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  • goldengirl22 45 posts

    Hello,

    I have 90k Amex points that I am looking on spending reducing the costs of my flights to/from Australia. I would like to do a multi city flight (to/from London and Melbourne/Sydney). As I am planning on going in March and my dates are pretty much fixed to when I can get leave, I can’t seem to find many reward flights available for my dates. So I am thinking of using my points for points + cash redemption. I know it’s not ideal but it will help bring down the costs of my economy or prem economy seats.

    My question is, does anyone know what’s the point per pence conversion for certain airlines going to Australia? Singapore, Cathay, Qantas, Emirates, etc. I have tried to look online but I can’t find much info and I can’t check on each airline/flight unless I have the minimum in that airline account, which I do not.

    Thanks in advance.

    Notmyrealname 55 posts

    “….. my dates are pretty much fixed to when I can get leave,”

    Not a good start when trying to find reward flights TBHO

    What class of travel are you hoping for ?

    nectar collector 285 posts

    There are options with Qatar for economy return to OZ cities for 90k + a few hundred pounds in fees/taxes. Still some availability in Q1 2023 but obviously may not match if you have fixed dates

    goldengirl22 45 posts

    “….. my dates are pretty much fixed to when I can get leave,”

    Not a good start when trying to find reward flights TBHO

    What class of travel are you hoping for ?

    I know, it’s unfortunate but I can’t get flexible times off work. It’s why I thought I would go for the cash+points redemption to bring down the costs instead as it can be used for any seat.

    I’m hoping to go at the highest class I can afford but likely will end up being economy or prem economy.

    Thank you.

    goldengirl22 45 posts

    There are options with Qatar for economy return to OZ cities for 90k + a few hundred pounds in fees/taxes. Still some availability in Q1 2023 but obviously may not match if you have fixed dates

    I will have a look! I hope it matches the dates I need but I know the chances are low.

    BuildBackBetter 705 posts

    https://www.awardhacker.com/

    This website can give you the routes available and miles required.

    goldengirl22 45 posts

    https://www.awardhacker.com/

    This website can give you the routes available and miles required.

    Thank you! I will have a look. Is this only for award flights? Do you happen to know if there is a similar website which miles + cash where I can work out how much discount miles would give me too?

    Thanks.

    BJ 659 posts

    Just off the top of my head I’m guessing 2x one way UK to from Hong Kong on BA and maybe 2x Cathay one way between Hong Kong and Oz. Alternatively do the UK-HK sectors using avios in premium economy using avios and then check LCC between UK and Oz. I’ve seen amazing fares on Scoot lately, also look at Air Asia X and Jetstar.

    goldengirl22 45 posts

    Just off the top of my head I’m guessing 2x one way UK to from Hong Kong on BA and maybe 2x Cathay one way between Hong Kong and Oz. Alternatively do the UK-HK sectors using avios in premium economy using avios and then check LCC between UK and Oz. I’ve seen amazing fares on Scoot lately, also look at Air Asia X and Jetstar.

    I hadn’t thought about splitting the trip up into sectors but look into it! Thanks.

    BJ 659 posts

    Just remember HK is very iffy. Singapore is one zone higher but should be doable in premium economy. Cash and avios works well on premium economy. I am guessing you would not get best Scoot fares direct from SIN but you could take the bus over to KL for a look and start Scoot from there to Oz via SIN for a better fare. SIN is hone of Scoot and KL of Air Asia X so check direct and connecting flights on both airlines from both cities for best deal. If you fancy Bali take Scoot ir Air Asia there for a while, I’m sure there are also excellent budget options and shorter flights between Bali and Oz. Use only one-way sectors on LCC to create good itineraries, there are no advantages in booking returns. Skyscanner (desktop view IMO) is your friend. Happy travels.

    aq.1988 480 posts

    Not sure how fixed your dates are, but I saw availability on 26th March London to Sydney on Qatar, at 45k points plus £245 taxes in Economy (one way).

    There was also 1 business class seat on Qatar available on 28th March for 90k points, plus £404 taxes (again one way). Obviously this would use up all your points, but you’d be getting great value on your points as the cash price would probably be around £6k.

    nectar collector 285 posts

    Another Qatar example is 7-22 March economy London-Melbourne return 90K + £341 fees/taxes…..seem to be quite a few date combinations for this price.

    BJ 659 posts

    The 90k business class fare @aq.1988 spotted would be awesome and probably be my choice if dates worked. If OP could use budget carriers to get back to BKK directly or as smaller sectors with good stopovers then chances are they could get a decent one-way fare back from BKK to UK.

    FatherOfFour 281 posts

    I’ve been looking at a variety of options using cash. Fortunately, I have time on my side as looking at Easter ’24, but with a family of 6, reward options are VERY limited.

