Mini RTW Questions

Old Feb 10, 2013, 8:52 pm
  #826  
 
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Phantom LH Availability?

Trying to switch a UA F flight to an LH F flight that shows up on the AE website. Agent says she can't book it. I told her I had been watching availability and knew the exact day and time it would show up and phoned in immediately when it did. She said she couldn't book it. She suggested that I try again tomorrow and maybe it would be in the system properly. Any ideas? Does that sound right? Sounds odd to me. Is this phantom availability? Any other suggestions? I will try again tomorrow and see what happens. Perhaps the system is just trying to save me some scamcharges
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Old Feb 10, 2013, 8:54 pm
  #827  
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Originally Posted by allbrosca
Trying to switch a UA F flight to an LH F flight that shows up on the AE website. Agent says she can't book it. I told her I had been watching availability and knew the exact day and time it would show up and phoned in immediately when it did. She said she couldn't book it. She suggested that I try again tomorrow and maybe it would be in the system properly. Any ideas? Does that sound right? Sounds odd to me. Is this phantom availability? Any other suggestions? I will try again tomorrow and see what happens. Perhaps the system is just trying to save me some scamcharges
Unfortunately, AE isn't reliable as far as LH F availability. You need to try searching using ANA or LifeMiles (I'm debugging my site to make LM searching show up properly - having some issues today). But if it's more than 2 weeks out, then I wouldn't bet on it - generally speaking, phantom availability will show up on AE's site and you won't be able to book it. Only when it's less than 2 weeks.

[edit] and if it's less than 2 weeks, then it's another story - call every few hours and try other agents. See if you can ask them to "direct book" it. I had an agent pull 2 J seats on LH out of a hat for me that way, was a shocker to both of us.
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Old Feb 10, 2013, 9:07 pm
  #828  
 
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Originally Posted by Pseudo Nim
Unfortunately, AE isn't reliable as far as LH F availability. You need to try searching using ANA or LifeMiles (I'm debugging my site to make LM searching show up properly - having some issues today). But if it's more than 2 weeks out, then I wouldn't bet on it - generally speaking, phantom availability will show up on AE's site and you won't be able to book it. Only when it's less than 2 weeks.

[edit] and if it's less than 2 weeks, then it's another story - call every few hours and try other agents. See if you can ask them to "direct book" it. I had an agent pull 2 J seats on LH out of a hat for me that way, was a shocker to both of us.
I tried the UA site and it shows up there and also shows up on your site, but just on the AE search, not the ANA search. Also asked if she would try to direct book it. She thought she had it but then no. Said they don't like to direct book. Only on emergency. Not sure if she knew what she was doing. I will try again tomorrow.
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Old Feb 10, 2013, 9:09 pm
  #829  
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Originally Posted by allbrosca
I tried the UA site and it shows up there and also shows up on your site, but just on the AE search, not the ANA search. Also asked if she would try to direct book it. She thought she had it but then no. Said they don't like to direct book. Only on emergency. Not sure if she knew what she was doing. I will try again tomorrow.
"don't like" sounds like an excuse.

Play agent lottery and try again. Btw, they're open till midnight, FWIW (although if it only shows up on Aeroplan, that's not a good sign).
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Old Feb 10, 2013, 9:18 pm
  #830  
 
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Originally Posted by Jleonardelli
It's our 25th anniversary so the timing is right to do it while we are in good health

I have 160k AP as prestige member

Leave from YYZ and stop in NRT and Amsterdam or Germany and maybe somewhere else on way back

Any ideas without paying scam charges?

Thanks
Lots of choices in Y. Stick with US,UA,CA,SN,LX,OS,TK,MS,SQ,LO to avoid/reduce scam charges. Asian carriers offer the best service, so if YQ isn't too bad use SQ,NH,OZ,TG. AVOID AC,LH at all costs if you want to avoid largest YQ. Hope that helps some.
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Old Feb 10, 2013, 9:21 pm
  #831  
 
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Originally Posted by allbrosca
I tried the UA site and it shows up there and also shows up on your site, but just on the AE search, not the ANA search. Also asked if she would try to direct book it. She thought she had it but then no. Said they don't like to direct book. Only on emergency. Not sure if she knew what she was doing. I will try again tomorrow.
HUACA! However, as many have said before...if it is not on ANA (or LM - YMMV) it doesn't exist for *A partners. Also LH releases roughly at midnight CET.
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Old Feb 10, 2013, 9:24 pm
  #832  
 
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Originally Posted by Pseudo Nim
"don't like" sounds like an excuse.

