I travel with my wife and children every couple of years to Glasgow from Melbourne, our preference is one stop in Dubai and plough straight through. In terms of my options seems to me I can get an emirates credit card or qff credit card as my points from flying will be minimal.
I want to either upgrade tickets or pay for economy tickets with points. Where should I be concentrating my efforts?
I have just applied for anz black with 75 k bonus qff points.
If you are not flexible in that you have to fly into Glasgow with only one stop (which I can understand with 2 kids), then Emirates (EK) is your only option, as there aren’t many airlines that service Glascow.
In this case, Qantas point is probably your best bet as they charge less points than EK’s skyward and is much easier to earn Qantas points in Australia. However, please note that Qantas charges fuel surcharges on redemption flight, and it could easily be $600-700 for this redemption. This takes up a great proportion of a discounted economy fare, especially your kids can get kids fare, it may not be wise to redeem economy ticket. So I would advice to aim for business class and above (good luck finding 4 business class seats on EK A380).
If you are looking at upgrades, unfortunately you can’t upgrade on EK flights using QF points so you’d need to focus on EK skyward points. However, I don’t recommend upgrades normally as you usually have to buy the most expensive full flexi ticket to be upgradable. You can easily pay >$3000 for it and no guarantee for upgrade. If you don’t get your upgrade, then you are stuck in a very expensive economy seat.
If you are willing to be a bit more flexible (which is the key to the mileage game), perhaps consider flying into a different city such as Edinburgh, which is serviced by more airlines including Etihad and Qatar. Etihad usually has more seats and very little surcharge. How about a 2 stop itinerary? Consider Singapore airlines’ business class for 68000 points each (Qantas charges 64000 in economy to Glascow), then buy a cheap cross channel ticket with KLM? If you are flexible and are willing to consider these options, then I’ll guide you how to earn points to redeem these.
Can’t add much to Michael’s comments – very comprehensive. I’m planning a similar trip but to Manchester.
Only thing to add is that flying via AMS with SQ and a separate connection will reduce the UK “departure tax” which is approx $200 for Aus bookings.
I’m certainly happy to fly into Edinburgh.
Would do 2 stops if I could get a leg or two in business.
thanks for your help.
Ok. That’s good. Personally I would be a bit more flexible just to fly business class on the long haul and economy on short haul.
To fly into Edinburgh, Etihad will be your best chance as Qatar tend to be a bit stingy with award seats. To redeem Etihad (EY) the best currency for Australian credit card is virgin velocity. They charge 125k one way in business. The ANZ black you got can switch to earn VA after you got your Qantas sign up bonus. Just switch to ANZ reward and you’ll earn 1 point per dollar with Visa and 1.5/$ with Amex. If you have tax or HECS to pay, make sure you use your card as it will clock up your velocity very quickly. Just keep an eye when ANZ stop crediting ATO payments. (Don’t call, they’ll say you don’t earn, but we know you do) Use your CC in every situation and you will collect enough points in no time. Of course keep an eye out good sign up bonus like the recent 110k velocity platinum Amex. Just don’t do it too often as your credit score will go down every time you apply.
If you are willing to do 2 stops, then Singapore airlines (SQ) Krisflyer (KF) is the one to look into. Again your ANZ black will earn KF as well, but at a lower rate. It may be better to convert to velocity first and then convert to KF.
However, there are other cards that earn KF points at a much higher rate, such as Westpac Altitude Black (1.5/$ with Amex), Citipretige and Citi signature (currently 1.33/$ and 1/$ respectively on visa, but the earn rate might go down soon), Amex plat edge..,,etc. just check Keith’s guide on each card.
KF has a sweet spot to Europe and that’s Amsterdam at only 68000 miles one way in business class, and they’ll use a350 for that route, which houses the new business class. Then it should be quite easy to purchase a ticket across the channel. For intra European flights, business class is really economy seats with middle seat blocked so flying one hour in economy is not so bad. The downside is I don’t think you can check the baggage through to Glascow, that means you’ll need to collect baggage and clear custom in Amsterdam. Probably good idea to stay overnight.
Hope than helps.
Thanks very helpful,
Think I will look at velocity points and keep the option open for kris flyer and the amestradam option
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