Where to "connect" in Europe?

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Old Jan 20, 19, 10:35 pm
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Where to "connect" in Europe?

I'm putting together a multi-partner award (or at least trying to) to the Far East and Australia and am just going over the mileage band I was aiming for. Easiest solution seems to be to start from somewhere within Europe but a few hundred miles to the east of London and get a separate Avios flight to there, which has the added bonus of minimising APD.

Anywhere eastwards of about Zurich, Milan or Munich would do. I'd like to avoid an overnight if possible and this will be in January so there are possible weather issues. I would have checked luggage. Where would be the best - and worst - airports to change flights?
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Old Jan 21, 19, 12:52 am
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It seems that you donít really want to connect but start an ex-third country itinerary to minimise the cost. There is a huge thread on Ďback to backs and quick turnaroundsí which compares the situation of almost all European airports. Obviously no back to back for you as you canít be 100% certain youíll be able to short check your luggage from London to Australia but you can see which airports are good and bad to turn around at!
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Old Jan 21, 19, 1:29 am
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If the OP is planning on going via HKG with CX, it might be worth starting the mutli-partner award from there as the surcharges will be considerably cheaper.
HK doesnít allow carrier imposed surcharges.
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Old Jan 21, 19, 2:18 am
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HK changed the regulations and from November 1st 2018, carried imposed surcharged can be levied. I'm not sure how this has impacted Avios redemptions.
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Old Jan 21, 19, 2:33 am
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Surely the question depends on which airline youíre flying to and where, i.e. thereís no point saying GOT is good because you canít fly to Asia from there. (I donít think youíre talking about B2Bs since coming back to London wouldnít help your mileage issue.)

If CX is your plan, they have lunchtime flights from AMS, ZRH, BRU, MXP, FCO, MAD (longer than LON) among others, which makes same day connection doable but a bit risky. They have evening flights from CDG and FRA so that might suit better if there is availability, although those airports are not otherwise known for their user-friendliness.

Or simply go a day or two before and simply take your pick.



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Old Jan 21, 19, 3:38 am
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Originally Posted by orbitmic View Post
It seems that you don’t really want to connect but start an ex-third country itinerary to minimise the cost. There is a huge thread on ‘back to backs and quick turnarounds’ which compares the situation of almost all European airports.

That's why I put "connect" in quotation marks! Thanks for reminding of that thread; I had seen it before but have never needed to look at so I didn't think about it.

Originally Posted by Ldnn1 View Post
Surely the question depends on which airline you’re flying to and where, i.e. there’s no point saying GOT is good because you can’t fly to Asia from there. (I don’t think you’re talking about B2Bs since coming back to London wouldn’t help your mileage issue.)

If CX is your plan, they have lunchtime flights from AMS, ZRH, BRU, MXP, FCO, MAD (longer than LON) among others, which makes same day connection doable but a bit risky. They have evening flights from CDG and FRA so that might suit better if there is availability, although those airports are not otherwise known for their user-friendliness.

Or simply go a day or two before and simply take your pick.

You are right, I should have been more specific. I am aiming for Bangkok for an overland trip so realistically to minimise the mileage, my choices are to go via Doha or Amman. Helsinki direct to Bangkok would have been perfect but there's no availability on the dates I need.

I've looked more and tried to find an itinerary where I can avoid an overnighter, yet there be a later BA flight in time to catch the QR/RJ flight in case the BA flight is cancelled, yet not get up too early! Unsurprisingly, I don't think that exists, so an overnighter is probably the best option.

Last edited by louie-m; Jan 21, 19 at 3:43 am
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Old Jan 21, 19, 4:03 am
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QR have a 3pm flight from AMS, which was a QSuites flight when I took it in December.

I positioned on an 8am easyJet flight for that, which was relatively low-risk from my perspective - I was tempted by the 9 or even 11am but played it safe-ish. YMMV.

