Qantas' $100 airfares overwhelmed its website. Still, the sale will continue

November 19, 2019 0 By JohnValbyNation

Qantas Airways’ $100 ticket sale Monday for flights between Los Angeles and Australia overwhelmed the airline’s website, leaving many travelers staring at an error page rather than the booking site. The airline apologized for the tech glitch during the sale that kicked off events planned to mark its 100th year of operations.

Despite the problems, the airline will move forward with a second sale Tuesday, this time for airfares from San Francisco to Melbourne or Brisbane. You can reserve starting at 2 p.m. Pacific time at the airline’s 100th Birthday Year Sale. Travel dates are limited to Feb. 24 and 26, and March 2, 4 and 9 for Melbourne, and Feb. 16 and 23, and March 1, 8 and 15 for Brisbane. The sale ends when round-trip tickets — 50 to Melbourne, 50 to Brisbane — sell out.

The airline also plans to offer the same deal (on separate days) for airfares from Dallas/Fort Worth and Chicago.

The first day’s offer got off to a rocky start. Fifteen minutes after the 2 p.m. Monday sale began, Qantas posted this on social media: “We know the site is slow (and we’re working on it) but we still have fares available for $100 each way to Australia when purchased as a round trip. Keep on trying.”

At 4 p.m., Qantas announced the 100 super-discounted tickets had sold out. “We’re sorry if you experienced issues with the website,” the airline said.

For those who missed out, the airline is offering round-trip fares from L.A. starting at $699, a price that’s been matched by Delta and some third-party retailers, according to a search.

The airline, founded in 1920, was called Queensland and Northern Territory Aerial Services Ltd. (QANTAS) and flew its first scheduled mail and passenger flights in 1922, according to the carrier’s website.