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Regent Flights - with and without deviation

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30 minutes ago, firefox33 said:

I previously  posted:

After reading through many of these comments, questions and answers, I feel like a cruise rookie even though we been on over a dozen cruises.  We and another couple are going on Regent’s March 2020 cruise from Tokyo to Bangkok. It will be our second cruise on Regent.   On our previous cruise we signed up about 60 days before the cruise so we didn’t really have the “Custom Air” option.   We have just pasted the 270 day mark so we are in the Custom Air window.  There is currently a lot of discussion among the four travelers regarding paying the $175/per person fee for Custom Air.  

Our departure city will be Detroit, a Delta hub.   Delta has a nice direct non stop flight to Tokyo.  Also Delta, partnering with Korean Air, has a one stop (Seoul) return from Bangkok to Detroit.   Some in the group believe Regent being a  “high quality, first class, luxury cruise line” will most certainly book us on these “obviously” convenient flights.   We wouldn’t know until 75 days before the cruise! 

So far Regent hasn’t given us a clue. 

Any thoughts or comments? 

New update and Post;

Regent has  told us that Delta was not discounting either non stop flights and likely will not, and therefore those flights were not available to us.  We decided to take Regent’s offer of a one stop from Detroit, in Seattle, in route to Tokyo.  On the return from Bangkok,  to Seoul, then to Atlanta and finally back to Detroit.   All flights are Delta “flights”, but two are operated by Korean Air, a Delta partner.  We can access and change seats on all the five flights. All are Business or First Class and  five different types of planes:  757, A330, A380, 747 and A321.   Glad that’s done!  

 

Glad all of you  took the advice we provided based on experience and if you couldn't get the non-stops with a deviation, for sure you would not have gotten them at the 75 day mark and almost positive your flights would not have been as good.  Have a wonderful cruise.

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Firefox - one small tip for your BKK and ICN airport stops:  The Korean biz lounges generally have a very limited selection of spirits, but what they do put out includes a very nice Ballantines 17 year old scotch.  Better than what's included onboard Regent.

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We are traveling to Hong Kong from LAX Feb 24. The cruise embarks on March 1 We are doing a deviation. The return is from Tokyo on March 18 to LAX. I want nonstop in both directions. The choices seem to be to Hong Kong Cathay and American. From Tokyo to LAX American , Delta or ANA. This is from Haneda. Travel Cat and Frequent Flyer what do you suggest?

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We really enjoy Cathay Pacific and know that Regent is contracted with them.  I am not familiar with ANA but would select an Asian airline over a U.S. based airline.  The service is typically better (they tend to have twice the number of flight attendants than U.S. based airlines have) and the food is very good.

 

You are fortunate to be able to fly non-stop to both places.  I was raised in Los Angeles and do miss the choice of flights out of LAX (which is another way of saying that I’m jealous😁),  

 

I’ll be interested to learn FlyerTalker’s input.

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Thank you very much Travel Cat. I have enjoyed your posts here on Regent and also on Oceania. This will be our first on Regent after 8 voyages on Oceania. I am inclined to do Cathay to Hong Kong and have not made up my mind about the return fro Tokyo. A friend said the aircraft on American is brand new and quite nice. I am also waiting for input from Flyer Talker as well as my TA. Once again Thanks !

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1 hour ago, ChappChapp said:

Thank you very much Travel Cat. I have enjoyed your posts here on Regent and also on Oceania. This will be our first on Regent after 8 voyages on Oceania. I am inclined to do Cathay to Hong Kong and have not made up my mind about the return fro Tokyo. A friend said the aircraft on American is brand new and quite nice. I am also waiting for input from Flyer Talker as well as my TA. Once again Thanks !

 

Yes - Flyer Talker has some great advice.  We flew one of American's new 787's to Chile and the plane was quite nice.

 

Just looked up TripAdvisors reviews (TripAdvisor is a sister company to Cruise Critic).  Here is their review on ANA https://www.tripadvisor.com/Airline_Review-d8729021-Reviews-ANA-All-Nippon-Airways and here is one for American Airlines https://www.tripadvisor.com/Airline_Review-d8729020-Reviews-American-Airlines.