    I don’t know your exact dates, but if you are willing to cobble sectors together, there are some (great?) one-way cash deals to be had.
    e.g: If you use LCC or points and a reward saver to travel to Stockholm, you could get PE with BA for £529 as far as SIN. £1000 Business with Finnair.

    From SIN, you might be able to get a QA or SQ reward flight onwards to MEL/SYD/BNE etc. to make use of your points.

    Thai via BKK to Denpasar (Business) and Jetstar on to MEL is also an option from ARN.

    What I haven’t found yet is the sweet spots for getting home!

    The Savage Squirrel 595 posts

    This may be stating the obvious to you, but with limited options due to fixed dates, don’t forget that even with the now worse BA-nectar exchange rate, 90k Amex converts via BA to £594 of Nectar points (so basically £594 cash as you can use it on non-discretionary purchases like food). Don’t accept any cash+points cost reduction that can’t beat this, or even one that is the same or slightly better in cash terms but adds unwanted time and inconvenience.

    aq.1988 480 posts

    OP – if you put the dates that you are looking for or what works for you, it would be useful. There’s quite a few very knowledgeable and helpful people on this forum that might be able to help you. 🙂

    goldengirl22 45 posts

    Thank you for your advice! I know I can make the most of my points if I split my trip up but I would rather fly with only one stop, and with easy connections.

    My dates are flying out on 25th Feb to Melbourne or Sydney, and flying back 17th March from Melbourne or Sydney. To/from London airports. I can take a return flight on the 18th of March but I need to land the same day.

    Thank you!

    FatherOfFour 281 posts

    Useful to know what you’d consider and what you wouldn’t. Are you looking to use the points to reduce the cost of this trip regardless of “perceived value” or are you looking to get “at least 0.7 /0.8 / 1.0p per point?”

    Does overall trip length play a part, or would a long layover on your one stop be acceptable?

    aq.1988 480 posts

    There is availability flying to Sydney on 25th Feb (on Qantas) and returning from Melbourne on 17th with Qatar. If you had a little flexibility on the outbound, you could fly on 23rd Feb with Qatar to SYD, and return a couple days earlier if needed from MEL, again with Qatar. The taxes on Qatar are a couple hundred less than Qantas.

    I checked this on British Airways Executive Club btw – you don’t need any points to check how many points an award flight will require, but just need an account.

    goldengirl22 45 posts

    I wouldn’t mind using the points to reduce the cost of the trip, even if it reduces the ‘perceived value’. Of course, the higher, the better, but it’s not always possible. I don’t have miles with the main airlines who fly to Australia so I can’t log in to make dummy bookings to see how much 90k points would save.

    I am willing to take a longer stopover, perhaps around 5-7 hours max, and only one way ideally. I wouldn’t mind having a 3-5h stopover each way as I will have lounge access with my Amex.

    Thanks.

    DonLee 227 posts

    I would suggest to book with Qatar instead of BA if you fly with Qatar, as you won’t have option to cash upgrade if the ticket is issued by BA.

    NorthernLass 8,237 posts

    So, slightly heretical, but have you considered going the “other way”, given it’s a decent length trip. There’s plenty of award availability to LAX on your dates (and possibly other USA west coast), off peak (you might have to travel Feb 24th or 26th) you might be able to squeeze CW out, PE back out of 90k avios, especially if you can get a few more to top you up to the required amount. Then connect from LAX-SYD if that fits your plans and budget – I don;t know if your points would stretch to a Qantas flight, if there are any, if you went in economy?

    goldengirl22 45 posts

    Thanks for the help!

    Qatar, for my dates, I can only get one way tickets at 45k. The return is always priced at 90k which is annoying.

    Qantas, it is asking for 200k for reward flights.

    I am trying to work out how to see how much 90k would be ‘worth’ in a miles plus cash payment. Unfortunately without miles for either, I cannot see.

    I wouldn’t mi d going via the US as I love flying VA but once again, I can’t see the flights in the website. It crashes when I try, which isn’t handy!

    I’ll try again. I have seen Cathay is the cheapest in cost (just over £1k). If I could see how much 99k would take off in a miles plus cash scenario, I would be interested.

    Thanks again for your help.

    nectar collector 285 posts

    Not sure if it’s practical for you, but Qatar do have 45k availability on 17 March for Adelaide to London

    nectar collector 285 posts

    Qatar flights London – Melbourne return on your dates are showing £330 reduction for using 77k Avios , the nearest option to your 90k, so this isn’t a great exchange rate compared to the approx £600 you could get by cashing them out to Nectar and spending them in Sainsbury.

    You can book cash plus miles using Asia Miles on Cathay but not sure they offer cash and miles with Avios.

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