I have been a Qantas frequent flyer for more than 20 years and had accumulated more than 193,000 frequent flyer points. I was recently emailed by the company that my points balance was now zero. There was no warning that cancellation of the points could happen due to lack of activity for 18 months. I told them I had lost track of time left due to personal reasons and couldn't take my usual flights. Other airlines have the decency to warn frequent flyers of impending cancellations but it seems Qantas can't be bothered. What is worse, I had booked flights with a Qantas partner in November 2013 and with Qantas in January 2014 for flights in 2014 without knowing the points had been cancelled, but they didn't count. Needless to say, the flight I booked with Qantas will be my last with the airline.
We recently finished three months travelling around some of the poorest regions in Europe. Wherever we went, free Wi-Fi was always offered. Three weeks ago, we stayed in an expensive establishment in the Southern Highlands of NSW where Wi-Fi cost $10 an hour, while in chic places like Bowral, all the restaurants and cafes look at you like you come from another planet when you ask if Wi-Fi is available. If we want the tourist dollar in Australia, we must provide up-to-date services.
After a great holiday to Vietnam and Cambodia with my family last month, I was looking forward to returning home to Melbourne. Queues for baggage and customs are to be expected with several flights landing in unison. However, after collecting our baggage at Melbourne Airport, we were herded into one extremely long, snaking line for the exit. This exaggerated queue went around and around columns and walls, with exasperated airport staff yelling at us to, "Keep moving!" Surely Melbourne Airport can devise a more efficient way of exiting the building?
Michael Considine (Traveller, Letters, January 25-26), do you understand what an insurance excess is? As a frequent traveller and travel insurance policy-holder, I have not had a claim in 40 years and I realise you can reduce your excess by paying more premium. And I have never heard anything so ridiculous as getting sicker so you can claim more, since you will still have the excess - unless you are dead. Read your policy and decide your excess, be careful what you eat and drink and pack Imodium.
I read Miranda Corkin's letter (Traveller, Letters, February 1-2) with a sense of deja vu. A few years ago, we travelled British Airways from Britain to Europe and back and from Britain to Australia. On one overnight flight, I approached the galley to ask the flight attendant on duty for a cup of black coffee and a glass of water. She said she was too busy and continued to read her paperback. Complaints to head office were met with a disdainful computer-generated response. It seems nothing changes.
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