How to fly Cathay Pacific business class Hong Kong to Melbourne using Qantas points?

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I’m searching on Qantas Frequent Flyer website for Cathay Pacific business class availability flying HK to MEL one way, in early July 2019. The seats aren’t supposed to be available until 353 days in advance, but I was checking for flight availability on what should be visible now (late June), and it seems I cannot see any Cathay Pacific flights – even in economy class. Only Qantas seems to be showing up. Is there some sort of blackout period for redemptions on Cathay Pacific, or something else I’m not doing right?

  • Hi Danny, We are planning a RTW trip in Sep/Oct 2019 starting with MEL-ZRH. I have been checking flight availability at least daily for at least 6 months (OCD is a curse.) Until 3-4 weeks ago Cathay always had good availability in Business 358 days out on Mon Tue Wed and occas Sat Sun a week or so closer. Everything changed about a month ago. Now there is nothing! This has happened once or twice before for a week at a time earlier in the year but the flights always came back. I rang QFF as to why a couple of weeks ago but they have no idea. My hope is that either school holidays or the northern summer are the reason but I must admit it’s looking more serious the longer it goes on. Without Cathay it’s going to be much more difficult, and maybe cost more points, to book our trip.

  • If it’s any help I’ve just checked another of our legs. Over the last few days some JFK-MEL Business Cathay flight have begun to return and the furthest in advance available now is for Sat Jul 6.

  • Hi ianz, thanks for the insights, hopefully availability on this leg is also going to be restored. I’m curious though, for your RTW trip, are you using oneworld classic reward? My understanding on that is that thats always 280K Qantas points, no matter which oneworld airlines you’re flying, with the only difference being the carrier charges.

  • Yes using oneworld classic. The confusing part early on is that Emirates is a ‘partner’ of Qantas (not sure but I think this means they might share flights) but not a member of oneworld.

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Hi Danny,

I’ve been closely monitoring Cathay Pacific availability for some weeks now as I intend to book a reward flight to Europe with them.

No, you’re not missing anything. Even the Cathay website doesn’t have any Asia Miles redemptions available in late June: they all show up as “waitlist”. As I write this, the earliest flights with actual reward availability are on or before about June 20, and I think they’re turning up on the Qantas website as well.

Cathay revamped its Asia Miles structure last month, and at this stage it seems to me that it’s resulting in less availability. I’d love the good people at Point Hacks to look into this at some stage!

  • Hi sixtyeight,

    Thanks for your response. That does sound reasonable, I booked the outbound flight in early June (30th May departing Melb -> Hong Kong -> Barcelona) without an issue (patchy availability but I presume that was just due to popularity).

    Now it just looks like Cathay Pacific is not showing its availability, as I doubt seats in all classes are booked after mid June!

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In fact, it seems like the latest date I can view Cathay Pacific flights of any class is 18th June 2019? Seems weird to me, as that seems to have been the case for the last few days I’ve checked, 18th June being the latest I can see, despite the 353 day window moving past that already.

From my experience so far actually, this 353 day window is a bit inconsistent, as I booked a Dublin to Hong Kong flight on Cathay Pacific for 4th Jul 2019 a couple days ago, despite it being more than 353 days in advance.

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