Friday, 26 May 2017

How much difference does it make not to have to arrange your own Uber or Cab to the airport?

Part of the joy of first class travel - is that people do stuff for you. Except, sometimes they don't.

You see, to get the outsourced chauffeur service that is promised by Qantas for its first class passengers - you have to do a bit yourself. First, you need to know that this service exists. Second, you have to contact them - which thanks to the digital age, you can do via the Qantas website.

When you go into 'Manage Bookings', it signals the possibility of the option - and if you click, it will either show or not show the option depending on the eligibility of your booking.

I can't show you that - 'cos I didn't have the presence of mind to take some screen grabs when I was doing it. But here is the info:

This is the standard info - no the screen you see when you are eligible.
What it doesn't tell you is that you need to pre-book - unless you click those terms and conditions links.

The pre-booking process is pretty easy - allowing you to determine how many hours ahead of the flight you want to arrive - I think the maximum is 5. And who doesn't want to spend as much time as possible at the First Class lounge in Sydney?

It even lets your ride from Heathrow to your London destination. I am not sure why - but for us, it listed two different bookings one for each traveler. Probably because I said we had 5 bags. You see there is no way of saying they are small bags, so I guess they think they are all giant and you will need two Mercedes SLR's. (well that's what was booked for us in London!)

The service does call to confirm the day before - so that's good, but it is an outsourced service, so when you ask stupid questions like - 'Where do I need to go at Heathrow to get my chauffeur driven ride?'  - they say you need to contact Qantas.

Well, that's the price of outsourcing. The service within Qantas is not necessarily represented outside it.

In the end, we piled into one of the Merc's at Heathrow. However - both drivers assisted us, and the decision to make it one car instead of two was only taken after they had stowed all our luggage in one.

That delivery to our friends' house in Fulham just put the cherry on the top of our door to door Qantas Frist Class experience.

Tuesday, 16 May 2017

I am a Qantas First Class Virgin

Removing these from my two (small) cases was an emotional experience.

Well, about 24 hours ago, that would have been true.

In fact up until then, I was almost a First Class virgin. That is if you don't count an upgrade certificate from business to first on the return leg Bangkok-Sydney on Thai nearly a decade ago.

Through the diligent saving of Qantas points with a supplement from Amex, nearly 365 days ago, I booked two first class seats on QF1 to London. You see, 2017 happens to be a significant anniversary of my birth. You know one of those which ends with a zero. With the added contribution of points from my partner Mickaeli, we will be returning in about 6 weeks time on a Singapore Airlines A380, in a first class suite.

Collectively, these flights and the 6 weeks holiday in-between has been titled 'The Feast of Stephen'.

Over the next few days, if I can fit it in around our extremely full cultural diary, I will be sharing my thoughts on Qantas's chauffeur service, Sydney first class lounge, spa treatment, and A380 first class cabin and service.

Oh and as well as that, we are looking to some improvements to this website - which I hope to roll out over the next few weeks.

So - if you have been concerned about the lack of activity on this blog for the last few months - be concerned no more.

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