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Old May 13, 09, 9:34 am   #1
 
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QF - Economy on LAX-SYD - What to Expect?

All,

First off - I looked throughout these pages and couldn't find any thread that was similar, so I figured I'd start one. My apologies if there is already one floating around that has this type of discussion. Point me there and I'll gladly read

Now - I'm curious on a quick comparison between what to expect on a TransPacific flight from LAX-SYD on QF (on the A380), and coming back: MEL-AKL-LAX on QF (on a 747)...

I have flown this route a few times on UA, but since there is a lot of competition on the route now (Delta, V Australia, and of course UA & QF), the cheapest option for my flights looks to be QF.

From looking at the website, it seems like the trip in QF should be nice - and I'd get more service in QF compared to UA. For starters, I'm a UA 1K and a AA PLT...but i'm looking for the cheapest fare on any carrier, so the 1K doesn't get me far when I'm booking a non-upgradable fare on UA.

That said, how does these compare (to other carriers on this route):
1. Service in Flight (Are Alcoholic Beverages complementary?)
2. Seating Arrangement (on both A380 & 747?)
3. Seat Pitch/Entertainment
+ Anything Else?

My last flight on UA from SYD-LAX wasn't great - the seating wasn't great (E+ was the only bright spot), the [alcoholic] drinks were free - but they aren't anymore, Entertainment is a joke and the service was pretty bad. So, if I'm used to that, will I really enjoy QF?

Thanks in advance!!!

-jeremy
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Old May 13, 09, 12:00 pm   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kmfdm91 View Post

That said, how does these compare (to other carriers on this route):
1. Service in Flight (Are Alcoholic Beverages complementary?)
2. Seating Arrangement (on both A380 & 747?)
3. Seat Pitch/Entertainment
+ Anything Else?
(1) alcoholic drinks are indeed free

(2) 3-4-3 on both 380 and 747

(3) 31-32" pitch

Entertainment wise, you will have an individual screen with AV on demand with a pretty large choice of movies/tv shows

Dave
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Old May 13, 09, 1:53 pm   #3
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As an AA Plat (OW Sapphire), you'll be able to load up on complimentary alcoholic drinks in the lounge before you fly, if you so choose.
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Old May 13, 09, 2:48 pm   #4
 
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and also the meals are much better quality and there is a snack on Q bag given out in between meals containg a number of healthy and some not so healthy snacks .
I believe the A380 to be more comfortable than the 747-400

Last edited by bme21; May 13, 09 at 2:50 pm. Reason: looks better
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Old May 13, 09, 2:57 pm   #5
 
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The A380 also has a self service snack bar at the very rear of the aircraft. It has soft drinks and a variety of snacks including fresh fruit. There are 3 smaller snack counters through out the aircraft.

After departure from LAX you will get supper and a breakfast into SYD

What date are you flying to SYD?
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Old May 13, 09, 3:22 pm   #6
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The A380 in economy is the world's best economy service -- by far! Not only is the cabin new, with better seats (the slide-forward shell design) but the lack of noise/vibration and improved cabin pressurization and air quality make a HUGE difference. I'd rather fly economy on A380 than J on 747 (and I say that as someone who usually flies F). The B787 will match the A380 features, but for now the A380 blows away the 747 for inflight comfort (as it does all other aircraft).

As for inflight service and entertainment, QF in Y is an ORDER of magnitude better than UA. Yes, I really think it is 10x better. The large selection of AVOD is about 1000 movies, tv shows and songs -- really impossible to see even 1% of them on a 15 hour flight. When the Oscars were on, they were showing half the Oscar nominated films, for example. About 30 first-run movies (still playing in theatres) and over 100 other movies. With true AVOD for every Y seat.
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Old May 13, 09, 3:39 pm   #7
 
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Thanks for the posts thus far...

It seems that QF makes more sense to me than UA. Basically, all UA would do for me is get me more EQM/RDMs and get the hope for an upgade using a SWU (technically not allowed on the cheapest fares). That and the added bonus of E+ (35" pitch), as I am 6'1".

Obviously, it would be cool to fly on a A380 (I am an airplane geek after all - and I think everyone is on FT )...so experiencing it at least once would be nice!

The self-serve bar sounds nice, and looking at the QF website, an amentity kit for Y passengers seems insane - you barely get anything in C on UA! So, it sounds like my finacee and I will take QF, although to get to LAX from WAS, we'll take UA (with an easy upgrade to F), so that part will be good.

