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Old Sep 7, 12, 5:05 am   #1
 
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LHR > LAX Availability

I have a need for 2 UC flights to LAX (one-way) in the latter half of May '13. There is currently good availability, however I will be unable to book for upto another 2 months time until I know specific dates for our event over there.

If this was BA, I would have booked tentative dates however as it is VS, if I cancel I will loose 75% of the miles.

So on that note, I was wondering if anyone familar with the route/availability would care to share if they think I will still be able to find a pair of seats for this time of year at about 6months out?
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Old Sep 7, 12, 8:46 am   #2
 
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Why not book and change for 25?
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Old Sep 7, 12, 9:26 am   #3
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pazza2000 View Post
I have a need for 2 UC flights to LAX (one-way) in the latter half of May '13. There is currently good availability, however I will be unable to book for upto another 2 months time until I know specific dates for our event over there.

If this was BA, I would have booked tentative dates however as it is VS, if I cancel I will loose 75% of the miles.

So on that note, I was wondering if anyone familar with the route/availability would care to share if they think I will still be able to find a pair of seats for this time of year at about 6months out?
You will lose 25% of the miles if you cancel.

As slinky09 says it's only 25 to change dates if you get it wrong first time

I've only flown a couple of times on that route and everytime I've looked\booked there's always been loads of UC capacity.

Last (end of) Maythey were trying to sell upgrades at the airport for the UC cabin.

IMHO you'll be Ok to wait until confirmed dates-but if your nerves can't satnd this then book and chage later for 25, no loss of miles.
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Old Sep 7, 12, 11:10 am   #4
 
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of course the OP runs the risk that no reward seats will open up for him to move into on his desired date (or even close dates) so whilst the 'book something now' option looks good at the moment what happens if no seats do open up for him?
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Old Sep 8, 12, 1:15 am   #5
 
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You know, I never knew that a one time change could be made for 25.00. I just assumed i would lose mileage (25%).

However, as UKTravelbear has pointed out, what if there are not desirable dates left to change to, in which case i should wait until the time I am ready to book with confirmed dates anyway?!

Thanks for the advice
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Old Sep 8, 12, 6:38 am   #6
 
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If you have to be very specific about the dates you travel on, and alternatives are not feasible, then I would look at it this way:

By the time you know what dates you are travelling on, there either will be reward availability or not.

If there is availability, and you have already booked, you lose 25 to switch to your desired flights.

If there is availability, and you haven't already booked, you lose nothing.

If there isn't reward availability, and you have already booked, you are looking at the 25% penalty or being forced to change the flights to a book a different trip altogether.

If there isn't availability, and you haven't already booked, again you lose nothing.

So I'm not sure what you gain by booking the tentative dates?

To answer your last question about availability, it's a difficult one. Having little date flexibility does limit your chances. I would expect outbound availability to be a bit better than inbound. The trick is to look constantly, as I'm sure you know.
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Old Sep 8, 12, 7:47 pm   #7
 
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Originally Posted by blindman View Post
I've only flown a couple of times on that route and everytime I've looked\booked there's always been loads of UC capacity.
I think this is a critical point. On most routes I wouldnt risk it but certainly LHR-LAX (or LHR-NYC) there is consistently good availability right through to last minute.
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Old Sep 8, 12, 8:39 pm   #8
 
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Originally Posted by oliuk View Post
I think this is a critical point. On most routes I wouldnt risk it but certainly LHR-LAX (or LHR-NYC) there is consistently good availability right through to last minute.
Incorrect IME.

LHR-LAX has only 5 days available until the end of the month.
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Old Sep 9, 12, 1:07 am   #9
 
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Originally Posted by at240 View Post
So I'm not sure what you gain by booking the tentative dates?
You risk leaving it till late then finding there is no availability or paying 6,000.
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Old Sep 9, 12, 5:18 am   #10
 
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I only need 2 seats on the LHR - LAX leg which looks like it has slightly better availability. I need to be specific with dates which makes me think it is best to wait, as I will have nothing to loose where as if I guess a date, and I need to move it (which I likely will) to date which has no availability to move it too then I am in this situation of loosing 25%.

Thanks for the insight.
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Old Sep 9, 12, 8:54 am   #11
 
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Originally Posted by slinky09 View Post
You risk leaving it till late then finding there is no availability or paying 6,000.
But OP wants specific dates and only those dates. He gains nothing by booking now unless he guesses them correctly.

If I were him I'd grab the seats straight away, but I can be flexible or switch the tickets to a different trip altogether -- it doesn't sound as though he is in that position.
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Old Sep 10, 12, 3:51 pm   #12
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pazza2000 View Post
I only need 2 seats on the LHR - LAX leg which looks like it has slightly better availability. I need to be specific with dates which makes me think it is best to wait, as I will have nothing to loose where as if I guess a date, and I need to move it (which I likely will) to date which has no availability to move it too then I am in this situation of loosing 25%.

Thanks for the insight.
Of couse an alternative is to fly to SFO and then take an internal flight from there to LAX (such as VX!) or fly into LAX and home from SFO.

It may add to the cost but it gives you more options regarding reward availability.
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Old Sep 11, 12, 5:14 am   #13
 
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Originally Posted by UKtravelbear View Post
Of couse an alternative is to fly to SFO and then take an internal flight from there to LAX (such as VX!) or fly into LAX and home from SFO.

It may add to the cost but it gives you more options regarding reward availability.
Yes, I am perfectly fine to connect down, an overnight in SFO to see friends might even be preferred. However availability to SFO in May '13, at least at present, is not as strong as LAX.

I definetly reckon I will able to move on confirmed dates within 8 weeks time and if availiability is close to what it is now I will be fine
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Old Sep 11, 12, 8:02 pm   #14
 
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Originally Posted by UKtravelbear View Post
Of couse an alternative is to fly to SFO and then take an internal flight from there to LAX (such as VX!) or fly into LAX and home from SFO.

It may add to the cost but it gives you more options regarding reward availability.
The drive from SFO to LAX is one of the nicest in the country.... Take the coastal route.
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