Qatar Airways??

Discussion in 'Before & After the Hunt' started by Dee S, Jun 22, 2017.

  1. whitetail

    whitetail AH Veteran

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    I did have a separate reservation from JoBurg to Bulawayo. So I really wasn't sure what was the problem until after the fact and it would have cost so much money to fix it. So fortunately I was still able to get my rifle there by different means. Not that I would suggest that to anyone ha ha! It was all just very strange because I have been accustomed to the nonstop Delta flight from Atlanta to Johannesburg. So I'm glad that you were able to be able to get your rifle there without problems! I just know that I'm my next flight over I will probably go back to the Delta flight lol!
     

  2. SETH RINGER

    SETH RINGER AH Senior Member

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    Just took a peek at Delta, only booking out to May but tickets start at $862 IAH to JNB., 19-20hrs. Overnite in JNB to catch breath and freshen up and on to WND in the morn.
     

  3. Desert Dog

    Desert Dog AH Veteran

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    This is VERY inaccurate advise. I fly with firearms on BA to Africa and other places and have never had an issue. Just remember a few things;

    1) Stay with one airline and check guns all the way through. Don't split the trip with AA flights.

    2) Call the airline a few days before departure to confirm that you will be taking firearms (this is required).

    3) Once in Joberg, you can only use SAA to transfer with guns to another country in Africa. This is an RSA rule, not BA policy.

    4) If going through Europe, They will not let you fly with guns directly into Zim.

    IF you really are a booking agent you should know these things, which is probably why few use a booking agent anymore. These rules should really be followed with any airline you use.

    Flying on BA from the US to RSA is actually the easiest and most comfortable way to go, and from LAX it is the cheapest (we purchased our round trip tickets for just over $900 per person last year)! I have never had a firearm issue with BA using the above 4 pieces of advise, and neither has any members of my local SCI chapter. London is also a fantastic place for a layover.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 14, 2018

  4. whitetail

    whitetail AH Veteran

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    To Desert Dog: this is accurate advise because the VAST MAJORITY of flights from the US can not be British Airway model planes all of the way- most trips have to be British Airway partners, as I previously discussed. Therefore, I would greatly appreciate you to read the postings more closely. You can find several previous threads on AH regarding the difficulties with British Airways. I am not trying to start a war on this thread- just only provide the most accurate information to its readers. So if you go from LAX to London and then London to JoBurg- ALL flights on an actual British Airways plane- then I agree- you likely won't have much of a problem since it's not differing airlines that are in partnership with BA. But unfortunately, that is usually not able to be done...
     
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  5. whitetail

    whitetail AH Veteran

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    And sense this has become somewhat of a "heated topic"- I'd like to further clarify on my above post. As previously mentioned, most of the BA flights out of the US- unless able to get a BA-only flights all the way to JoBurg which is difficult unless flying initially out of a very large hub here in the US, such as LAX, to Europe (London) then on to JoBurg- you will most certainly find yourself in an "Operated By British Airways" situation wherein another provider, such as American Airlines, will transport you in one or more legs of the trip but you're classified still as using British Airways... This is where the major difficulties arise because of the transfers from (or to) another airline even though your travel listing is still completely being operated by BA. Please do not make this mistake as you will not be able to transfer your firearms. And this is even if the BA agent you are speaking to on the phone says otherwise!!! They are living in England and do not know the "operated by" rules!

    Again, I'm just trying to be of assistance because I know this situation has occured multiple times with hunters traveling to Africa, despite being told otherwise. So, let's have a peaceful end to this debate :)
     
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  6. Desert Dog

    Desert Dog AH Veteran

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    I have to disagree with you on this

    Proof: I did a search, flying on 7/9/17 and returning on 7/16/17 as an example;

    You can fly BA flights (not partners) from Los Angeles, Washington DC, New York, Chicago, Dallas, Philadelphia, Atlanta, Tampa, Miami, San Francisco, Seattle, Denver, Phoenix, Houston, Boston, Las Vegas, San Diego, and Orlando. These are all non-stop flights to London from the united states on BA jets (not partners).

    If you are having a hard time finding a BA flight, I suggest you try their website.

