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ARCHIVE: Cathay Pacific / CX (inc. First and Business Class) award

ARCHIVE: Cathay Pacific / CX (inc. First and Business Class) award

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Old Sep 1, 09, 3:49 pm
  #1  
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ARCHIVE: Cathay Pacific / CX (inc. First and Business Class) award

Hey everyone,

Any experience booking awards for first class on Cathay? Do these typically sell out the first day of availability, which would not surprise me, or do more seats open up later on?

I really want to try out their new First product, and am considering a trip to Hong Kong pretty much just to fly it in at least one direction from any of their U.S. gateways. It looks amazing, but its not easy to find an F award, although plenty of C awards.

Thanks.


----------------------------------------------------
MODERATOR NOTE:


Please feel free to use this thread for questions regarding CX First Class award redemption using AA miles, as well as questions regarding award availability and routings. Please go to the Cathay Pacific Asia Miles Forum to discuss or ask about meals, equipment, service, etc. on CX, as there is an existing wealth of information there - and this is the American AAdvantage Forum .

Other related threads that may be of interest:

http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/ameri...ilability.html

http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/ameri...solidated.html


(If you have any suggestions for other related threads that would be useful for this note, please let the moderators know. Thanks! )

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MAH4546 is offline  
Old Sep 1, 09, 4:49 pm
  #2  
 
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Cathay Pacific / CX (inc. First and Business Class) award - ARCHIVED

I am not the most educated FTer on the subject, but based on what I have read:

1. It's always easier to get 1 seat instead of 2 seats.

2. It may be physically impossible to get more than 2 seats, period.

3. Yes, you should, in theory, have the best luck booking immediately after the seats open up for booking. However, some have reported that certain routes (perhaps less popular/desirable ones) have been fairly easy to snag somewhat recently.

4. Some people purport that additional seats open up at the last minute, but in my brief flirtations with the system, I have not found this to be the case.

5. I see you're based in LAX. If you can't find proper availability from LAX/SFO, you may consider flying to another departure port such as YVR or YYZ, where you *may* have more availability.
trojanman is offline  
Old Sep 1, 09, 5:07 pm
  #3  
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Originally Posted by trojanman View Post
I am not the most educated FTer on the subject, but based on what I have read:

1. It's always easier to get 1 seat instead of 2 seats.

2. It may be physically impossible to get more than 2 seats, period.

3. Yes, you should, in theory, have the best luck booking immediately after the seats open up for booking. However, some have reported that certain routes (perhaps less popular/desirable ones) have been fairly easy to snag somewhat recently.

4. Some people purport that additional seats open up at the last minute, but in my brief flirtations with the system, I have not found this to be the case.

5. I see you're based in LAX. If you can't find proper availability from LAX/SFO, you may consider flying to another departure port such as YVR or YYZ, where you *may* have more availability.
Thanks for the tips. I'm totally unfamiliar with booking awards on partner airlines. I checked all of Cathay's North American gateways, and no luck for late July in F for one or two seats. But C available everyday. Luckily I'm flexible with my dates.
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Old Sep 1, 09, 5:21 pm
  #4  
brp
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My one experience goes as follows:

We were not able to book CX on the outbound (needed 2F/2J) and took AA/JAL to SIN.

On the return,we started out with:

1F HKG-SFO on Jan. 1
1F HKG-SFO on Jan. 2
2J HKG-Vancouver (whichever of the Yxx that is) on Jan. 2

While in SIN and HKG, I called about twice a day...only about 5-6 minutes per day, and got things closer.

Within a couple of days of the return, I had:

2F/2J on the same HKG-SFO flight. Things opened up.

Again, this is a single case, but it does show that these things can happen.

Cheers.
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Old Sep 1, 09, 5:29 pm
  #5  
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It's been pretty easy this year, actually. I booked for March 2010, starting in April 2009. I was able to get two F seats on the morning JFK-HKG flight and seats home two weeks later via SFO. I since changed it to depart via SFO on the outbound (leaving three days earlier than originally booked) and back on the non-stop flights.

Based on my experience checking BA.com (which seems to be 1 for 1 with the CX inventory that AA sees), seats opo up all the time and there is no way to predict it. Just yesterday, I was able to get us seats in F (had been in J) from SIN to HKG because they added 744 flights and was able to move us from HKG-CGK to HKG-DPS (also because a 744 was put on the DPS flight).

In my experience JFK and SFO are offering the best availability. I've seen nothing ex-LAX.
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Old Sep 1, 09, 6:58 pm
  #6  
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I booked in June for early July, so about 3 weeks in advance. I was able to get my first choice, LAX-HKG, immediately. I was able to book HKG-SFO for my return. That wasn't desirable, as AA has no nonstop SFO-SAN service. However, I was willing to buy the domestic flight on another carrier if need be. I set up an AsiaMiles account so that I could easily check online inventory. In a few days, I found HKG-LAX a day later than I wanted. 5 or 6 days before my outbound, I found the return flight on the day I wanted.
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Old Sep 1, 09, 7:09 pm
  #7  
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Used to be quite difficult to secure multiple F seats on a single flight. But I too have 2 F seats booked for YYZ-HKG-MNL-HKG-LHR and did it without too much difficulty.

