Best airline, hub for Melbourne to Rome?

By AusIHLawyer | May 07, 2018, 07:17 PM
Wow! My husband came home tonight with the possibility of a mid December flight to Rome for the whole family (2A2K). I’m keen (obviously!) but want to make good choices for making the most of it. We adults should both be Silver QFF by then (he is already).

I had a quick look and I hate the idea of going to Heathrow and then back to Rome. Not only do I HATE LHR but it is overshooting.

Any suggestions from those who understand the flight maps better than I do? We would need to go to Rome for his work and I’m open to Germany/Austria and also Southern France or possibly Amsterdam.

Looking for any good ideas. Our best trips all seem to be based around his work travel but that’s no reason not to make more of it especially when his airfare and accommodation is covered so we only have to pay the suite upgrade on accomodation plus our 3 airfares.

Looking for your tips and ideas. Exciting times!
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By ajstubbs | May 07, 2018, 08:10 PM
Plenty of good options but i'd probably go via Asia! Cathay are a good option - you can fly their nice new A359 out of MEL. They'll also recognise your QF status and so earn you points. QR is probably the other main oneworld option - A388 out of MEL and, I believe, B789 from DOH to FCO.
If you're not as fussed about your QF status then Singapore Airlines is the other excellent option - A388 out of MEL with their A359 on to FCO :)
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By sanj747 | May 07, 2018, 08:10 PM
I would look at Qatar or Cathay to keep your travels within he Oneworld Alliance.
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By Dredgy | May 07, 2018, 08:44 PM
Via the Middle East is my preferred option. Both Emirates and Qatar are great options service-wise and will earn you Qantas points. You will earn status credits by default on Qatar flights, but not on Emirates. If you book an Emirates flight with a QF flight number though you will earn status.

Both airlines fly to all the destinations you mentioned too.

Singapore, Cathay, China Southern are all decent options depending on budget/how attached you are to loyalty programs/flight timing..

Last edited by Dredgy at May 07, 2018, 08.44 PM.
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By FairDinkum | May 07, 2018, 09:14 PM
Look at flying into Oslo (OSL) or Stockholm (ARN). They're two of the cheapest airports to fly to or fro Asia/Australia from Europe. Not sure how much time you have allotted as it wouldn't be the most direct route but I've saved a lot of money flying to Australia via Oslo.
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By patrickk | May 07, 2018, 09:44 PM
I am sure there is a QF flight number on an EK flight so that is worth checking as well for SCs. But Cathay maybe the first choice.
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By Steve987 | May 07, 2018, 10:12 PM
Cathay on way back from FCO will require a stay over in Hong Kong due to flight timing, at least that was true 6 months ago. That’s not a bad thing necessarily, just something to factor in.
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By Andrew Barkery | May 08, 2018, 01:22 AM
If you are keen on QF status, fly EK from MEL to DXB and then FCO.
Edit: ensure though that you do fly the EK metal QF flight number trips.

If you are keen on SQ, you can get VA miles in the end, by first earning KF miles, then transferring that to VA/VFF miles, but not SC though.

SQ might carry a VA code up to SIN, or even to FCO.

Edit: you can book SQ flights with Flybuys travel, earning you even more FB points, transferrable to VFF.

Personally, I would put the status chase on duty.

If your hubby has enough points, with either, you could go QF MEL - SIN in premY or J with the 380, the kids will get a wow factor from that trip, if they have not flown the 380.

I have flown the EK 380, not the QF 380, but the first time I did it, or the first few times, it did have a wow factor.

MEL QFi J lounge is in the basement, so not that good, but if hubby has WP/P1, the MEL QFi F lounge is bliss. Yes, have done that one too.

A lot of choices, and a good time waster too, setting up a MS-Excel spreadsheet to set up a time table of possible flights, possible hotels, how much to spend, where to stay, ...

Last edited by Andrew Barkery at May 08, 2018, 01.24 AM.
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By Andrew Barkery | May 08, 2018, 01:54 AM
If you want to earn points, (revenue ticket), then maybe MEL - SIN with QF in premY and then maybe AY (FinnAir) from SIN - HEL to get a taste of the various OW services, and then something from HEL - FCO.
Flying QF as a QFF will earn the most QFF points and QFF SC.
Flying OW airline (apart from QF) as a QFF, you will earn less of both QFF points and QFF SC.
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By Ross Tas | May 08, 2018, 07:03 AM
I second the Finnair recommendation Helsinki is an excellent option and Finnair is generally good value for money. The draw back I find is the layover in Singapore or Hong Kong can be a bit long.
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By 346 | May 08, 2018, 08:30 AM
Without being flippant - what's the issue with EK ?
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By silentiger86 | May 08, 2018, 10:59 AM
I am actually flying from Rome to Helsinki then onwards to Asia with Finnair in 2 weeks. Give Finnair a go! Great service and Helsinki is a nice hub to go through - less chaotic than the major European airports!
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By Rufus1 | May 08, 2018, 11:29 AM
SQ/LH. Fly to FRA or MUC, connect to Rome. Then after finishing work, fly back to Germany and take a stopover there, taking advantage of probably the best connected hubs in Europe to get anywhere you want to go.
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By oruspicarous | May 08, 2018, 06:17 PM
You can also go via Bangkok, A350 operates to both Melbourne and Rome so there's plenty of options!
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By Andrew Barkery | May 08, 2018, 08:24 PM
If wanting to fly TG (Thai), join KF (Krisflyer) to earn KF miles, which can then be transferred to VFF.
Personally, now with the end of the VFF and Air NZ program, I have joined KF, can be done online.
Life of miles is 3 years, but if you put your future travel needs to VFF for any possible flights to KF, this should build up the balance to 5,000 KF miles, which can then be transferred to VFF points.
SQ in Y, earnings are low, but points can be earned with various hotel groups to build up the points tally, (Agoda/SingaporeAir) as well.
Nothing wrong with EK, I like the in flight bar! Just they no longer fly a lot of the city pairs I used to use to NZ, those were good QF earning flights, especially in discJ.
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By SeanDardis | May 09, 2018, 08:35 AM
Emirates! I've done the flight a few times over the years. I think the best way to do it is to fly through to Dubai. Airport at Dubai is huge. Then fly through to Rome from there. I think it's about 14/15 to Dubai and then 5 to Rome from there. That would be the best mix.
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