    You are a booking agent????
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 14, 2018

  7. wesheltonj

    wesheltonj AH Elite

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    You left off Austin, TX.
     
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  8. whitetail

    whitetail AH Veteran

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    Desert Dog- you are completely missing the point about what I was saying. Did you not read my posts??? I am from the Midwest- KC, STL, Tulsa, OKC, Northwest Arkansas, and Springfield are all of the major/minor airports near us. Dallas is a 5 1/2 hr drive. So there would be a connecting flight- not BA but "operated by BA" in order to make the connection to a larger hub wherein it would be impossible to bring along a firearm. You have not even read previous posts on this subject on other threads so I am now done answering these comments. It is unfortunate that there are some members of AH who do not do there due diligence in understanding the complete facts and info.... And yes I am- if I weren't, I would not be commenting on experience. So in that, I will not be replying further on this thread. Hopefully others will not be affected- at least those from the Midwest who do not have a BA "hub" close by- by your comments. Again- I urge you to read other threads on this matter. But you won't since you already know everything... I bid you good day
     

  9. Dee S

    Dee S AH Veteran

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    Can I just say, we are all hunters here, on the same side. I started this thread to learn. I have learned a lot from ALL of you, but please, I hate it when these 'harmless' threads turn nasty. I certainly have not traveled to Europe or Africa, for a hunt or otherwise, so all of this information is good information for me.
    Thanks again,

    Dee
     

  10. Lrntolive

    Lrntolive AH Fanatic

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    I had to re-read all these posts because I just returned from a trip to Namibia from Denver.

    My flight was booked through BA all the way from Denver through to Windhoek.

    I spoke with BA extensively about firearms and bows. They were very clear that bows were no issue and could be checked all the way through to my destination because they are considered sporting equipment.

    Firearms, considered weapons, could only be checked through to Johannesburg as long as I was not staying in London overnight. In Johannesburg, the BA flight to Windhoek was being run by Comair, who does not allow firearms or loaded ammunition.

    So, the truth is that BA does allow firearms and ammunition as of my flight on 5/20, but not on their partner carriers. You'd have to contact the partner carrier to see if they allow firearms. Bows, which I believe Dee is hunting with, is no problem whatsoever.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 14, 2018

  11. Philip Glass

    Philip Glass AH ENABLER LIFETIME BRONZE BENEFACTOR AH Legend

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    I know Steve with Travel With Guns recommends them. It sounds like a good deal if you get the bow cars figured out. Call the airline. Your other direct option from Houston is to go through Frankfurt. Always use a travel agent even bows can get tricky in Europe and elsewhere.
    Have fun planning. Namibia is my favorite place.
    Philip
     
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  12. Philip Glass

    Philip Glass AH ENABLER LIFETIME BRONZE BENEFACTOR AH Legend

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    There are so many horror stories on AH of traveling with guns internationally. I would NEVER book my own tickets! For a $200 or less fee you get expert advice on airline and routes and you are much less likely to have your gun taken from you by a Muslim!
    Regards,
    Philip
     
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  13. Philip Glass

    Philip Glass AH ENABLER LIFETIME BRONZE BENEFACTOR AH Legend

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    Don't sit in regular economy on BA! It's bad.
     

  14. Philip Glass

    Philip Glass AH ENABLER LIFETIME BRONZE BENEFACTOR AH Legend

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    Traveling with a firearm is NOT A PROBLEM IF YOU USE A TRAVEL AGENT!!!
    This forum is full of horror stories from people who booked an international ticket online and took their outfitters advice "it will be ok" and had a disaster. I am really sorry for people's misery like are mentioned in this thread but they made a bad decision to go it alone.
    Use a travel agent pay the $200 fee it is the best $ you will spend in a Safari!
    Regards,
    Philip
     
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  15. wesheltonj

    wesheltonj AH Elite

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    I cannot think of any Coach that is good. I have sat in BA coach and frankly its better then any USA carrier and just as good as Emirates. BA's Premium Coach is very good and to me worth the extra money, not quite QANTAS standards but close. Business of BA is fine. The Gulf carriers do have BA beat in Business.

