EDIT: It appears that, separately from this sale, Qatar is selling Copenhagen / Berlin to Singapore for £900 return in Business using the MASTERCARD promo code I outline here. This is for May / June departures only, it seems. BA Silver in the bag (almost).
If it only feels like last week that Qatar Airways had a major sale, it is because it was! (Well, nearly – 27th April was the last article I wrote like this.)
A new sale is now live. The good news is that this one has a substantially wider travel window. You can fly from 16th August 2017 to 20th March 2018.
The deals from the UK must be booked by 15th May. The more attractive deals out of Europe must be booked by either 15th May or 22nd May, depending on where you start.
Full details of the UK business class deals can be found here. These deals are not bad, to be fair, with Asia around £1800 – £2000. The cheapest departures are from Edinburgh. London, Manchester and Birmingham are also available.
The best fares will not be found from the UK, however, as you can see from the examples below.
Here are a few of the better headline prices. These deals are all for business class travel via Doha.
These prices EXCLUDE the additional discount for using the promo code MASTERCARD when booking which is still running. This code runs until 21st May so take note if you are looking to book from a sale city where the discounts run until 22nd May.
These prices are NOT the full list of discounts – they are just random examples I picked out. You can use the country links below to check out prices from other popular starting points. The best deals are spread out this time so there is no ‘slam dunk’ choice of the cheapest place to start your trip.
Stockholm to Dubai – £968
Stockholm to Krabi – £1,121
Oslo to Auckland – £1,633
Oslo to Cape Town – £1,356
Oslo to Maldives – £1,248
Helsinki to Krabi – £1,107
Helsinki to Dubai – £833
Frankfurt to Windhoek – £1,078
Berlin to Kuala Lumpur – £1,137
Berlin to Cape Town – £1,289
Berlin to Singapore – £1,277
Berlin to Melbourne – £2,005
Copenhagen to Auckland – £1,676
Copenhagen to Singapore – £1,246
Nice to Tokyo – £1,340 (excellent price for Tokyo)
Paris to Sydney – £2,213
The longer routes would earn 560 British Airways Executive Club tier points return (140 + 140 + 140 + 140) due to the change of plane in Doha. Auckland is 600 tier points. 560 points is more than 90% of what you need for a BA Silver card. Dubai is 140 + 60 + 60 + 140 as the connection books into First Class on a two class plane. Remember, though, that you still need to have taken 4 British Airways flights for cash in your current tier point year before you will be upgraded.
Get a free hotel if you stopover in Doha
Until 30th September, Qatar Airways will give you a free hotel stay if you choose to stop in Doha on the way.
There are two options:
First and Business Class passengers get one free night in a 5-star hotel (add a 2nd night for $50 per room)
Economy passengers get one free night in a 4-star hotel (add a 2nd night for $50 per room)
How to pick a departure city
It isn’t all about the long-haul flight price. You need to add in the cost of getting to your starting point.
More importantly, you need to build in contingency. You need to arrive early enough to ensure that you won’t miss your connection if your inbound flight is late. If that means staying overnight, you need to factor in the cost of a hotel. You may also want to pick an airport with a hotel on the airport to avoid messing about with shuttle buses.
Remember that BA will no longer tag through bags to connecting flights when they are on separate tickets. If you are checking in a case, you will need to fly London to, say, Stockholm, wait for your case, clear immigration, go to Departures, check in your case and clear security again. This will take some time.
Here are the links to the sale pages on the main Qatar European sites:
As ever with Qatar, you should keep an eye on the aircraft. The most modern seats are on the Boeing 787, Airbus A350 and Airbus A380 fleet. I think that the full A330 fleet has been refitted now too. The newer planes have a 1-2-1 herringbone layout where passengers faces away from each other. The Boeing 777 aircraft are fully flat but have a different 2 x 2 x 2 layout. Qatar also uses short-haul planes on some European routes but these are configured with ‘proper’ business class seats.
Here are my Qatar Airways seat and lounge reviews – you will see that I am very positive about them:
- Qatar A380 First Class
- Qatar 777 business class
- Qatar 787 business class
- Qatar short-haul First Class
- Qatar Premium Lounge, Heathrow Terminal 4
- Qatar Al-Safwa First Class lounge, Doha
- Qatar Al-Mourjan business class lounge, Doha
There is always an element of ‘needle in a haystack’ with these sales, but if your plans for the Autumn or next Spring are not yet firm it is worth popping over to the Qatar Airways website and seeing if there is anything interesting.
(Want to earn more Avios? Click here to visit our home page for the latest articles on earning and spending your Avios points and click here to see how to earn more Avios from current offers and promotions.)