1st Trip Out of the Country-Costa Rica

Discussion in 'General Discussion | Miles/Points' started by Miagal324, May 17, 2013.  |  Print Topic

  1. Miagal324

    Miagal324 Member

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    Hello everyone, I am a newbie traveler and began accumulating points 6 months ago. I would like to travel to Costa Rica next month but I do not know how to transfer credit card points to airline tickets. I am trying to find the best flight and hotel deals using my points. Thanks for your help.
     
  2. edekba

    edekba Gold Member

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    What kind of points you talking about
     
  3. MX

    MX Gold Member

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    One month is usually pretty tight to plan an award trip. I suggest you specify what type of points and how many you've collected. Then the folks here might be able to come up with some helpful ideas. :)
     
  4. Miagal324

    Miagal324 Member

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    I have Chase cards and American Express cards.
     
  5. Miagal324

    Miagal324 Member

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    Both cards have approximately 100,000 points each.
     
  6. mattsteg
    Original Member

    mattsteg Gold Member

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    What you can do depends on the exact cards you have.
     
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  7. MX

    MX Gold Member

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    You can transfer American Express MR points to British Airways, then use those to buy award travel on AA. I see there's availability in business class in June for MIA-SJO route.
     
  8. NYBanker
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    NYBanker Gold Member

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    Where do you want to fly from? I'll show you some itineraries that will work.
     
  9. thepointstraveler

    thepointstraveler Silver Member

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    Where are you flying from? What places do you plan on seeing in Costa Rica? I just spent a week in Costa Rica in March and it was amazing! Are you looking to spend your time on the beach in a resort? Or will you be spending most of your time sight seeing and are less concerned about how high end the hotel is?
     
  10. flyforawg

    flyforawg Silver Member

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    Assuming MCO-SJO based on your profile. MileSAAver awards are going to be next to impossible, however lots of AAnytime awards on AA +/- 3 days from 8-June 15-June and 22-June.
     
  11. MSPeconomist
    Original Member

    MSPeconomist Gold Member

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    Would it make sense to drive from MCO to MIA and fly from there?
     
  12. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    Neither AmEx nor Chase points can be redeemed directly with AA so AAnytime awards are not viable. Finding flights from MCO to SJO using UA points for June looks pretty wide open right now. Ditto for the return. And that's either in coach or business class. Taking advantage of the Copa flights from MCO-PTY helps, but some routes are via EWR or IAH, too.

    Here's how I would do it:
    1) Use the United website to find the flights which work for you. The 30-day calendar view is pretty useful. Go through the process of booking the reservation and towards the end, on the payment page, click the link to pay by phone. At that point you should get to a page with a reservation number (PNR) on it. You need that reference number; write it down somewhere.
    2) Once you have the PNR you can go to the Chase UR site and initiate the transfer from Chase to United. It is instantaneous IME.
    3) Call in the number on the prior page and give them the PNR. They'll see the reservation and your newly loaded MileagePlus account and they can complete the transaction for you on the phone with no fees.


    It may be slightly fewer points from MIA using Avios but the drive from MCO to MIA sucks and trying to add on the flights between the two adds to the award costs, making it less of a bargain compared to UR/MP points.

    I also would probably do the trip in coach. It isn't that far and the first class service isn't worth the up-charge to me, especially if you fly on Copa where the coach product is surprisingly reasonable.
     
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  13. waqararif

    waqararif New Member

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  14. daninstl

    daninstl Gold Member

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    It would if your using mile based awards like BA as it would be one segment and not two. I would think it would save at least 4500 Avios each way per passenger. If it is a normal award ticket it would be good from any 48 states to the location. In some cases you could even use MCO as a stopover on the way back and book a later to be used leg to another US city but it depends on the program.
     
  15. MSPeconomist
    Original Member

    MSPeconomist Gold Member

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    I was thinking more that if availability were limited out of MCO or if that increased the price in miles, AA should have good service out of MIA, so that flying from MIA rather than MCO could be a way to get an AA award ticket, possibly for fewer miles.

    Sometimes the domestic connecting flights are what limits award availability, not the international segments.
     
  16. daninstl

    daninstl Gold Member

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    AA runs regular flights between the two the last I looked. It would have no effect on the reward miles cost unless through a distance or segment based program like BA. It could effect seat availability. ATL or MIA would be your best bets.
     

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