Benefit of getting an extra stopover on an award ticket?

Discussion in 'Newbies' started by Roaddoggin, Dec 3, 2012.  |  Print Topic

  1. Roaddoggin

    Roaddoggin Silver Member

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    So, I refrained from asking this question in the session at FTU as I'm guessing its a complete newbie question, but I seem to be missing something.

    Folks were talking about how great it is that you could fly from LAX to FRA to SIN for the same or less redemption as you might fly from LAX to SIN directly (as an example that may not be entirely accurate).

    So, since I'm under the impression that the airlines typically limit you to no more than a 24 hour stopover, how is this beneficial? You don't earn miles on an award ticket, and with less than 24 hours in FRA, it seems silly for me to spend all that extra travel time. What am I going to do, have some apfelwein and handkäse then get back on the plane?

    I'm not sure if I'm missing something about stopover rules or if I just don't share everyone else's desire to spend unnecessary time in transit.
     
  2. edekba

    edekba Gold Member

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    You're stop in FRA can be greater than 24.


    If it was lax - FRA (stopover) - bkk (less than 24) - sin. You could stay in FRA as long as you want. You're subsequent connectors have to be under 23:59
     
  3. Roaddoggin

    Roaddoggin Silver Member

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    Ah-ha! Is this an industry wide or carrier specific rule? Do you get one unlimited stopover per itinerary?

    Thanks for indulging a newbie.
     
  4. edekba

    edekba Gold Member

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    I know this works for UA.

    AA's stopover has to be at the N. America Gateway ... in your case LAX. (Though I dont think you can do LAX - FRA on AA anyways.) On AA your best bet will most likely be: LAX - NYC (stopover) - LHR/MAD - (HKG maybe) SIN. Or as milevalue and other people have pointed out. Book LAX - LHR/MAD - SIN - LHR/MAD - LAX and then either go somewhere before or after and add wherever -> LAX. Good Example would be LAX - xxx - SIN - xxx - LAX (stop "stay at home") -> HNL. Then buy your ticket from HNL back home.

    I don't know about DL/US/etc

    Wanted to note that this isnt carrier specific per se, its FF program specific. I'm doing LAX - SFO - ICN - TPE (Stop 3 days) - BKK; KBV - BKK - NRT - LAX in a few weeks. This is on UA/TG/NH planes
     
  5. Jenny & Curt
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    Jenny & Curt Gold Member

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    I have done (in all cases redeeming US miles)
    SBP-SFO-NYC-BRU (stop one month)-NBO (destination for 2 weeks)-ZRH-PHL-PHX-SBP (on UA,SN,LX,US)
    LAX-AKL (stop three weeks)-BKK (destination for 10 days)-LAX (on NZ & TG)
    SBP-SFO-PEK (destination for 3 weeks)-KIX (stopover for a week)-SFO-SBP

    So, you can see that the stopover can be even longer than your time at destination.
     
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  6. jetsetr
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    jetsetr Gold Member

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    Just to chime in on this part of the question, one can do quite a lot in a city even with less than 24 hours. Sure, if you're not one who likes such short trips/intermediary stops along the way, this may not be desirable. But if you have a plan of action, even if the plan is, "I'm going to find a outdoor cafe, have some wine, beer, sample the local fare, and people watch," it can be quite enjoyable. And then of course, some of us like collecting passport stamps and setting foot in as many countries as possible ;)

    Sorry we didn't get a chance to meet in LA. Maybe next April in Virginia. Or maybe on a MegaDo :)
     
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  7. