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A reader contacted me asking about flights to Sydney. ” I am looking to book flights to Sydney for Christmas flying out on the 22nd December and back mid January. I have found a good price with Singapore airlines from Oslo for £2100 each. Ideally I would like to fly a oneworld airline like Qatar or even Malaysian as they did have fab offers last month. If you can help or come up with an alternative for less money that would be great.”
AnswerThe simple answer is that there are no better deals flying oneworld at the moment. The prices for Christmas are understandably much higher than usual. If you are willing to wait a month or two to book, there is usually a Qatar sale in April or May. I would expect there to be ex EU fares under £2000 to Australia on Qatar but obviously there is no guarantee. It does usually cover the Xmas period though. If you do decide to wait, make sure you book as soon as the sale starts as those deals are likely to sell out almost immediately for Christmas dates.
I looked at the Singapore deal, which is a great price. Singapore Airlines have a good business class and are part of Star Alliance which should give some decent options to redeem your miles. Are you aware, however, that the Oslo fare means you would have to fly on from Oslo to Copenhagen or Amsterdam then to SIN-SYD? This means with the flight to get to Oslo, it will take 4 flights each way to get to Sydney/London and a considerable amount of time.
The best oneworld deal at the moment is Cathay out of Belgrade at £2836 which stops twice in ZUR & HKG. Air China is also part of Star Alliance and the seats are good, but the food and service don’t have great reviews. They have Frankfurt via Shanghai to Sydney for £1905.
Flying from Heathrow instead of Ex EU
I would also consider Vietnam Airlines for £2187 out of Heathrow. This would be about the same as Singapore Airlines but less travelling with only 2 stops in Hanoi and Hoh Chi Minh city. They are very good with excellent seats and 4* Skytrax rating on a modern Dreamliner. To get that price you would need to book on Ebookers or Expedia and a flight+hotel deal with 1 night’s accommodation. The example price is for a campsite you could just ditch, but you can book any hotel you want as long as Ebookers have it. If you booked with Ebookers, you could also get 5.5% cashback on that and earn £95 Ebookers credit. This effectively brings the price down to £1971 which is about as cheap as you will see out of Heathrow, especially at Christmas. Vietnam are part of Skyteam so you could use the miles for Delta, Air France or KLM for example.
I would also give Trailfinders a call and see if they can do something on an accommodation inclusive deal. You don’t have to book accommodation for the whole time, normally just 1 night.