 

I suspect that FlyerTalker will say that it depends upon the aircraft which is a valid point.  However, flying from Japan on a Japanese airline would likely be wonderful.  However, I still have no clue if Regent is contracted with ANA.  In any case, hope this information is helpful.

 

 

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On 6/28/2019 at 6:35 PM, Travelcat2 said:

We really enjoy Cathay Pacific and know that Regent is contracted with them.  I am not familiar with ANA but would select an Asian airline over a U.S. based airline.  The service is typically better (they tend to have twice the number of flight attendants than U.S. based airlines have) and the food is very good.

 

You are fortunate to be able to fly non-stop to both places.  I was raised in Los Angeles and do miss the choice of flights out of LAX (which is another way of saying that I’m jealous😁),  

 

I’ll be interested to learn FlyerTalker’s input.

We flew with Regent Air on ANA non-stop from Washington-Dulles to Narita this April. Great flight and sensational service.

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Sorry for the delay in posting.

 

For the flight from LAX to HKG, I would go slightly with Cathay Pacific (CX).  The seats in the 777s used by CX and AA are the same basic model and very similar.  AA is a bit "sleeker" and newer, but pretty much six of one, half dozen of the other.  CX has an edge on the inflight service and their lounge at LAX is quite nice.

 

One additional consideration - the AA flight and two of the CX flights leave late at night from LAX and arrive in the morning at HKG between 6 and 7:30/.  CX also has a flight that leaves LAX mid-day and gets into HKG around 7pm.  That might have some bearing.

 

From Tokyo, given the options you mention, I would go with ANA.  Much better seating, with AA and DL following in that order.  Service is also top notch.  One drawback is flight times.  ANA (NH) leaves around midnight and arrives at 8pm.   DL leaves around 4pm and gets in around 10am, AA leaves around 7pm and arrives around 1pm.

 

One other thought you might want to consider is going out to Narita (NRT) and flying Singapore to LAX.  Their flight leaves at 6:30pm and gets in at 12:30pm.

 

Above all else, do some online research on the equipment and service for your various options.  Lots of trip reports and discussion about the specific seats available.  So you might find something that strikes a chord with you.

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On 6/28/2019 at 2:57 PM, ChappChapp said:

We are traveling to Hong Kong from LAX Feb 24. The cruise embarks on March 1 We are doing a deviation. The return is from Tokyo on March 18 to LAX. I want nonstop in both directions. The choices seem to be to Hong Kong Cathay and American. From Tokyo to LAX American , Delta or ANA. This is from Haneda. Travel Cat and Frequent Flyer what do you suggest?

All good advice.  Strongly recommend you provide Regent 2 or 3 options as you are now about 240 days prior to your cruise departure and about 30 days after deviations opened for your cruise.  Never know if Regent has contracts for your route or your proposed flights.  The sooner the better to get the best fights.  Hope you get the flights you want but, need to get your request in sooner rather than later as even with seats on your chosen flights they may all be taken by now.  Don't let checking the airline site for seats will tell you anything about the availability of Regent flights.  Good luck you get the non-stops you want.

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Flyertalker - great to hear the differences in aircraft for Cathay Pacific.  Strongly agree about the service.  And, your suggest for Narita was wonderful - Singapore Airlines is rated one of the top (if not the top) in the world.

 

I would not be on a huge rush to book but would try to do so within the next month.  The longer the wait the fuller the flight becomes.  Regent only has a certain amount of seats on each contracted flight.  However, since you are going non-stop, the odds are greater that you Regent will be able to book the flights without incident.

 

 

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Actually non-stops are the most expensive flights and historically Regent has booked many people on connections because they are less expensive and thus more likely to be part of the contracted flights.  Flights for the March 1, 2020 flights have been available for about 3 months now and who knows if any are still available and in another month more likely to not be available if they ever were available without a huge premium.

 

Got flights for late June 2020 on Singapore that I will be booking in little over a month the day they become available to make sure I get the non-stops we want.  Waiting might work but more chance they are gone if they ever existed with Regent.

