Premium Class passengers who fly long-haul on select airlines may be entitled to a complimentary chauffeur service*. Currently Qantas, Emirates, Etihad, Virgin Atlantic and British Airways offer a chauffeur driven transfer when flying from dedicated metropolitan Australian airports to specified destinations around the globe. The service includes transportation at either end of the flight, and to and from the airport when making a stopover.
This bonus extra can be arranged by Flight Centre’s First and Business Class Experts when booking premium airline travel.
“This exclusive service makes the travel experience all the more comfortable. It's really lovely to have all the transfers organised for the entire journey and not to have to worry about local currency for the taxi when you first arrive at your destination. The included service really sets the tone for the trip and makes the fare even better value when you consider that some airlines offer the chauffeur service on multiple stopovers,” said Emily Sonley, Team Leader of Flight Centre's Premium Travel Experts.
Qantas commenced their chauffeur service in April 2013. At the time, the launch was connected to the global airline partnership with Emirates. Qantas Group CEO Alan Joyce said, “Qantas is pleased to offer this new chauffeur service to our premium customers. We know this door-to-door service will be very well received and it’s a prime example of the kind of benefits customers can expect from the new partnership.” The service is offered to First and Business Class ticketed passengers on select international Qantas flights such as Sydney to Dubai, London and Los Angeles. It is the airline’s intention to offer the service on additional international flights greater than 12 hours throughout 2014.
Branded as Chauffeur-drive, Emirates offers a complimentary airport transfer to First and Business Class passengers who fly into and out of 55 cities around the world. The service must be booked up to 48 hours prior to the flight departure. In Dubai, First Class travellers are provided with a specially-commissioned Mercedes vehicle and Business Class customers receive a luxury Volvo. There are mileage limits for the service – passengers outside a 40 driven kilometre radius from Sydney airport, 60 driven kilometre radius from Melbourne airport and 60 driven kilometres from Brisbane are subject to an excess charge.
Etihad launched their chauffeur service in Australia in 2007 for travellers flying Pearl and Diamond Class to and from Sydney Airport. At the time, Cramer Ball, Etihad Airways’ Country Manager for Australia said, “Etihad has established a reputation for the very highest standards of hospitality and the chauffeur service is a further example of our service quality. We understand that the ground experience is just as important as the service in the air with travelling time to and from airports often leaving passengers feeling pressured, something the chauffeur service totally removes.” In addition to Sydney, the service is now offered for passengers who fly from Brisbane and Melbourne airports, as well as 22 international destinations including Toronto, Shanghai, Singapore, London and New York.
To take advantage of the Virgin Atlantic’s complimentary chauffeur-driven transfers, passengers must be travelling in Upper Class on an adult fare booked into J,D,C or I booking class. The service is offered to 29 destinations around the world including Chicago, New York, San Francisco and Las Vegas. For passengers departing from Sydney, the service is available for flights to London Heathrow and Hong Kong.
In July 2013 British Airways made its foray into complimentary chauffeur-driven transfers with Sydney being named as the first destination. Nicole Backo, British Airways Regional Commercial Manager, South West Pacific said, “British Airways is very proud of our First offering and the elegant and sophisticated experience that we are able to provide to our premium customers throughout their journey. The launch of a chauffeur service in Sydney is an exciting addition to our premium offering, and we look forward to providing our First passengers with the best of British service as they come and go from Sydney.” First Class Passengers must have a return ticket on BA16 and BA15 to be eligible for the service.
*Terms and Conditions apply. For more information, contact Flight Centre’s First and Business Class Travel Experts via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or call the team on 1300 038 785.