I was counting on lounge access, so that will be nice to see the lounges in SYD & MEL.

Finally, my outbound is 11 Aug

Thanks again for the dialogue!

-jeremy

Last edited by kmfdm91; May 13, 09 at 3:40 pm. Reason: E+ addition
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Old May 13, 09, 6:11 pm   #8
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As posted by spiff there is a business lounge in LAX TBIT that you would have access to as an AA Plat.
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Old May 13, 09, 8:05 pm   #9
 
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Qantas does a very good job on food, drinks, service and entertainment even in coach. The seats are not bad, but it will still be rough as it is compact. It's the best economy I have seen.
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Old May 13, 09, 9:29 pm   #10
 
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If you are used to E+ (even on the 747) QF's Y seating will feel tight if you ask me.......

I'm used to NZ's (34") pitch and that's my view.... YMMV of course!

P.S. Just to mention options.... You can fly LAX-AKL-SYD vv on NZ departing 11 Aug (I punched in 24 Aug as the return just to test prices) for USD $702 per person.. and that's on the 747 both ways (which is better than the 777 in Y IMO!)...

That would of course as a *Gold give you access to the NZ lounges throughout....
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Old May 14, 09, 3:11 am   #11
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by trooper View Post
If you are used to E+ (even on the 747) QF's Y seating will feel tight if you ask me.......

I'm used to NZ's (34") pitch and that's my view.... YMMV of course!

P.S. Just to mention options.... You can fly LAX-AKL-SYD vv on NZ departing 11 Aug (I punched in 24 Aug as the return just to test prices) for USD $702 per person.. and that's on the 747 both ways (which is better than the 777 in Y IMO!)...

That would of course as a *Gold give you access to the NZ lounges throughout....
To back up trooper NZ on the 747 would suit you better, although a longer travel time and you will not get any points on UA for the cheap fares. However you have a much better pitch the QF, great gate-to-gate IFE and decent movie selection, which is less prone to failure than the QF 747 system.
I have not travelled Y on the A380 but I cannot imagine it is that much better than NZ 747.
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Old May 14, 09, 3:49 am   #12
 
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Of course there IS the value of a new aircraft experience! I flew unnecessarily via SIN last year just to get on SQ's 380!!! (I'm a geek, I admit it!) I can totally understand that!

I started flying NZ after a bad experience on QF... and while I realise that is probably pretty rare it was real enough for me.. so my opinion is no doubt a bit skewed.... Sorry!

Regardless of my reason for going to them - NZ's seats/IFE/service on the 747 (particularly) is pretty good though....... Especially after getting lounge access I have come to prefer the AKL stop....... breaks up the trip nicely....

Blackcloud... Don't ALL long haul fares now credit??? I may have that wrong....
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Old May 14, 09, 4:28 am   #13
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kmfdm91 View Post
That and the added bonus of E+ (35" pitch), as I am 6'1".
Once you have a reservation try for seat 80A or 80K. These are window seats but the seat in front of them is missing. You basically get unlimited legroom. These seats are not exit row and are available to be pre-assigned by anyone (even without status).
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Old May 14, 09, 12:33 pm   #14
 
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Again, thanks to everyone for the posts - this is great to read this stuff before booking a trip!

First, I do like NZ and their service and AVOD in the 747. I flew HNL-AKL-SYD last year, and luckily (the captains said it was an anomaly) both flights were on a 747! The AVOD was great, the service was nice and the legroom was decent - I didn't notice it too much...but then again, it was two shorter flights separated by a few days

That said, I'd definitely consider NZ for the flights, and the outbound is super cheap, but the return (for me - 03 Jan 2010) is ridiculously expensive. Tucked in the middle of this return trip is a RTW, leaving from Oz.

I like hearing the good things about QF - I believe for my dates that I'll book QF and endure the trip in Y...get a few RDMs on AA and enjoy the lounges.

In addition, the cheapest fares on NZ do NOT earn EQM or RDM when accruing toward UA Mileage Plus...so if I did in fact fly NZ and accrue towards UAMP, I'd get nothing. I'd get lounge access, but I'll get that during my RTW, since it's *A, and i'll obviously be visiting SYD and MEL

Thanks again - any more insight would be beneficial!

-jeremy
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Old May 14, 09, 2:53 pm   #15
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by trooper View Post
Of course there IS the value of a new aircraft experience! I flew unnecessarily via SIN last year just to get on SQ's 380!!! (I'm a geek, I admit it!) I can totally understand that!
Yet I did not.....in the air that is!!
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