Which *A Airlines are worth redeeming extra miles to fly F instead of J?

Discussion in 'Star Alliance' started by Tiki, Dec 16, 2011.  |  Print Topic

  1. Tiki
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    Tiki Silver Member

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    I'm based in BNE so there aren't any *A flights with F available. J is available on TG, SQ and NZ. I have read some rave reviews of TG's F class but to do this, we would have to pay for BNE-SYD-BNE and use miles to redeem F plus pay an extra 30k US DM miles per person. Is it worth it?

    It would actually be nice to have this kind of information on all the *A carriers as well.
     
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  2. NYBanker
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    NYBanker Gold Member

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    Only a few *A carriers offer international F, but most that do are quite nice.

    LH, LX, TG, NH and OZ are the principal *A carriers offering international F. For 20k or 30k more miles, I'd elect to go all the way to the front, if space were available.

    I wouldn't waste the points on UA or CA. JJ offers three-class F service on a small number of flights - not sure about the service offering. I think those are all the *A carriers offering three-class F.
     
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  3. gpaya
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    gpaya Gold Member

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    Where are you headed to?

    LH is definitely worth it, as is NH. TG is great, but I've only flown the Jet Airways leased aircraft.

    On LX, it's worth it for service, but the single seats in J are quite private and comfortable.
     
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  4. cennas
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    cennas Gold Member

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    I've only been on TG and SQ in F. TG will be worth it for the amazing ground service in BKK. I don't think you can redeem on SQ in their 'new' F, but even in their old F the inflight service will be exceptional.
     
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  5. Tiki
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    Tiki Silver Member

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    Next year I will be redeeming miles for a BNE-BZE/SJO-BNE trip to take place in 2013-Central American birding trip. I always book as soon as possible after the return is bookable, 330 days out.

    In 2013, I will be redeeming miles for BNE-Europe which will be an open-jaw as there will be a Mediterranean cruise involved for travel in 2014.

    I know it's advance planning but that's how I determine which credit cards to get, where to buy flower gifts, where to allocate online shopping, etc. The Grand Slam is my primary source of RDM. I wish US would start offering one-ways like UA/CO does so I could split the journey-outbound in J, return in F.

    If I book BNE-BKK in J (since F isn't offered on this route) and BKK-Europe in F I think I still have to pay the F redemption. I'm not sure if a mixed class redemption would get us into the F lounge in BKK.
     
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  6. cennas
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    cennas Gold Member

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    If your arriving or departing flight is in F, you'll get access to the F lounge in BKK. :)
     
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  7. NYBanker
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    NYBanker Gold Member

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    Sounds like prudent planning, to me...
     
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  8. jbcarioca
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    jbcarioca Gold Member

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    JJ F is very, very nice. They give an amenity trolley that allows you to pick and choose whatever you want, as much as you want, the food and drink are outstanding and on arrival in Brazil they escort you through immigrations, a trolley with your bags is waiting when you arrive and you're escorted out of customs. Superb!

    I'd pay for the new TG, LH (especially the A380, but any LH F), LX and NH I'd do too. I don't know about OZ, and I'd pay nothing for UA F.
     
  9. gpaya
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    gpaya Gold Member

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    For your BZE/SJO trip, you're looking at a N. American Gateway for SJO/BZE with mor options from SJO

    You could do:

    BNE-SIN/BKK-HKG/PVG/PEK/NRT-YYZ/EWR/IAH-SJO

    Note: in the above situation- you can only get NRT-IAH direct non-stop, which will also give you access to BZE (CO flies IAH-BZE).

    BNE-AKL to asian gateway is also an option.

    You might have issues going BNE-AKL/SYD to the US as trans-pac that way is tough to come by. And you're still looking at: BNE-SYD-YVR/LAX/SFO-IAH-BZE/SJO

    With AKL, you'll be looking at options: BNE-AKL-IAH (depending on 787 launch)-SJO/BZE or the more traiditional YVR/SFO/LAX cx point..
     
  10. NYBanker
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    Interesting. I've never flown JJ (nor been to South America!)....how are they about award inventory in F?
     
  11. Steven Schwartz
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    Steven Schwartz Gold Member

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    Well, one thing I haven't seen mentioned is how many mies you have. I wrote a recent thread about our experience in transatlantic F on UA. We had to miles to burn and would do it again. The new UA F cabin is very, very comfortable with a lot of privacy. Yes, the service is wanting and not close to other F standards but again, if you have the miles, it is enjoyable.
     
  12. drdubs
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    drdubs Silver Member

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    Having recently completed a Europe-Asia trip in F on LX, I can say that the experience was fantastic and a great use of miles. However, I also understand that the newly renovated cabins in LX J are quite nice as well and you can expect great service from the LX crew regardless of the cabin. So, in summary, my recommendation would be LX J if you can manage to get on a newly renovated aircraft, but opt for F otherwise.

    FWIW, I think the A330s all have the new J while the A340s are in transition, though others might have more current information.

    Happy travels!
     
