I really want to know if Qatar Airways is an airline that’s trying to mess with customers…. Perhaps it’s just that they’re an airline with a perpetual ‘asterisk'; meaning that there is always a catch with them. I really love Qatar Airways. When things go right, they go great. Love the new planes. Love the fact that they are representing Qatar to the world. iLoveQatar also applauded the fact that they won a best airline award on our social networks. I try to help them so much that I point out mistakes to them on Twitter so that I can help them improve but this time…. I’m just disappointed. I’m going to talk about two situations.
The extra condition of exclusion
They’ve been advertising a great promotion that they have going on for customers. Sending out newsletters, announcing it in the papers, and even adding it to their website’s homepage.
Buy a ticket to certain destinations in a certain time frame and travel within a certain date, and you qualify. (Already sounds a bit messy with the requirements, but I hope that I’m intelligent enough to figure it out.)
According to the special offers page, if I travel from DOHA to LONDON as an Economy passenger, and I BUY the ticket between 3-31 July 2012 and I travel between 10 July and 17 October, then the price of the ticket is 3,130 QR.
Here’s a screenshot.
So I decide to click on ‘BOOK’. I chose the dates 16 August to 25th of August. (I picked those dates since it’s near the end of Ramadan and I figure that I might as well take some days off and make the most of this great offer). Now my flight is BEFORE 17 October and AFTER 10 July. Today is the 16th of July so I’ve tried to make the booking before 21st of July. However, I’m greeted with the following screen…
The price of the ticket is almost 5,000 QR. That’s a big difference from the special price mentioned right?
So I check out their Terms & Conditions. Besides being a mess to read (there’s something called bullet points you know), I’m disappointed by point 5.
“Promotional fares are not valid during the following period: To all destinations from 16-25 august and inbound flights from 25 August to 10 September”
Another lovely condition applied. This time within the Terms & Conditions themselves. So sadly, I’m unable to make use of this promotion during the end of Ramadan. Of course they know that people will want to be traveling during this period, so they’ve put out a special offer that excludes the travel peak in Qatar itself. *sighs*
The one where ‘Up to’ starts from 0%
So this one is pretty much straight forward. In April, Qatar Airways said that if you book between the 17th and 19th of April, you can save up to 25%.
Their rules? Travel between 20th of April and 6th of June (going and coming). So you’ve literally got 3 days to make a decision for a flight, and you got to go and come back within 2 weeks. It’s tight, but fine.
Now on the 16th of April, I was just playing around on Qatar Airways website and was toying with the idea of visiting Korea. (I’ve always wanted to go there). At the time I had plugged in random dates. I chose 25th to 30th of April. Price of the ticket? 5,760QR. I took a screenshot so that I could remember it for later. (Yes I always take screenshots. I’m a screenshotaholic).
Two days later, the fantastic Qatar Airways promotion is announced. So I think, “hmm, I wonder… if I could save up to 25% off, how much would a ticket be to Korea now”. So I search… Here’s a screenshot of what I find.
On the left we see that the price of the ticket is 5,760QR DURING the promotion. On the right we see the screenshot I took BEFORE the promotion, also at 5,760QR.
So I take a look at the Terms & Conditions just in case. There’s NOTHING that indicates WHY I wouldn’t be elegible. Take a look for yourself, perhaps I’ve missed something.
Long story short… I’m really starting to have my doubts about Qatar Airways promotions… it’s like they’re created just to get you excited and then disappoint you in the end. Comments?