Play agent lottery and try again. Btw, they're open till midnight, FWIW (although if it only shows up on Aeroplan, that's not a good sign).
Tried again. Got someone who appeared to be much more knowlegable but again no luck. He tried to direct book and mentioned that the flight I was looking at (LH 470) is one they have had a lot of problems with re phantom availability and they're trying to fix it. He suggested it may open up closer to the date.
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Old Feb 10, 2013, 9:27 pm
  #833  
 
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Originally Posted by Jleonardelli
It's our 25th anniversary so the timing is right to do it while we are in good health

I have 160k AP as prestige member

Leave from YYZ and stop in NRT and Amsterdam or Germany and maybe somewhere else on way back

Any ideas without paying scam charges?

Thanks
To elaborate a little more, IMO unless you go UA or CA TPAC you'll have lots of YQ. From Asia, try to get TK via IST to Europe. Go UA/US/SN/TK Europe to N America. If you don't mind some YQ, go OZ,NH,TG for the service.

Last edited by sp4294; Feb 10, 2013 at 9:57 pm
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Old Feb 10, 2013, 9:29 pm
  #834  
 
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[QUOTE=allbrosca;20223488]Tried again. Got someone who appeared to be much more knowlegable but again no luck. He tried to direct book and mentioned that the flight I was looking at (LH 470) is one they have had a lot of problems with re phantom availability and they're trying to fix it. He suggested it may open up closer to the date.[/QUOTE

Consider setting an EF F alert for LH 470? (but I'm not sure if they actually show M&M member availability, rather than what is available for the rest of us peons - others more well informed will know)
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Old Feb 11, 2013, 12:30 pm
  #835  
 
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Need a tie breaker from the experts

I spent an hour this morning with an AE agent and advised him that I wanted to plan a mini RTW from Ottawa and include Manila, Bom or DEL, and Phoenix on the return. On my own, I had figured that I will need to do Bom or Del as a side trip based on what I had read on FT.
The agent said that Phoenix definitely could NO be included due to excess miles but spent almost an hour to build an itin yow-ord-icn-mn (stp)-sin-bom (stop)-ist-yyz-yow with most of the segments in business class. I was very surprised that I could include Manila and Bom on one RTW but who was I to argue. As a further surprise he told me that Manila will be the point of turn around and therefore it will require 130 K points and not 150 K which is for India.
Based on this I finalized my dates and called back and you guessed it, this is NOT a valid itin.
Spent another hour with the new agent and went back and forth trying to figure out how to maximize the RTW and came back empty. I had thought that I will be able to do yow-ord-icn-mnl(stop)-bkk(stop, and do a side trip to Bom on a separate revenue ticket)-ist-yyz-yow. But according to the agent this too required about 10% more miles than allowed, I asked for yow-ord-icn-bkk (stop with a separate trip to mnl)-Bom (final dest)-ist-yyz-yow.
NO go either, so I am back to square one.
I was also trying to avoid AC or Luftansa to minimize taxes and surcharges.
Before I call AE again, I need some advise from the experts on how best to build a valid itin acknowledging that I will need to do either mnl or bom as a separate trip without the high taxes, surcharges.
The trip is for December 2nd with return to Ottawa around December 18th with some flexibility in dates. These dates were available for two until this morning.
Thanks in advance for any help....
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Old Feb 11, 2013, 12:50 pm
  #836  
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Originally Posted by Retired FF
I spent an hour this morning with an AE agent and advised him that I wanted to plan a mini RTW from Ottawa and include Manila, Bom or DEL, and Phoenix on the return. On my own, I had figured that I will need to do Bom or Del as a side trip based on what I had read on FT.
The agent said that Phoenix definitely could NO be included due to excess miles but spent almost an hour to build an itin yow-ord-icn-mn (stp)-sin-bom (stop)-ist-yyz-yow with most of the segments in business class. I was very surprised that I could include Manila and Bom on one RTW but who was I to argue. As a further surprise he told me that Manila will be the point of turn around and therefore it will require 130 K points and not 150 K which is for India.
Based on this I finalized my dates and called back and you guessed it, this is NOT a valid itin.
Spent another hour with the new agent and went back and forth trying to figure out how to maximize the RTW and came back empty. I had thought that I will be able to do yow-ord-icn-mnl(stop)-bkk(stop, and do a side trip to Bom on a separate revenue ticket)-ist-yyz-yow. But according to the agent this too required about 10% more miles than allowed, I asked for yow-ord-icn-bkk (stop with a separate trip to mnl)-Bom (final dest)-ist-yyz-yow.
NO go either, so I am back to square one.
I was also trying to avoid AC or Luftansa to minimize taxes and surcharges.
Before I call AE again, I need some advise from the experts on how best to build a valid itin acknowledging that I will need to do either mnl or bom as a separate trip without the high taxes, surcharges.
The trip is for December 2nd with return to Ottawa around December 18th with some flexibility in dates. These dates were available for two until this morning.
Thanks in advance for any help....
If it makes you feel any better, the first agent would probably not have been able to actually TICKET the itinerary, despite telling you he "could" do stuff to it. I once spent 3 hours on the phone with an agent who built my whole itin only to come back and tell me the open jaw I sneaked in was invalid, and it would not ticket (despite accepting it earlier).

