What price QFF loyalty?

By GCC05 | May 16, 2018, 04:07 PM

My wife & I recently flew QF91/SB149 SYD-NOU in W for work.


Both were previously QFF Platinum for 8 years until declining long haul product standards & QFF attitudes led us to look elsewhere. We’re still QFF lifetime Gold.


Outbound flight was Qantas metal / operated as an Air Calin codeshare. We had the audacity to book through Air Calin as they were 40% cheaper than Qantas were charging for their own flight. The inbound was Air Calin metal / operated as a QF codeshare.


On the outbound we were refused access to the Sydney Qantas Business lounge due to our crime of booking through Air Calin. This was clarified twice in a civil but curt exchange. As owners of a successful customer-focused business I would question the wisdom of turning away 2 QFF Lifetime Gold members on a Qantas flight on a minor technicality, knowing the taste that would leave.


Or put another way, for not paying an extra $400 each for the questionable privilege of using the crowded QF Sydney Business lounge with its well-known shortcomings. It was no hardship to find breakfast outside of same or better standard than the QF lounge. Nor were we overly fussed about doing so.


Conversely on the inbound, Air Calin allowed us into their modest Hibiscus business lounge in Noumea due to being QF Gold and the flight being a QF codeshare. Even though QFF carries no status nor has any official alliance with Air Calin. And probably done to improve the customer experience.


Makes you wonder if Qantas’ enforcement of technicalities takes priority over the customer experience in the longer term. Or did this episode just confirm what we already thought about their attitude towards QFFs? There has been a definite shift over the past 5 years. I’m sure many will say rules are rules in the corporate world. And customers will correspondingly vote with their feet.

Member who gave thanks

R Kohan

By brettepi | May 16, 2018, 04:14 PM
I'm sure if the CEO was behind the counter they would have let you in without question. The problem is the bellboys don't think big picture..hence the reason they are bellboys and not CEOs.
No member give thanks

By Rxm | May 16, 2018, 05:02 PM
If your not loyal to qantas then I think they might see your lifetime gold as a liability. All the more reason to turn you away.
No member give thanks

By sid | May 16, 2018, 05:03 PM
Unfortunately airport lounges are getting busier and busier so it's no surprise that QF are limiting the passengers allowed in by being very strict with the entry conditions.

Why not take it as a positive and spend that extra $400 on a nice meal and some drinks in the improved food areas in Sydney airport, and maybe even a massage at your destination.
Member who gave thanks

Maximillian Wolthers

By JBL | May 16, 2018, 05:07 PM
That doesn't surprise me. By passing on booking through QF, regardless of the ticket cost, they missed out on revenue that they would have otherwise received. While they could receive payment from Air Calin for passengers accessing the lounge, as far as I understand the lounges at SYD are often packed. They're essentially disincentivising you from not sending money their way, which is fair enough
No member give thanks

By ChrisCh | May 16, 2018, 05:59 PM
The same rules apply in Australia with Fiji Airways, for example, where Qantas Gold members get no lounge access if travelling on an FJ flight number (unless flying Fiji Airways business class which includes lounge access in the fare).

Because you booked direct with Aircalin on an SB flight number, the fact that Qantas codeshares on the flight is irrelevant - as you booked an SB flight number (which means Qantas earns no revenue from the ticket price), and Aircalin isn't a Oneworld alliance member or other strategic partner, Qantas Gold counts for nothing. :)

This is where the AMEX Lounge comes in handy, along with Priority Pass - although Priority Pass only provides food and beverage credit in Sydney international, not a lounge.

Another avenue in Sydney is to pay to access the SkyTeam Lounge at the door, but honestly, for the prices they charge I'd probably rather just visit a restaurant and have a nice meal there!
No member give thanks

By xtfer | May 16, 2018, 10:38 PM
Another avenue in Sydney is to pay to access the SkyTeam Lounge at the door, but honestly, for the prices they charge I'd probably rather just visit a restaurant and have a nice meal there!

Where are these "nice restaurants" you refer to? I'm yet to find them in Sydney International. :)
No member give thanks

By patrickk | May 17, 2018, 02:22 AM
I was refused access to Air France Lounge in Paris in the days they code shared with QF to Singapore with my QF Gold card, so it is not unusual.
No member give thanks

By Doubleplatinum | May 17, 2018, 10:50 AM
It wasn't a "minor technicality" as you put it, you didn't have access to the lounge full stop with the ticket you had. Not sure what being a lifetime gold has anything to do with it? If they broke rules for everybody, like you expected them to do in this situation, the lounges would be chocked full.
Member who gave thanks

Kian Liew

By 11sjw | May 17, 2018, 03:37 PM
You weren't eligible for entry. Out of interest, would you pay the extra next time to be eligible?
No member give thanks

By 346 | May 17, 2018, 03:44 PM
You weren't eligible for entry. Out of interest, would you pay the extra next time to be eligible?

If someones willing to pay $400 a head for airline lounge access, please give me their details
I've got some car indicator fluid & laptop keyboard ink I'm sure they'd be interested in purchasing also.
No member give thanks

By GCC05 | May 17, 2018, 05:59 PM

You weren't eligible for entry. Out of interest, would you pay the extra next time to be eligible?

Definitely not, especially for THAT lounge. We weren't really that fussed as mentioned since it was essentially just a domestic outbound at a civilised hour.

QFF interestingly sent us a questionnaire whilst when Platinum asking many questions which led me to believe there was a groundswell of discontent amongst QFFs. One of the questions related to devaluation of QFF tier status which I definitely think has occurred.

No member give thanks

By pkjames | May 18, 2018, 11:09 AM
Gold or not is irrelevant in this case. Maybe a P1 can give this a try and report back what happens.
No member give thanks

By Jedi | May 18, 2018, 03:06 PM
Gold or not is irrelevant in this case. Maybe a P1 can give this a try and report back what happens.

Just a question. Why would P1 get treated any different under the same circumstances ?. As people have pointed out the "rules are the rules".
No member give thanks

By Nick Sydney 2 | May 18, 2018, 04:06 PM
Happened to me when flying in Fiji air. Platinum and the FJ flight was early on a Saturday but no, the gatekeeper was unmoved!
No member give thanks

By SeanDardis | May 19, 2018, 08:08 AM
Same happened to me - I didn't even realise this when booking on the Qantas website. I arrived with my family having spent 30 minutes getting bumped into as I walked through the Duty Free Shopping precinct. The front desk operator asked "And how do you intend to enter the lounge today sir...". I explained i was a Gold etc... no good, no effect...

I had to do the great walk of shame. I'll know for next time.
No member give thanks

×
×

Forgot Password

If you’ve forgotten your password, simply enter your email address below, then click 'Submit'. We’ll send you an email to re-activate your account and enter a new password.

×