:

169N MINIMUM STAY ¥
170N -------------
171N .
172N TRAVEL FROM THE LAST INTERNATIONAL SECTOR MUST
173N COMMENCE NO EARLIER THAN 10 DAYS AFTER COMMENCEMENT OF
174N THE FIRST INTERNATIONAL SECTOR.
175N EXCEPTION 1: ORIGINATING EUROPE - TRAVEL ON THE LAST
176N INTERCONTINENTAL SEGMENT MUST COMMENCE NO
177N EARLIER THAN 10 DAYS AFTER COMMENCEMENT OF THE FIRST
178N INTERCONTINENTAL SEGMENT.
179N EXCEPTION 2: ORIGINATING SWP/HKG/JAPAN - FIRST
180N CLASS/BUSINESS CLASS - NONE

So you could do this in maybe 8 days door to door - beating my DONE4 record of 10 days
 

serfty

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The minimum is not pertinent for SWP departures. Form the oneworld Explorer Rules:
MINIMUM STAY

Travel on the last international sector must commence no earlier than 10 days after commencement of the
first international sector:
EXCEPTION 1 - For travel originating in Europe travel on the last intercontinental sector must commence
no earlier than 10 days after commencement of the first intercontinental sector
EXCEPTION 2 - for travel originating South West Pacific/Hong Kong/Japan
First and Business class - none​
 

Homer

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simongr said:
Then a very simple syd-lax-sjc-lax-lhr-hkg-syd-per-adl-syd would get you close without too much tweaking.
OK well that seems very do-able to me. I've got to go SYD-LAX-SJC-LAX...SYD anyway, so a "small" diversion via LHR and HKG can't hurt that much. The domestic sector can be used any time up to a year after trip commencement if memory serves so I can save that up.

Is there any rule about needing to spend a minimum amount of time on the ground? Can I just, for example, land at LHR and then schedule the next flight out to HKG? And is that what you status-run-Gods usually do?
 

serfty

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Note that travel on AA on domestic 2 class flights is in A class - earning First Class SC's:
Code:
Up to
Miles    SC's
  600    60
1,200    90
2,400   120
3,600   150
Unfortunately, SJO is in Costa Rica so only D class to/from there.

Here's a basic routing with N/A component that will earn 750 of those 900 SC's.

syd-lhr-lax-sjo-dfw-jfk-lax-dfw-hnl-syd

(This actual routing will earn 1270 SC's.
 

dot

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Appologies - I never noticed the SWP departures exception before... Homer -forget I mentioned it.
 

Homer

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serfty said:
Unfortunately, SJO is in Costa Rica so only D class to/from there.
Thanks serfty but I am travelling to San Jose (SJC), not SJO. I notice you have me going via Europe to North America instead of coming back via Europe. Is there any particular reason?
 

serfty

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Homer said:
... I am travelling to San Jose (SJC), not SJO. I notice you have me going via Europe to North America instead of coming back via Europe. Is there any particular reason?
Even better! Try this to earn 1310 SC's (810 in N/A).

syd-lhr-dfw-sjc-dfw-bos-lax-dfw-hnl-syd

There is no specific reason for the direction you could just as easily do the reverse for the same SC's.

Note that HNL may be hard to get A class at such short (yes) notice. Also, the Flight HNL/SYD is on a 763.
 

simongr

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If you have flexibility before or after your conference then schedule around that and then pick flights that work best for you. I have done the DONE4 in both directions for various reasons - 3 swp-na-eur-asia-swp and 2 swp-eur-na-asia-swp.

In terms of minimum time on the ground on the BEHEMOTH I did jfk-dfw-lax-jfk-nrt-hkg-syd all without leaving an airport... I would advise against that though...
 

Homer

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Many thanks to everyone who jumped in and helped with my questions. I think I've got enough information now to make some decisions.

Hopefully I will be able to get that coveted WP status....
 

Febs

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simongr said:
Based on the oringal routing you would earn 440 SCs if all in J.
Not that it makes a huge difference to the OP's situation, but wouldn't it be 480 SC's, as the "domestic business" AA flights would have to be in F, and hence earn F SC's? (Or is it actually possible to book "J" on Domestic AA?)

I only ask because all my AA domestic flights always book into F, and hence I earn F SC's. It's a bit odd when you earn 180 SC's from SYD-LAX, and then another 180 SC's by the time you reach Kansas City, which is barely half-way across the US! Still, NB to SG in one trip is quite nice. :)

Cheers,
- Febs.
 
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serfty

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An itinerary to get you to the conference 'fresh' may be preferable (does reduce SC's etc).

e.g.

syd-lax-sjc-dfw-sea-dfw-bos-lax-lhr-syd-<oz>

Be aware that all AA LAX-SJC flights are WHY only.
 

NM

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Febs said:
Not that it makes a huge difference to the OP's situation, but wouldn't it be 480 SC's, as the "domestic business" AA flights would have to be in F, and hence earn F SC's? (Or is it actually possible to book "J" on Domestic AA?)
You can book J (and D) on AA domestic flight if booking under the QF Codeshare flight number where it exists.
 

simongr

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Febs said:
< snip >

Cheers,
- Febs.
Completely correct - I was being lazy - but it might only be a one class service LAX-SJC - no idea what class that books into :)
 

moa999

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Note also that with the new Domestic Business lounges opening next year the WP status will be even more coveted.
 

serfty

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simongr said:
- but it might only be a one class service LAX-SJC - no idea what class that books into :)
Certainly only one-class is available on AA metal betwixt LAX and SJC; AA do have codeshares in F on AS but these are not valid for xONEx's.

DONEx's book into Y on American Eagle flights (not L).
 
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