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16 minutes ago, rallydave said:

Actually non-stops are the most expensive flights and historically Regent has booked many people on connections because they are less expensive and thus more likely to be part of the contracted flights.  Flights for the March 1, 2020 flights have been available for about 3 months now and who knows if any are still available and in another month more likely to not be available if they ever were available without a huge premium.

 

Got flights for late June 2020 on Singapore that I will be booking in little over a month the day they become available to make sure I get the non-stops we want.  Waiting might work but more chance they are gone if they ever existed with Regent.

 

With all due respect, you have not sailed Regent or had Regent air in several years.  Our experience is likely different than yours.  We have no problem whatsoever booking fights with Regent except - on occasion - when our flight stops in LHR, Frankfurt, etc.  The reason the fights out of European cities to the port city is because people from all over the U.S. (and other countries) are taking flights with the same stops.  Therefore, the flights from the European stop to the port tend to book up so people cannot get the flights that they want.  

 

On the other hand, non-stop flights for ChappChapp, from LAX to Japan will only have passengers from the Southern California area requesting the flight (in addition to others that simply want to fly to Japan).  It should not be an issue.

 

FlyerTalker, if you disagree with my assessment, kindly let me know as I appreciate your knowledge and experience with Regent which is likely equal to or more than mine!  Thanks much.

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10 minutes ago, Travelcat2 said:

 

 

On the other hand, non-stop flights for ChappChapp, from LAX to Japan will only have passengers from the Southern California area requesting the flight (in addition to others that simply want to fly to Japan).  It should not be an issue.

 

 

You are forgetting people from other parts of the US connecting at LAX for Hong Kong.   And don't forget the facts that non-stops are generally more expensive than connections so more likely to be in Regent's Contracts.  And,  how many times have we all seen people in cities with non-stops to the embarkation city and then get routed thru connections, some even going the wrong way before heading overseas.  

 

And, who says Regent has seats on Cathay Pacific for LAX to Hong Kong.  Only Regent knows that answer.  No cost to deviate now or even ask for deviated flights and just not accept them for another month or two and hope they are still available.  Always better to get your flight while they are available if they are available at no additional cost than wait and be disappointed.

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Wow - you should write a book on everything that could go wrong with flights!   I would be willing to be that Regent has seats still available on Cathay Pacific to Hong Kong.  And, no, I have not heard of anyone on a non-stop Regent flight that suddenly get routed through connections.

 

And, what is the point of contacting Regent, asking for your desired flights and then waiting two months to book????? That is no different than waiting two months to book.

 

Sorry, but I do not understand where you are coming from.  What we do in terms of booking Regent flights has been working for us for years.  We do our research, submit our choices to our TA that submits them to Regent and we almost always get exact what we want (and have never been routed in the wrong direction).  However, people that do not deviate and wait until 75 days prior to the cruise can possibly run into that situation -- I have just not heard of it.

 

I try to answer questions with the most recent and factual information that I can.  When I do not know the answer, I say so (and generally refer the question to Flyer Talker because he regularly sails on Regent).  In my opinion, frequent passengers on Regent have the most up to date information on most things regarding Regent - including air.  

 

I understand that you have experience from the past but things change all of the time.  For instance, one constantly changing airline for Regent passengers to fly is Emirates.  One minute there is an extra fee and the next there isn't.  I thought it was only about where you live but apparently that is not the case.

 

Calling Regent (or having your TA call Regent) is really the only way to get an answer that is 100% correct.  The rest of our answers are based on recent experience with Regent.   

 

Perhaps you should sail on Regent again - it has been a long time and so many things have changed (for the better).  And, Frank Del Rio has done an amazing job with Explorer and Splendor will be even better!  There is much that you have missed!

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Posted (edited)

There is actually a simple answer/explanation for all of this  (ha ha):

 

Any Regent (or other cruiseline) decision on routings/airlines and availabilities is completely dependent upon three factors:

 

1) The existence, or not, of contracts for bulk air tickets with a specific airline

2) The existence, or not, of bulk inventory for the desired routing

3) Whether the cruiseline will sell a non-bulk ticket (at the appropriate upcharge)

 

Any Regent (or other cruiseline) decision on additional price charges (apart from deviation fees) is completely dependent on:

 

1) The contracted price for flights on the originally offered airline/routing

2)  The contracted price for flights on the desired routing (if available under contract)

3)  The "spot" price that a cruiseline might negotiate/obtain for flights not under contract.