Of course no plan is zero risk - if Iíd been travelling a few days later Iíd have been struck by the drone chaos and potentially seen my whole itinerary go down the drain.
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Old Jan 21, 19, 4:25 am
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QR have 16 flights per week from WAW, you can also check CPH sometimes I see qsuite on this route,
positioning to WAW is cheap with wizzair, CPH is also very cheap to find positioning flights
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Old Jan 28, 19, 2:54 am
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Originally Posted by Ldnn1 View Post
QR have a 3pm flight from AMS, which was a QSuites flight when I took it in December.

I positioned on an 8am easyJet flight for that, which was relatively low-risk from my perspective - I was tempted by the 9 or even 11am but played it safe-ish. YMMV.

Of course no plan is zero risk - if Iíd been travelling a few days later Iíd have been struck by the drone chaos and potentially seen my whole itinerary go down the drain.
AMS was too far west, but in the end I went for MUC. Also currently scheduled for QSuites, something I haven't yet experienced. Two BA flights that day before the QR one, so I hope I'll be safe to go for the earlier one.

Thanks for the advice everyone.
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Old Jan 28, 19, 3:05 am
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Originally Posted by louie-m View Post
Also currently scheduled for QSuites, something I haven't yet experienced.
Unless your flights are very soon, take that one with a pinch of salt obviously. QR are notorious for changing equipment (and timetables) on DOH-Europe vv routes with Q Suites coming and going quite frequently.
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Old Jan 28, 19, 4:43 am
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Originally Posted by orbitmic View Post
Unless your flights are very soon, take that one with a pinch of salt obviously. QR are notorious for changing equipment (and timetables) on DOH-Europe vv routes with Q Suites coming and going quite frequently.
It's not until next year, so plenty of time for things to change. Much as it would be nice to try the QSuites, travelling in any business class (Club Europe excepted) is still enough of a novelty for me to make the journey enjoyable.
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Old Jan 28, 19, 6:35 am
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Originally Posted by louie-m View Post
It's not until next year, so plenty of time for things to change. Much as it would be nice to try the QSuites, travelling in any business class (Club Europe excepted) is still enough of a novelty for me to make the journey enjoyable.
Completely agree and it makes a lot of sense!! One thing I'd definitely recommend though is that you DON'T book your short haul flights to MUC till much nearer the dates. With that long to go, I'd say that there is more than 50% chance that the QR times will change and be aware that for any change of under 2 hours, QR will typically show no flexibility at all in terms of rebooking. Conversely, of course, BA wouldn't show flexibility on the short haul either if it is another booking which schedule has been affected. So it is much better to wait till nearer the date and a greater likelihood that your schedule would hold before you book those positioning flights.
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Old Jan 28, 19, 9:54 am
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Originally Posted by louie-m View Post
It's not until next year, so plenty of time for things to change. Much as it would be nice to try the QSuites, travelling in any business class (Club Europe excepted) is still enough of a novelty for me to make the journey enjoyable.
OT question ... But how do you book flights for next year already? I'm looking at flights for Christmas and New year, but they are only available up until around 24/12/2019.

Cheers!
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Old Jan 28, 19, 4:17 pm
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Originally Posted by DYKWIA View Post
OT question ... But how do you book flights for next year already? I'm looking at flights for Christmas and New year, but they are only available up until around 24/12/2019.
Found on BA's or Qantas' website as usual. Plenty of availability from almost every airport I looked at. Married segments though I think, so it might depend where you are trying to go. What is your destination?

@orbitmic - thanks for the advice, very helpful. I would have booked shortly but I'll hold off now.
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Old Jan 28, 19, 5:39 pm
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Iím doing LHR-GOT-DOH-BKK in April, was a fairly good deal <1.4k total incl the LHR-GOT flights in J, but I have built in the weekend in GOT on the way out because it is actually a place I want to visit and also derisks things somewhat- plain connection on the way back on the ground of worst case is just get a new GOT-LON flight.

There were similarly priced options via AY at the time, but I would rather than 2 LH than 1SH then one long LH with the added bonus of more TPs.

Will happily report back once flown, good luck with your options.
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