Looking at the MPM:

Code:
YOW-MNL

    GI      M        5M       10M       15M       20M       25M
 
MPM AT  12801     13441     14081     14721     15361     16001
MPM PA  10154     10661     11169     11677     12184     12692
Code:
YOW-BKK

    GI      M        5M       10M       15M       20M       25M
 
MPM AT  11632     12213     12795     13376     13958     14540
MPM PA  10636     11167     11699     12231     12763     13295
I do not understand why the agent denied this.

YOW-ORD-ICN-MNL is 8,800 miles (out of 10,661 allowed)
MNL-BKK-IST-YYZ-YOW is 11,364 miles (out of 13,441 allowed)

Even if POT becomes BKK, it would still work.

I think you should call again and try again. Maybe there is another reason why this wouldn't work, but MPM should not be it.
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Old Feb 11, 2013, 1:07 pm
  #837  
 
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Thanks for your quick response. Could it be that MNL-BKK-IST-YYZ-YOW is 11,364 miles (out of 13,441 allowed) is being viewed as Trans Pacific and not Trans Atlantic?
Also, ideally we would make MNL as a side trip as opposed to Bom, mainly to get biz class as part of the itin on the Bom route. There are lots more options for mnl as a side trip than for bom!! Any thoughts on this!!







Originally Posted by Pseudo Nim
If it makes you feel any better, the first agent would probably not have been able to actually TICKET the itinerary, despite telling you he "could" do stuff to it. I once spent 3 hours on the phone with an agent who built my whole itin only to come back and tell me the open jaw I sneaked in was invalid, and it would not ticket (despite accepting it earlier).

Looking at the MPM:

Code:
YOW-MNL

    GI      M        5M       10M       15M       20M       25M
 
MPM AT  12801     13441     14081     14721     15361     16001
MPM PA  10154     10661     11169     11677     12184     12692
Code:
YOW-BKK

    GI      M        5M       10M       15M       20M       25M
 
MPM AT  11632     12213     12795     13376     13958     14540
MPM PA  10636     11167     11699     12231     12763     13295
I do not understand why the agent denied this.

YOW-ORD-ICN-MNL is 8,800 miles (out of 10,661 allowed)
MNL-BKK-IST-YYZ-YOW is 11,364 miles (out of 13,441 allowed)

Even if POT becomes BKK, it would still work.