 

And yes....that's not a clear, fill-in-the-blank answer.  But it's the way that this works.

 

So walking it through.  Is there a contract with XX airline?  If so, is there inventory for the desired routing?  And if the answer to either is "No", would the airline offer a non-contract ticket to the customer.  Unfortunately, there is minimal transparency, and any information tends to come through specific interactions for specific cruises.  Past ticket information (airline/routing) can provide clues but is rearward looking.  Only current interactions with Regent can help determine the current contract situation. And it becomes even more murky when looking far forward.

 

On to pricing.  Different contracts may or may not have different terms and pricing.  To address the Emirates example, it may be that they have different pricing for different routes/dates.  Thus you could sometimes have a difference, sometimes not.  And there is no way to know that from outside the Regent air department (where it would be a closely held trade secret).  Same for any other airline/routing.

 

So, the upshot is....you can always ask.  Either by proactively suggesting your preferred airline/routing or just saying "what else might you have available".  And you will get back something that ranges from "yes" to "no" with "what about this" in between.   Now comes the price issue.  If there's no difference in the price to Regent, you will likely get no upcharge.  If there's a difference, you'll likely get that upcharge.  And there may or may not be a markup, since there is no transparency into the costs to Regent in the contract.  Even the "included" air may be marked up when it gets rolled into the cruise fare.  And the cruise credit may or may not have a direct relationship to the actual cost of the "unused" ticket to Regent.

 

Wish I could be more definitive, but this is at best a gray area.

 

Finally, in regards to non-stop flights - there is a finite amount of lift between a city pair.  For example, if CX has three 777s per day between LAX and HKG, there's only about 150 business class seats in total.  How are 500 Regent guests going to fit into 150 seats?  Answer - they aren't .  Some will go via SFO or SEA, some will route through Tokyo or Seoul or Beijing or Shanghai or Taipei or whatever.  And remember, the airline will never sell out all or most of their business class seats on a bulk basis when they can get far more for that seat on the open market.  So, even if there is a contract between two cities, not all guests may get that offered to them.  How and why that determination is made is another trade secret - perhaps to high value customers, either by cabin class or by repeat business.

 

 

Edited by FlyerTalker

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8 hours ago, FlyerTalker said:

There is actually a simple answer/explanation for all of this  (ha ha):

 

Any Regent (or other cruiseline) decision on routings/airlines and availabilities is completely dependent upon three factors:

 

1) The existence, or not, of contracts for bulk air tickets with a specific airline

2) The existence, or not, of bulk inventory for the desired routing

3) Whether the cruiseline will sell a non-bulk ticket (at the appropriate upcharge)

 

Any Regent (or other cruiseline) decision on additional price charges (apart from deviation fees) is completely dependent on:

 

1) The contracted price for flights on the originally offered airline/routing

2)  The contracted price for flights on the desired routing (if available under contract)

3)  The "spot" price that a cruiseline might negotiate/obtain for flights not under contract.

 

And yes....that's not a clear, fill-in-the-blank answer.  But it's the way that this works.

 

So walking it through.  Is there a contract with XX airline?  If so, is there inventory for the desired routing?  And if the answer to either is "No", would the airline offer a non-contract ticket to the customer.  Unfortunately, there is minimal transparency, and any information tends to come through specific interactions for specific cruises.  Past ticket information (airline/routing) can provide clues but is rearward looking.  Only current interactions with Regent can help determine the current contract situation. And it becomes even more murky when looking far forward.

 

On to pricing.  Different contracts may or may not have different terms and pricing.  To address the Emirates example, it may be that they have different pricing for different routes/dates.  Thus you could sometimes have a difference, sometimes not.  And there is no way to know that from outside the Regent air department (where it would be a closely held trade secret).  Same for any other airline/routing.

