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Ticketing On SQ  
User currently offlineKdm From New Zealand, joined Feb 2006, 115 posts, RR: 0
Posted (8 years 1 week ago) and read 3535 times:

I am sure this applies to many/all airlines but my only recent experience is with SQ.

Almost without exception when I book flights from Singapore on SQ for flights within the next two weeks I am told that no seats are available for at least one of the legs and that I need to be waitlisted.

At first I used to therefore book on another airline like Cathy or BA or anyone else who had seats available as my dates were typically non flexible.

Over the last 6 months however I have retained my booking with SQ when told that I need to be waitlisted and 100 percent of the time seats become available. I have never not managed to get on the flight I wanted.

Lastly my bookings are through an agent (amex) and not direct with SQ, this may make a difference?

So the questions are

1) Are the flights genuinely fully booked or is it just that the agent has limited access to seats?

2) Are they creating a perception of being highly booked when in fact they are not?

3) Does it make commercial sense to say your fully booked and run the risk of losing that passenger to another airline?

4) Is it true that booking deadlines vary from Country to Country, i.e the dead line to pay for the tickets. In the UK I used to pay months in advance for some long haul flights (probably because they were special airfares), In Singapore I used to be able to pay the day before I fly, now I have to pay 7 days in advance.

13 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offline777WT From United States of America, joined Jan 2005, 874 posts, RR: 1
Reply 1, posted (8 years 1 week ago) and read 3517 times:

Quoting Kdm (Thread starter):
Lastly my bookings are through an agent (amex) and not direct with SQ, this may make a difference?

This doesn't make a difference. You have a confirmed booking with them and Amex will be paying them for the tickets. If there was any problems such as you can't transfer or change flights due to this suitation, you can dispute through Amex and they'll take care of you.


User currently offlineLeskova From Germany, joined Oct 2003, 6075 posts, RR: 70
Reply 2, posted (8 years 6 days 16 hours ago) and read 3431 times:

It's the airlines' yield management system - trying to get people to pay a higher fare for a while, and then trying to fill up the seats when it becomes apparent that they won't be booked at a higher fare... as we all know, an airline seat is a commodity that loses it's value the moment a flight is closed: if it's not sold by then, the airline will not make money off of it.

Of course it's a lot more complicated than that, but that's the general idea behind it... but, for example, the opening up of lower booking classes usually stops at a certain level: on most carriers, the lowest fares will not become available again, unless the flight is really seriously under-booked.

The question of when you have to pay does not only depend on the country you're in, but also on the fare you're travelling on - if I look through fare displays these days, I get fares that I could buy just in time so that I could still get to the airport by taxi, but there are others that I'd have to issue 60 or more days in advance - and that's not specific to Germany, those differing rules exist in practically all other countries as well.

General rule: the cheaper the fare, the earlier you have to pay. Of course, like with all good rules, this one, too, has thousands of exceptions...  Wink

Regards,
Frank



Smile - it confuses people!
User currently offlineKdm From New Zealand, joined Feb 2006, 115 posts, RR: 0
Reply 3, posted (8 years 6 days 15 hours ago) and read 3411 times:

I thought it may be something to do with the "yield management system".

However as my trips are all paid for by the Company I am never after the cheap fares, any fare will do provided I can get to my meetings etc.

Personally I think it is because a large number of people book flights with no intention of taking them. I know sometimes this is unavoidable, but I also know of cases where multiple seats are booked (and seats allocated), and then all but one cancelled at the last minute in an effort to have an empty seat next to you.

So another question is do the airlines keep a note of those people that book and cancel a large number of flights?


User currently offlineLufthansa747 From Philippines, joined May 1999, 3201 posts, RR: 43
Reply 4, posted (8 years 6 days 15 hours ago) and read 3409 times:

Quoting Leskova (Reply 2):
and that's not specific to Germany, those differing rules exist in practically all other countries as well.

I guess the problem the OP is facing is because such rules are practically not heard of in Asia. I always book earlier, and pay a few days before the flight here in BKK, including the cheapest TG fares like Q. Some Euro carriers and CX are trying to enforce something nowadays... But why would I book on KLM (saw they now have 60/30/14 days deadlines here) when I can book with TG and pay a few days before the flight if I really want to go...

In fact, I flew PR to MNL 2 weeks ago, the flight was showing J1 Y0, and the A320 had at least 30-40 empty seats.



Air Asia Super Elite, Cebu Pacific Titanium
User currently offlineLeskova From Germany, joined Oct 2003, 6075 posts, RR: 70
Reply 5, posted (8 years 6 days 14 hours ago) and read 3403 times:

Quoting Kdm (Reply 3):
However as my trips are all paid for by the Company I am never after the cheap fares, any fare will do provided I can get to my meetings etc.

I guess it depends on what the definition of "cheap" is here - a $5000 fare can be a cheap fare, if the full fare in that class of service is $8000... with "cheap", I meant anything that's below the standard full fare.

Quoting Kdm (Reply 3):
So another question is do the airlines keep a note of those people that book and cancel a large number of flights?

As far as I know, most airlines will only go after those that have an extremely high book/cancel ratio - just as they'll occasionally contact agencies (which includes websites) that have an extremely high look-to-book ratio, i.e. a lot of flights are looked at, but very few are booked... at least one of the large GDSs charges the airlines per hit (i.e. each time an availability is displayed) and not just per booked segment.