  13. eponymous_coward
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    eponymous_coward Gold Member

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    It's hard to say what "worth" you place on less flying time and adequate comfort as opposed to a superlative experience that involves a less convenient routing/additional time and expense. It also depends on the value you assign your miles- figure a cash value on them (1 cpm, 2 cpm, whatever), and that's the replacement cost in cash.

    I'd probably look at a routing that involved the least amount of fuss/connections more than whether or not I'm getting a massage or a limo to my plane, so I'd probably take the flight in J out of BNE for the first leg, rather than have a separate ticket for a positioning flight (and the potential for something to go wrong).
     
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  14. Tiki
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    Tiki Silver Member

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    For the Costa Rica trip, I will try for NZ J award but likely won't get it and have to fly Y because this trip is just too full-on to be bothered with routing through Asia and adding almost a day on to travel times.

    The Europe trip is when I would want the F redemption, I just wish TG had F service from BNE! For some reason I thought that if your ongoing flight is J, you have to use the J lounge even if you arrive on F. We have no status-using Grand Slam miles for annual leisure trip.
     
  15. Rejuvenated
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    Rejuvenated Gold Member

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    Love the treatments at the Orchid Spa. :)

    For ground experience, there is no doubt the FCT tops everyone else's. But in terms of overall onboard experiences among *A carriers, my top five spots would go in the following order:

    1) NH
    2) SQ
    3) LX
    4) TG
    5) LH

    NH's hardware products are inferior to SQ. But I have been extremely impressed with their onboard service and meals that they are more than enough for me to give them the slight overall edge over SQ. As a matter of fact till this day, I still rate NH F as the best overall F experience in the air among all airlines I have flown F with. Better than both SQ F and CX F.

    However from experiences of redeeming F & J awards using Aeroplan (AC) miles, NH is often quite challenging (I have only been successful only once) while SQ is almost impossible (I have only succeeded in snagging F & J on the 744).
     
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  16. TrippePanAM

    TrippePanAM Gold Member

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    If flying through Frankfurt the difference for LH F is worth it. It is a really impressive product and the Best Star Product in Europe
    note* i include Tk in europe

    (I would put LH over LX) since LX has the new fully lie flight seats in J, but that is just me.

    All most of the F products are really good and it is a trip you will not forget. I would also advice not to redem for UA F
     
  17. NYBanker
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    NYBanker Gold Member

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    Thinking about my earlier post (about not wasting on UA or CA F), and some of the other subsequent posts, if miles are aplenty for you, then I would still redeem f on these carriers over j if an option. I'd pick any of the other *A carriers over UA/CA, but if these guys had the only non-stop, I'd do it in F if I could...and just set my service expectations accordingly.
     
  18. ohianjo
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    ohianjo Silver Member

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    Just booked VS upperclass back to SYD from HKG... but TG F (all 744) was up for 15,000 more miles... I have done Thai so often this past year, so I thought VS might be a nice change... what do you all think?
     
  19. cennas
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    cennas Gold Member

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    I'd choose TG F for the ground experience in BKK.
     
  20. ohianjo
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    ohianjo Silver Member

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    I do love the massage in BKK, but in my opinion the lounge is just OK... I have only tried TG suites on the 77W... would it be worth doing it on the 747, or try quirky VS?
     
  21. cennas
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    cennas Gold Member

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    I haven't been on VS so can't really compare, and I've only been in TG F on the 747. The seat is ok, not the best out there, but for me F is F is F is F and will always be better than any J service, (well unless it's SQ's J ;) )
     
  22. ohianjo
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    ohianjo Silver Member

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    Well, I can still change I guess... I did check out the herringbone layout of the leased TG 77W... didn't like it (especially after being the only one in F)... VS gives access to clubhouse AND departs at 1920... with TG I will have to be at HKG at around 10 AM for the 12:45 to BKK.... Wonder if that sector is still with ancient F seats (did it in June, but 8AM connection to HKG)
     
  23. kiwi
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    kiwi Gold Member

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    If you don't like herringbone layout why did you choose VS upper class?
     
  24. eponymous_coward
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    eponymous_coward Gold Member

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    Yeah. :confused:

    FWIW, I flew in the TG 77W in C Sunday (TG 922 BKK-FRA). Seat 16 a has some extra space and because it's a bulkhead seat, it's nice and private (I also didn't have an aisle seatmate). Very comfortable in lie-flat (napped easily, and I don't sleep well on airplanes), nice large IFE, food was fine, lots of storage space to stash things. I'd have absolutely no hesitation flying in that seat again- didn't feel "coffin-like", which has been the complaint of people about herringbone (specifically CX's older J seat). It wasn't bad for daytime sitting either.

    I think the EK/OZ Smartium seat (the Solstys) that TG will be putting in their A388s is a touch better/more private, but I can't see why VS's seats would be much better than the ones on TG's...
     
  25. ohianjo
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    ohianjo Silver Member

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    ;) I thought I might at well give VS a chance, because so many of my friends have flown them, more for the service and 'virgin style', than their now rather outdated J product... Also the TG J 77W seat is basically identical to DL/AC J, whereas VS style wise matches NZ (less generic)...
    VS has also started to revamp UC catering, and has the onboard bar...

    Basically I am willing to try VS "to tick the box", but we all know "F is F is F" :confused:
     
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