 

So, the upshot is....you can always ask.  Either by proactively suggesting your preferred airline/routing or just saying "what else might you have available".  And you will get back something that ranges from "yes" to "no" with "what about this" in between.   Now comes the price issue.  If there's no difference in the price to Regent, you will likely get no upcharge.  If there's a difference, you'll likely get that upcharge.  And there may or may not be a markup, since there is no transparency into the costs to Regent in the contract.  Even the "included" air may be marked up when it gets rolled into the cruise fare.  And the cruise credit may or may not have a direct relationship to the actual cost of the "unused" ticket to Regent.

 

Wish I could be more definitive, but this is at best a gray area.

 

Finally, in regards to non-stop flights - there is a finite amount of lift between a city pair.  For example, if CX has three 777s per day between LAX and HKG, there's only about 150 business class seats in total.  How are 500 Regent guests going to fit into 150 seats?  Answer - they aren't .  Some will go via SFO or SEA, some will route through Tokyo or Seoul or Beijing or Shanghai or Taipei or whatever.  And remember, the airline will never sell out all or most of their business class seats on a bulk basis when they can get far more for that seat on the open market.  So, even if there is a contract between two cities, not all guests may get that offered to them.  How and why that determination is made is another trade secret - perhaps to high value customers, either by cabin class or by repeat business.

 

 

Thanks so much FlyerTalker for your excellent comments.  You said much more eloquently what I was trying to say about not waiting to deviate and how what might appear to be clear non-stops become connections depending on things that Regent behind the scenes decisions that customers will never be aware of including special privileges connected customers get that others will never experience. .

 

Thus always better to not wait when booking air of any kind as so many unknowns can affect your chosen flights and ultimate costs..

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FlyerTalker - thank you for taking the time to explain all of that.  It is appreciated!

 

In terms of it being "better to not wait when booking air......", is not always true.  Since Business Class seats are prime, they are not selling them out all at once on a bulk basis (if I understand it correctly).  However, when the date of the flight gets closer and there are still available seats, they may sell them "bulk" rather than having "free" upgrades.  

 

This makes me think of our last flight on American Airlines to Chile.  At the 270 day mark, Regent was not given many seats on their 787 flight and therefore it was almost impossible to get seats (we did manage to get them but it took a while).  However, a couple of months later, people were posting that they were on the flight.  

 

Strongly agree that " Only current interactions with Regent can help determine the current contract situation".  In a few months it will interesting to learn if we can in fact get Emirates (if we still are interested it in - we found a flight from Dubai on Lufthansa that isn't bad and will opt for that if there is an uncharge for Emirates.) 

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Thank you so much for this discussion. It is both informative and extremely helpful. Flyer Talker your detailed explanation is logical and spot on. Question LAX to Hong Kong nonstop and Tokyo to LAX nonstop who has the best business class. This is for all of you. A simple vote Cathay, Singapore, 787 American, ANA or any one else. LAX is our home  but could use Narita just want nonstop and the best product. Thank you all for your responses .

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Posted (edited)

Cathay  (Cathay's Hub is Hong Kong). ANA from Japan (not sure if Cathay or Singapore would be contracted with Regent in Japan).

 

 

Edited by Travelcat2

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I read in USA Today that "Google Fights" has "become the reigning champion of online booking, partly because its information is so comprehensive, and partly because the price tracker helps you land the right deal at the right time".

 

Although we've used Matrix-ITA to find fights and it is a good site, after working with Google Flights for a half hour, I seems that this could be better than Matrix-ITA.  

 

The format is a bit different and they show you the "best fights" first and then others.  You can see whether or not Business Class has flatbed seats on the flight and they indicate if flights are typically delayed.

 

If you want to give it a try, here is the website https://www.google-flights.net

 

P.S.  You can book flights on Google Flights which you cannot do on the other site.   

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15 minutes ago, califsealion said:

I was just playing with this and think the site is actually https://www.google.com/flights

 

Thank you.  Both links got me to the same place.  It seems that Google has several sites - one of which I couldn't access.  What do you think of Google Flights so far?

 

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I’ve used Google Flights for years and find it very helpful.  It will show if a codeshare flight is less expensive to book through one airline rather than another.  For example, we found a business class flight that was a couple thousand dollars less if booked through Lufthansa instead of United.  

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