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Australia is never going to be one of the cheaper places to fly to in comfort if you’re starting out in the US or in Europe but occasionally we see some reasonable deals pop up and, for travelers who don’t mind a couple of stopovers in either direction, there are some very good oneworld Business Class fares on offer out of Stockholm right now.
Headline Fare Rules
- Minimum 3 night stay required
- Maximum stay is 3 months
- 10 free stopovers permitted – 2 in Hong Kong and 8 in Australia
- Fare valid for travel commencing before 31 December 2020
- Tickets must be issued on or before 31 December 2019
I haven’t been able to find good oneworld fares for travel to Sydney or Melbourne but good fares are available to most other major Australian cities.
Adelaide from $2,568
Brisbane from $2,580
Cairns from $2,572
Perth from $2,564
The routing is what’s probably going to cause an issue for a lot of people as these fares require 2 stopovers and some are overnight.
Here’s an example of an itinerary to Brisbane where the layovers aren’t too bad:
If you have oneworld Emerald status I can think of worse places to spend 5 – 6 hours than the Pier First Class Lounge in Hong Kong….and it’s not like the Business Class lounge in Hong Kong are shabby either.
Based on what I’ve been able to find it looks like the better priced fares begin to appear at the end of October (these screenshots show availability to Brisbane):
Availability in November looks great….
…but it drops off dramatically in December….
…before reappearing in January and February 2020:
Based on the fare rules its possible that these fares will extend past February 2020 as the airlines extend their booking windows into next year.
Finding & Booking The Fares
I found these fares via the ITA Matrix search but you should be able to find them through Google Flight too.
Here’s an example set of search parameters I used:
You can’t book flights through Matrix so, once you’ve found dates which work for you, you’ll have to head over to Google Flights or the airline sites directly.
Here’s a trip to Brisbane priced up on Cathay Pacific:
Where To Credit The Flights
As Cathay Pacific & British Airways are a members of the oneworld alliance these fares can be credited to any oneworld loyalty program…but I suspect most readers will be crediting to the British Airways Executive Club.
The number of Avios you’ll earn will depend on which destination you choose but the big bonus of these fares is that you can earn a stack of Tier Points towards British Airways status.
Here’s how the Tier Point earnings for this trip break down:
- Stockholm – London: 40 Tier Points
- London – Hong Kong: 140 Tier Points
- Hong Kong – Australia: 140 Tier Points
- Australia – Hong Kong: 140 Tier Points
- Hong Kong – London: 140 Tier Points
- London – Stockholm: 40 Tier Points
That’s a total of 640 Tier Points
That’s more than enough Tier Points for British Airways Silver status (although you’ll still need to travel 4 segments with BA to actually get that status) and 43% of the way to British Airways Gold.
If you decide to credit these flights to American Airlines you’ll earn 2 Elite Qualifying Miles (EQM) per mile flown, you’ll earn Elite Qualifying Dollars (EQD) based on the distance traveled and Redeemable Miles (RDM) based on a combination of the distance traveled and your American Airlines status.
If you’re not sure where to credit you flights you should probably check out the wheretocredit website which will give you all the information you need.
Because of the stopovers required these fares aren’t going to suit everybody but if you’re prepared to be flexible (and a little creative) there are some very good deals on offer here.
The service in Cathay Pacific Business Class isn’t as great as some may wish you to believe but the seats on its long-haul aircraft are very similar to those you’ll find on the American Airlines 777-300ERs and the Finnair A350s and they’re a great product to fly in.
Make sure you play around with dates and routings as it’s quite possible that you may be able to build up a longer itinerary and visit more than one Australian city in a single trip.