Qantas first class between the US and Australia is one of the toughest awards in the world to snag. In the past I’ve even written a post asking whether Qantas first class award space is a myth. Most airlines have access to Qantas award space ~11 months out, and even when the schedule opens there’s rarely a seat available. Beyond that, it’s rare for Qantas to open up more first class award seats as the departure date approaches, even if the cabin is wide open.
I’ve flown Qantas first class several times, most recently between Sydney and Los Angeles, and found it to be a fairly good product. It’s not my favorite first class product in the world, though it’s undeniably the best first class product available nonstop between the US and Australia.
Anyway, at the moment Qantas has quite a bit of first class award space available between Australia and the US starting in February 2016. The most availability is on the following routes:
- Sydney to Dallas
- Melbourne to Los Angeles
There are a very limited number of dates with availability for two people, and also some dates available in the other direction, though the most space is on eastbound flights.
For example, here’s a snapshot of first class award availability between Melbourne and Los Angeles next February:
Meanwhile here’s a snapshot of first class award availability between Sydney and Dallas (which at the moment is the world’s longest flight, until Emirates takes that title early next year):
In terms of booking this, your best bet is to book through either American AAdvantage or Alaska Mileage Plan:
- American AAdvantage charges 72,500 miles for one-way first class between Australia and the US, and you can include domestic connections on American or Alaska for no additional miles
- Alaska Mileage Plan charges 70,000 miles for one-way first class travel between Australia and the US, and you can include domestic connections on Alaska for no additional miles
It’s worth noting that American allows five day award holds, so you can always hold the space now and ticket later (Alaska doesn’t allow free holds, though does allow you to cancel awards without fees until 60 days before departure).
While Qantas first class isn’t the world’s best, as far as I’m concerned, it is by far the best product available between the US and Australia. I don’t remember seeing it this wide open in years now, so I’d suggest taking advantage of this as soon as possible if you’re interested.
Availability won’t last!
So, who’s headed to Australia as a result of this award space?
(Tip of the hat to Canadian Kilometers)