According to an exclusive on Australian Business Traveller, Qatar Airways are no longer going to adhere to the draconian oneworld alliance rules on transfer baggage. This is excellent news indeed, especially for people like me who have upcoming travel with the airline.
Why The Big Deal?
Last year the alliance decided to stop checking baggage through to other airlines in the alliance when transferring to another flight on a separate ticket. The reason for this is to prevent airlines being liable financially for baggage lost on tickets they are not earning any revenue from.
You would think the airlines in an alliance as good as oneworld proclaims to be could come to some kind of agreement when it comes to baggage for people using separate tickets but apparently not.
Frequent Flyers Hit Hardest
Frequent flyers are particularly hard hit by this rule. These are the people most likely to book some tickets with cash and others with frequent flyer miles. Essentially this means the alliance is targeting their most savvy flyers which is quite unfortunate.
I am a big fan of transfer baggage and having it interlined through to my final destination. Who wants to go through baggage claim, collect your bag and check in again? Not this little black duck!
AusBT reports that Qatar Airways will allow interlining on separate tickets once again from 1 March 2017. Some airlines in the alliance continue to allow through check when on a separate ticket. These are Cathay Pacific, Japan Air Lines and Malaysia Airlines. Others choose to follow the rule, including American Airlines, British Airways, Iberia and Qantas.
oneworld market themselves as a premium alliance for business travellers. I believe any kind of premium alliance should allow interlining on separate tickets. The other alliances apparently don’t allow this either, but that should be even more reason to differentiate. Airlines are of course free to exceed the minimum alliance standard.
Qatar will allow the transfers as long as minimum connection time at the airport is adhered to which makes perfect sense to me. You would have to be some fool to try to book separate tickets to reduce that!
This is excellent news for me. I am flying Qatar and have some separate ticket connections coming up in April. It will save me a huge headache and a massive amount of stress on what are very long flights to the other side of the world. Utterly delighted would be an understatement! I daresay other people will also welcome this news.
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