I think you should call again and try again. Maybe there is another reason why this wouldn't work, but MPM should not be it.
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Old Feb 11, 2013, 1:11 pm
  #838  
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Originally Posted by Retired FF
Thanks for your quick response. Could it be that MNL-BKK-IST-YYZ-YOW is 11,364 miles (out of 13,441 allowed) is being viewed as Trans Pacific and not Trans Atlantic?
Also, ideally we would make MNL as a side trip as opposed to Bom, mainly to get biz class as part of the itin on the Bom route. There are lots more options for mnl as a side trip than for bom!! Any thoughts on this!!
I would have some serious difficulty understanding how including IST in a routing could be seen as trans-pacific routing, but I guess worse things have been seen from Errorplan *that* one should be solvable by using another agent, i.e. by playing agent lottery.

I haven't looked up the award charts on MNL vs BOM, but I suspect MNL costs less than BOM, right? I mean, there should be no reason why you would route YOW-ORD-ICN-BKK-BOM-IST etc instead of ICN-MNL-BKK-IST, it's certainly within MPM. Btw, you haven't asked this question and I don't know whether it's relevant, but your point of turnaround does NOT equate to the "highest priced point" on the itinerary - so just because you're going to BOM, which costs 150K, does not make it the POT, therefore allowing you the further-out MPM that BKK brings.
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Old Feb 11, 2013, 1:54 pm
  #839  
 
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MNL is 130K vs. Bom at 150K.
as to why you would route YOW-ORD-ICN-BKK-BOM-IST etc instead of ICN-MNL-BKK-IST, it is because the agent told me that I was over the MPM. As you said, I will try another agent once I have digested the responses to my thread.
I came up with a back up plan which is yow-mnl (stop), one way revenue ticket mnl-bom, Bom(open jaw)-yow.
It is 150K but the dates seem to work for this routing as well as the taxes are very low by using United, Asiana and Turkish airlines, total of approx. $350.00 per ticket. More I think of it, more I think that this might be the best way to minimize extra side trips..
I will wait until tomorrow to see if a better options comes to light, else book it before I loose the dates.
Thanks for the ideas.



Originally Posted by Pseudo Nim
I would have some serious difficulty understanding how including IST in a routing could be seen as trans-pacific routing, but I guess worse things have been seen from Errorplan *that* one should be solvable by using another agent, i.e. by playing agent lottery.

I haven't looked up the award charts on MNL vs BOM, but I suspect MNL costs less than BOM, right? I mean, there should be no reason why you would route YOW-ORD-ICN-BKK-BOM-IST etc instead of ICN-MNL-BKK-IST, it's certainly within MPM. Btw, you haven't asked this question and I don't know whether it's relevant, but your point of turnaround does NOT equate to the "highest priced point" on the itinerary - so just because you're going to BOM, which costs 150K, does not make it the POT, therefore allowing you the further-out MPM that BKK brings.
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Old Feb 11, 2013, 2:35 pm
  #840  
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Originally Posted by Retired FF
MNL is 130K vs. Bom at 150K.
as to why you would route YOW-ORD-ICN-BKK-BOM-IST etc instead of ICN-MNL-BKK-IST, it is because the agent told me that I was over the MPM. As you said, I will try another agent once I have digested the responses to my thread.
I came up with a back up plan which is yow-mnl (stop), one way revenue ticket mnl-bom, Bom(open jaw)-yow.
It is 150K but the dates seem to work for this routing as well as the taxes are very low by using United, Asiana and Turkish airlines, total of approx. $350.00 per ticket. More I think of it, more I think that this might be the best way to minimize extra side trips..
I will wait until tomorrow to see if a better options comes to light, else book it before I loose the dates.
Thanks for the ideas.
I think you may not be allowed to open jaw between MNL and BOM as they are in different IATA zones. This the agent MIGHT not know, but I would think it would be disallowed, unfortunately - you may be required to open-jaw within the same zone. This would mean that you can't even open-jaw to BKK, as that is, once again, another IATA zone.
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