The tipping scam plaguing Qantas’ Los Angeles lounge appears to have returned, with Qantas flyers reporting falling victim to the scam as recently as last month.

The scam, which was first reported on AFF two years ago, involves the showers in Qantas’ First and Business class lounges in Los Angeles. When showing lounge guests to a clean shower room, the lounge attendant will pick up a carefully-planted “tip” in full sight of the guest. The sole purpose of this practice appears to be to pressure guests into themselves leaving a tip.

If a tip had been left by the previous guest, it would have been collected while the bathroom was being cleaned between guests. Our members have even witnessed lounge attendants placing fake “tips” into clean shower rooms.

The airline’s official policy is that tipping in any Qantas lounge is not encouraged, and the solicitation of tips by lounge staff is prohibited. Regardless, the solicitation of tips continues to be a problem in the Los Angeles lounges.

While tipping may be customary in the United States, Qantas claims that its lounge attendants are compensated appropriately to make up for the lack of tips.

Our members believe that such actions by staff representing Qantas detract greatly from the passenger experience and the airline’s brand. Our members would like Qantas to put greater measures in place to stamp out this practice.

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Matt Graham
The editor of Australian Frequent Flyer, Matt's passion for travel has taken him to over 60 countries… with the help of frequent flyer points, of course!
Matt's favourite destinations (so far) are Germany, Brazil, New Zealand & Kazakhstan. His interests include economics, aviation & foreign languages, and he has a soft spot for good food and red wine.

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