Smile - it confuses people!
User currently offlineFlying-B773 From Singapore, joined Apr 2001, 390 posts, RR: 0
Reply 6, posted (8 years 6 days 10 hours ago) and read 3330 times:

As far as I know, SQ do not keep spares.. if you are buying a high end fare (as paid by company), there should be no problems getting the seats. why keep the seat and waste it?

Also, Why to pay for it earlier? I suppose SQ is facing a problem of large number of no shows likewise for many other airlines.. these are the people who caused you to be waitlisted my dear KDM.. I think with this advance payment 7 days or 3 days before really helps pax who really needs to travel.

Regards,
North


User currently offlineKdm From New Zealand, joined Feb 2006, 115 posts, RR: 0
Reply 7, posted (8 years 6 days ago) and read 3246 times:

Quoting Flying-B773 (Reply 6):
I think with this advance payment 7 days or 3 days before really helps pax who really needs to travel

Yes, I agree, most times my waitlisting comes up 6 days prior to the flight (assuming I have not decided to book on another airline)

Still can't understand why SQ may hold back on a guaranteed booking at full fare unless they have some sort of agreement with large corporates to keep bookings until the last minute.


User currently offlineLufthansa747 From Philippines, joined May 1999, 3201 posts, RR: 43
Reply 8, posted (8 years 5 days 19 hours ago) and read 3191 times:

Quoting Kdm (Reply 7):
Still can't understand why SQ may hold back on a guaranteed booking at full fare unless they have some sort of agreement with large corporates to keep bookings until the last minute.

For the reason that the plane may be full or overbooked 8 days before departure, and non-ticketed bookings auto-cancel at 7 days or whatever deadline the airline has set.



Air Asia Super Elite, Cebu Pacific Titanium
User currently offlineKdm From New Zealand, joined Feb 2006, 115 posts, RR: 0
Reply 9, posted (8 years 5 days 18 hours ago) and read 3182 times:

Quoting Lufthansa747 (Reply 8):
For the reason that the plane may be full or overbooked 8 days before departure, and non-ticketed bookings auto-cancel at 7 days or whatever deadline the airline has set.

Sorry, can't say I agree, I can't believe that 90 percent of the time the flights are over booked, not when you eventually get on the flight and see empty seats, and at check in often get told that they will block the seat next to me to keep it free.

That said it is a great problem for an airline to have, to many passengers 90 percent of the time, most airlines would dream of this sort of yeald.


User currently offlineNimish From India, joined Feb 2005, 3171 posts, RR: 9
Reply 10, posted (8 years 4 days 20 hours ago) and read 3083 times:

This is very routine when our travel agents make bookings on airlines like LH/SQ/TG etc. It's almost impossible to get a completely confirmed itin on a lower economy classes even 1-2 months in advance, though the higher econ classes have lots of seats available.

That said, you keep the booking with the WL sectors, add in your FFP status, and have the travel agent pester the airline on a daily basis, and you often get the needed confirmations (with the caveat that ticketing is to be completed immediately).

As an aside, there's this mysterious "Confirmed from Waitlist" status that shows up on your itinerary for a little while, before moving to "confirmed". I've never understood what "confirmed from waitlist" indicates! Any information on this folks?



Latest Trip Report - GoAir BLR-BOM-BLR
User currently offlineZvezda From Lithuania, joined Aug 2004, 10511 posts, RR: 64
Reply 11, posted (8 years 4 days 19 hours ago) and read 3062 times:

Quoting Kdm (Reply 9):
That said it is a great problem for an airline to have, to many passengers 90 percent of the time, most airlines would dream of this sort of yeald.

Actually, having too many passengers with confirmed seats showing up for a flight is not a great problem for an airline to have. Denied boarding is expensive both in direct costs and in customer satisfaction.


User currently offlineLeskova From Germany, joined Oct 2003, 6075 posts, RR: 70
Reply 12, posted (8 years 4 days 18 hours ago) and read 3021 times:

Quoting Nimish (Reply 10):
As an aside, there's this mysterious "Confirmed from Waitlist" status that shows up on your itinerary for a little while, before moving to "confirmed". I've never understood what "confirmed from waitlist" indicates!

If it's what I think it is (haven't seen it in Itinerary displays, just know it from CRSs) it's the following: while you're on the waitlist, your flight segment has the status-code "HL" ("Holding waitList") - as soon as it's confirmed by the airline, the status changes to "KK" ("Kan Konfirm" - or something like that, which is probably what you see as "Confirmed from Waitlist") which then has to be changed to "HK" ("Holding Konfirmed" - which then shows up as "Confirmed" on your itinerary).

If the "KK" status is not confirmed/changed to HK within 72 hours, the airline - in principle - has the right to withdraw the confirmation and put you back on the waitlist...

Hope that helps...

Regards,
Frank



Smile - it confuses people!
User currently offlineNimish From India, joined Feb 2005, 3171 posts, RR: 9
Reply 13, posted (8 years 4 days 17 hours ago) and read 2998 times:

Quoting Leskova (Reply 12):
as soon as it's confirmed by the airline, the status changes to "KK" ("Kan Konfirm" - or something like that, which is probably what you see as "Confirmed from Waitlist") which then has to be changed to "HK" ("Holding Konfirmed" - which then shows up as "Confirmed" on your itinerary).

If the "KK" status is not confirmed/changed to HK within 72 hours, the airline - in principle - has the right to withdraw the confirmation and put you back on the waitlist...

Thanks a lot - this is definitely what I've seen (many times) on my itinerary. Amadeus (checkmytrip.com) shows the booking as "Confirmed from Waitlist", and then after some time (which is probably the time the agent takes to go and access the booking and update it), it changes to confirmed.

Thanks once again!



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