If you are heading down to Australia or New Zealand in the near future, here is a handy hint courtesy of regular HFP commentator (and now Australia resident) Alan.
Qantas has a couple of subsidiaries which operate regional flights:
QantasLink flies between 58 destinations across Australia and Papua New Guinea
JetConnect is the Qantas subsidiary which operates Qantas branded flights between Australia and New Zealand
Reward flights on QantasLink and JetConnect do NOT appear on ba.com when you search for reward seats – only mainline Qantas flights appear.
However, it appears that it IS possible to use Avios to book these services.
The first thing to do is to register for a Qantas Frequent Flyer account via their website. You can then search for availability via the main booking page by ticking the box saying ‘Search Classic Flight Rewards.
As an example, Sydney to Hobart is showing for October 15th out and October 23rd back in Business Class.
Unfortunately, if you go to ba.com then the flight does NOT show up because it is QantasLink.
However, if you call British Airways Executive Club, they CAN find and book QantasLink flights for Avios. You need to tell the agent the flight details – which you have already confirmed from the Qantas site – and it should show as available on their system.
Whilst Alan has not tested this with JetConnect (he has tested it successfully with QantasLink) reports on Flyertalk (and, since the original publication of this article, HFP readers) confirm that the same approach works.
Sydney to Hobart is 646 miles and so falls into the cheapest Avios pricing band of 18,000 Avios in Business. The cash price on the dates I tested above is £664! Even Economy tickets are £182 which makes 9,000 Avios look like a bargain.