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Award Redemption Last Minute CX F Award and how to search

Discussion in 'questions. answers. conversations.' started by nevek, Aug 25, 2017.

  1. nevek

    nevek New Member

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    In the past CX has been very generous releasing last minute F Award and even in some cases releasing their their entire F inventory for award one day before departure.

    Is is still the case?

    Furthermore since BA has been blocking last minute CX Award, what is the best way to search CX awards for < T-3(e.g. 1 or 2 days before departure) days since both JAL as well Qantas limit their search to T-3days before departure

    many thanks
     
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  2. David W

    David W Well-Known Member

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    Setup an Asia Miles account and use Cathay's own website to search is the last thing I can think of. Or call AA to ask about availability.
     
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  3. Andy 11235

    Andy 11235 New Member

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    I'm not aware that Qantas limits searches. I used their calendar feature when organizing a trip recently on CX and saw exactly the flights I expected to (given remaining seats for sale). They're also quite handy for confirming space on BA, given the occasional "phantom space." Make sure you're searching for "classic" awards with flexible dates to get a view of 30-days availability.

    I will say that CX no longer automatically releases F space the way they used to. There is still excellent last-minute availability, but these days they are more likely to hold back on popular days/flights even at the risk of flying out with empty seats.

    The danger with using an asia miles search is that CX availability is significantly better for their own members -- if you're using partner miles you need to be searching on a partner site.
     
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  4. AdamR

    AdamR New Member

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    I'm wondering this myself. I have a flight confirmed in Biz (U fare bucket award ticket via AS Mileage Plan) and my partner is confirmed in First (Z fare bucket award ticket via AS Mileage Plan) on 1 September LAX-HKG. I'm hoping to upgrade into First, too, but here we are at 2-1/2 days out and Expert Flyer shows F2 and A2 availability meaning they have two First seats to sell, but haven't yet released them. Though when I look at the seat map for the flight on Expert Flyer, it shows one F seat for purchase and the other as "blocked".

    I call AS every day to see if award space has become available and Expert Flyer just doesn't show the update (this has happened in the past couple of days for Economy) but still no dice. I'll keep calling but it seems silly that they're holding onto them for this long. I mean, is there really that strong of a market for last minute (48-72 hours) full fare F bookings? Has anyone had luck booking at 36 hours out?
     
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  5. Andy 11235

    Andy 11235 New Member

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    Seat maps for CX show odd "blocked" space, especially close to departure. If expertflyer shows F2, then 2 seats are available. Honestly, seat maps are not an especially accurate indicator of availability. My theory is that elite-only seats for CX show up as "blocked" but I could be wrong.

    And, absolutely it can take until the morning of for seats on CX to be released as awards. I've had AA push ticketing when it was a couple hours before the flight. I wouldn't give up hope until you're literally about to check in at the airport.
     
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  6. AdamR

    AdamR New Member

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    Thanks for the insight! This is the first time I've encountered this issue on CX. But it's also been a while since I've tried to upgrade from Biz to First. Usually I'm just already ticketed there. I'll just keep checking back over the next 36 hours or so and wait until the last minute to pull the trigger on checking-in. But at least I get to use the QF First Lounge since someone in my party is in F. And that's really the important part.

    Also, the seats are now showing up on Expert Flyer as "Premium", so your theory seems sound. They probably won't release those seats until right before the flight just in case some heavy-hitter flyers want to purchase them outright or Marco Polo or Asia Miles members snatch them up. Fingers crossed something opens tomorrow and I can move up.

    Thanks again!
     
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  7. Luis

    Luis Active Member

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    CX availability in general has dried up a lot recently, last minute or not. So even last minute, there's no certainty that there will be space open.
     
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