Fare codes and earning status credits on Oneworld intra-Asia flights

4 replies

AlexTravAddict

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

Member since 17 May 2015

Total posts 43

I have an upcoming trip to Asia and I’m planning to book internal flights between different cities using One World airlines (eg, Malaysia, Cathay, JAL). I’m keen to book flights that earn Qantas status credits, however, this is proving to be exceedingly difficult because either the fare code is not shown or when the fare code is shown it is not a fare code that earns status credits (according to the Qantas partner airlines earning tables). I understand that some cheaper economy flights don’t earn status credits on Malaysia Airlines and Cathay Pacific (not sure about JAL), but even when I select a higher fare type the fare code often still doesn’t appear eligible. I’ve been searching for flights using google flights and this usually results in multiple options to book the flight (either directly with the airline or through third parties).

My two questions are as follows:

Are there any tips for working out what the fare codes is (especially when booking through third parties like agoda or gotogate?). Even the Malaysia Airlines website doesn’t always show the fare code (depending on how you search for a flight).

Are there any tips for booking flights with fare codes that are eligible to earn status credits (eg, are there any platforms that only sell eligible fare types, are there certain itineraries that earn points, are there ways to search for flights that specifically earn status credits, etc)?

Any advice would be appreciated!

APACPete

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

Member since 09 Jun 2017

Total posts 50

At one point I tried to do this, hunting around to work out which flights, airlines and ticket types would provide points but often when they came they were quite minuscule so hardly worth the additional cost and all the effort. Have totally given up now and book the best flight at the right price then shoot in a request for missing points after the trip if there is nothing credited, sometime get them, sometimes don’t.

jeppetto367

Member since 06 Jun 2017

Total posts 47

If you book via Expedia it will show you the fare codes when booking, and sometimes allow you to choose different fare codes too (obviously at a price increase). They give you the airline PNR after booking too so you can manage the booking directly with the airline. Might be worth using Expedia to book in your case.

quantumreality

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

Member since 16 Jan 2018

Total posts 67

It really depends on how much money you are willing to spend to buy the fare codes that give SCs and where is your 'base'.

If you are a Qantas member, then the best bet to maximize SC, in my opinion, is to fly Jetstar (GK/3K/JQ) within Asia (but you need to buy the bundle that gives you SCs - can be quite reasonable). For example, a one-way Jakarta-Singapore flight on 3K, with max bundle gives you 20 SCs at the cost of 160-200 dollars.

The downside of flying Jetstar is of course you can only access Qantas lounges. AFAIK, there are not that many Qantas-operated lounges in Asia where Jetstar also flies, and with base in Singapore, it means you need to fly out from T4 Changi, a bit of a hassle to go to T1 for the lounges. But if lounge access is not important and you don't mind flying budget airline, then Jetstar is your best bet.

MH and CX are good full-service airlines, with nice lounges too! But, in my experiences, MH and CX are just not friendly with Qantas when it comes to fare codes that give you SCs. For MH, the 'lowest' SC-earning fare code is V, which can cost me an extra 100 dollars or so for a one-way ticket Jakarta-KUL, and it only gives you 10 SCs. If you buy the lowest business class fare code 'Z', you still earn SC at 'flexible economy' rate. Worth the money? Depends on your personal circumstances...

CX, in my experience, is even more restrictive and expensive. Though if you fly PE, the fare codes do earn SCs are reasonable rate.

I use ITA Matrix to find the price for a particular airline (or a particular alliance) on a particular route at a set of fare codes. On the ITA Matrix website, use the advanced controls.

For example, I can use 'MH+' under 'Routing codes' field, for example, to find flights operated by Malaysia airlines only, and 'F bc=V|bc=M|bc=blah...' to find fares for specific booking code (under Extension Codes field). Once you find the flight(s) that you want, you need to go to a travel agent and get them to book and issue the ticket.

I tried to use a website that claimed to be able to isuse the tickets based on your search on ITA matrix, but when I used them, they did not respect the fare codes (they default to the lowest fare codes, just like most other flight search tools).

Good luck!

AlexTravAddict

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

Member since 17 May 2015

Total posts 43

Originally Posted by quantumreality

It really depends on how much money you are willing to spend to buy the fare codes that give SCs and where is your 'base'.

If you are a Qantas member, then the best bet to maximize SC, in my opinion, is to fly Jetstar (GK/3K/JQ) within Asia (but you need to buy the bundle that gives you SCs - can be quite reasonable). For example, a one-way Jakarta-Singapore flight on 3K, with max bundle gives you 20 SCs at the cost of 160-200 dollars.

The downside of flying Jetstar is of course you can only access Qantas lounges. AFAIK, there are not that many Qantas-operated lounges in Asia where Jetstar also flies, and with base in Singapore, it means you need to fly out from T4 Changi, a bit of a hassle to go to T1 for the lounges. But if lounge access is not important and you don't mind flying budget airline, then Jetstar is your best bet.

MH and CX are good full-service airlines, with nice lounges too! But, in my experiences, MH and CX are just not friendly with Qantas when it comes to fare codes that give you SCs. For MH, the 'lowest' SC-earning fare code is V, which can cost me an extra 100 dollars or so for a one-way ticket Jakarta-KUL, and it only gives you 10 SCs. If you buy the lowest business class fare code 'Z', you still earn SC at 'flexible economy' rate. Worth the money? Depends on your personal circumstances...

CX, in my experience, is even more restrictive and expensive. Though if you fly PE, the fare codes do earn SCs are reasonable rate.

I use ITA Matrix to find the price for a particular airline (or a particular alliance) on a particular route at a set of fare codes. On the ITA Matrix website, use the advanced controls.

For example, I can use 'MH+' under 'Routing codes' field, for example, to find flights operated by Malaysia airlines only, and 'F bc=V|bc=M|bc=blah...' to find fares for specific booking code (under Extension Codes field). Once you find the flight(s) that you want, you need to go to a travel agent and get them to book and issue the ticket.

I tried to use a website that claimed to be able to isuse the tickets based on your search on ITA matrix, but when I used them, they did not respect the fare codes (they default to the lowest fare codes, just like most other flight search tools).

Good luck!


Thanks for this. I will give ITA matrix a try.

Re Jetstar: I've often flown Jetstar around Asia and just completed several domestic flights in Japan on the max bundle which I think is an excellent option. Incidentally, since Jetstar moved to T4 in Singapore I've only had a couple of Jetstar flights and using the Qantas lounges was not practical.

My understanding is you can transfer from T4 to T1 for the sole purpose of using the lounges. I never had a problem accessing the two Singapore lounges previously with a Jetstar Asia (3K) flight number. However, I was just reading the lounge access rules on the Qantas website and the information is a bit convoluted (especially around bringing a guest if flying on a 3K flight rather than a JQ flight). It made me wonder whether Qantas had recently tweaked the rules on entry. Have you had any experience with accessing the lounges recently?

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