* I found a perfect AA inventory match for what shows up on the CX AsiaMiles website (and thus what can easily be searched with the KVS Tool)

* Seats come and go all the time, including on a daily basis especially as travel approaches so just keep checking. There's a recent thread in the CX forum where someone kept changing their plans and searching daily, the inventory appears but they needed to buy more miles to secure F, the inventory disappeared while waiting for those miles to post (and the flight was within a week so she couldn't hold the seats), but it came back.. but in the interim there were tons of other options into lax, sfo, jfk, yyz, etc.
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Old Sep 1, 09, 7:32 pm
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In July, I booked two FC seats from YYZ to HKG with no problem at all. Did it about 5-6 weeks prior to travel. As others noted, Asia Miles matched AA for us perfectly. It really was quite nice. We could have booked FC on the way back too, but since with the new one way awards, you can do split classes (and only be charged for such classes), we did BC on the way home. It was nice as well. It should be a very enjoyable trip however it works out!!

Safe Travels.
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Old Sep 1, 09, 7:44 pm
  #9  
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I find that LAX/HKG F seats are the most difficult. YYZ/HKG is usually available, followed by JFK/HKG (which is very different from a couple of years ago when it was impossible to get F award seats on this route). CX F award inventory is a moving target. A seat or two might open up, then go away in a day or two if not taken, then reappear later. My consistent advice is to check every day for what you want, and you'll probably get it eventually. Also, be flexible. If you can't get what you want from LAX or SFO, be open to connecting in YVR, YYZ or JFK. And, of course, if you're in F, one of the benefits will be the longer flight from the east coast!!!
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Old Sep 1, 09, 10:31 pm
  #10  
KVS
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Arrow

Originally Posted by MAH4546 View Post
Thanks for the tips. I'm totally unfamiliar with booking awards on partner airlines. I checked all of Cathay's North American gateways, and no luck for late July in F for one or two seats. But C available everyday. Luckily I'm flexible with my dates.
There is 1 F award seat on 29 Jul:

[KVS Availability Tool 5.0.2/Diamond - CUPID: Awards-Upgrades/CX/Awards]
Code:
YYZ  Toronto Pearson Int'l ON CA [CYYZ]
HKG  Hong Kong Int'l HK [VHHH]
THU  29 Jul 2010 | 1 Seat

Carrier    Flight  From  Depart    To    Arrive    A/C  St  Availability
---------  ------  ----  --------  ----  --------  ---  --  ------------
CX         827     YYZ   09:35     HKG   13:00 +1  773  0   FS+ CS+ YS+
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Old Sep 2, 09, 9:17 am
  #11  
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I was able in June to book F seats JFK-HKG-JFK in September. I have the 10:10 flight out of NYC and the return morning flight out of Hong Kong. There were lots of choices for 1 seat in June for September. I don't know about 2 seats but there were at least 1 for each of the three flights. There are only 18 total seats per day (six per flight, 3 flights) out of NYC (all flights are 77A) so I would not expect to many for rewards.
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Old Sep 2, 09, 12:13 pm
  #12  
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Originally Posted by JTK View Post
I was able in June to book F seats JFK-HKG-JFK in September. I have the 10:10 flight out of NYC and the return morning flight out of Hong Kong. There were lots of choices for 1 seat in June for September. I don't know about 2 seats but there were at least 1 for each of the three flights. There are only 18 total seats per day (six per flight, 3 flights) out of NYC (all flights are 77A) so I would not expect to many for rewards.
In the past when business travel was good and WS was doing well, the JFK-HKG route award was near impossible to get.

In current climate, CX would be better off to offer unsold seats for award redemption - at least it can charge partner for whatever agreed upon rate versus getting 0 to keep it empty.
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Old Sep 2, 09, 12:28 pm
  #13  
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Originally Posted by Happy View Post

In current climate, CX would be better off to offer unsold seats for award redemption - at least it can charge partner for whatever agreed upon rate versus getting 0 to keep it empty.
Now if only SQ would follow this strategy.....
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Old Sep 2, 09, 8:15 pm
  #14  
 
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I'm trying to find SFO - DPS on CX in July 2010 in J or F. Ironically, I can find the seats on the long haul (SFO to HKG) no problem, but HKG to DPS is not showing available. Does anyone know if they hold the "intra asia seats" until later? I thought it would be the reverse.
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Old Sep 2, 09, 9:45 pm
  #15  
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Originally Posted by goldengate View Post
I'm trying to find SFO - DPS on CX in July 2010 in J or F. Ironically, I can find the seats on the long haul (SFO to HKG) no problem, but HKG to DPS is not showing available. Does anyone know if they hold the "intra asia seats" until later? I thought it would be the reverse.
If it were me I'd grab the F award seats longhaul, and maybe even onward somewhere like KUL or SIN where I could grab a cheap flight to DPS. (From KUL you don't even have to go AirAsia, a Qatar KUL-DPS roundtrip should run you ~ US$160 or so, of course Air Asia should be doable for less.)
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