    Some folks do need there hand held, but myself I will never use an agent again. It's not hard. In fact on my last trip to RSA, all the agent was able to do for me was take care of my RSA flights on SAA with a gun. My BA flight, I had to take care of the gun myself with BA directly and that was using an agent.
     
    Last edited: Sep 20, 2017
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  16. Dee S

    Dee S AH Veteran

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    We have booked through Qatar Air. After much research and discussion, we decided to book with them. Couple of reasons, all of the airlines have 'horror stories', all pretty much have a long layover 'somewhere', we are not traveling with firearms, and cost is a factor for us.
    Booked the flights myself, online, for $1190 each, roundtrip, from Houston to Windhoek. That includes the one stop in Doha for nine hours. Total travel time, I think, is like 32 hours? I don't have the flight details with me at the moment, so I'm going off memory.
    I've already booked a hotel for another $69 just a few miles from the airport in Doha. Shuttle fee to and from airport/hotel, another $10 US.
    My daughter had a voice in the decision. After our recent trip to Alaska, that included two layovers on both the trip up and the trip back, she was not in favor of any airlines that had more than one layover. So we are non-stop to Doha, then we'll head to the hotel for hopefully a nap, shower, and a bit of relaxation, and catch the second flight straight into Windhoek, arriving around 9 in the morning.
    Research found that Doha is one of the safest cities in the world, not that we will be out and about during our stop there, but I will be traveling with my 17 year, blonde, attractive daughter, and her safety is very important to me.
    I called Qatar Air several times to discuss traveling with bow and arrows. I have been assured that there will be no problem with them or the cases. We can carry two pieces of check on luggage each, plus a carry on. Many airlines we looked at allow only one check on piece, the second cost an additional fee.
    And again, cost. I'm a normal working guy, currently working as much overtime as my 53 year old body will allow in order to cover the cost of this trip. To upgrade to the next level of comfort, on any airline, was around a $1000 each person. Not worth it to me, and my daughter agreed 100%. She said she'll survive in economy class and she'd rather put that money towards the hit list or other needed trip expenses.
    I know it's a long flight, but I can sleep through just about anything and so can my daughter. We may not be as comfortable as those in first class, but we'll live, and the time spent at the hotel on the layover should help.
    I do appreciate all of the good advice posted.

    dee
     

  17. wesheltonj

    wesheltonj AH Elite

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    Great to hear Dee. Did your flight not qualify for the Hotel and Meal from Qatar? Also, you can earn frequent Flyer miles on either AA or BA. The plus side with earning on BA is you can household the miles, the down side is the fees that BA charges for frequent flyer awards.
     

  18. Dee S

    Dee S AH Veteran

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    From what I read, the Hotel/Meal deal is for a longer stay in Doha? We will have to apply for the transit visa about 30 days out. It's free and allows us to leave the airport. I may look into the hotel/meal deal once we get closer to June, but one odd thing about Qatar Air is they charge you for their 'assistance' which I thought was weird. When I talked to one of the ladies just before I actually booked, she said she'd be glad to book the flights for me but it would cost me an additional fee. I think it was like $25 per person/ticket. I told her I'd save the money and just book myself using their website.
     

  19. Hunter101

    Hunter101 AH Veteran

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    I to like the sound of using Qatar air. Being able to stop and take a break from flying is pretty impressive to me and being able to save around a 1000 bucks. My bow case was lost for a few days by South African on two trips. So my luck has got to change.
     
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  20. Dee S

    Dee S AH Veteran

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    I can't speak for other airlines, well other than Delta who lost my bow case on the return trip from Alaska, as this is our first trip overseas. I just did a bunch of research and that still doesn't make me an expert by any means, but as far as layover destinations and safety, heck, there are terrorists attacks occurring monthly at many of the "safe" cities such as London and Paris, so Doha seems like it's just as safe or safer than any other city.
    Looking into the free room/meal deal with Qatar and from my research so far, you have to book that stuff a couple of weeks out from departure. I'm still months away. I've sent them a message, Qatar Air, inquiring and will try calling when I get the chance. I don't mind saving $200, that's half a warthog, or a jackal, maybe even a baboon if one should be so foolish as to get into bow range.
     
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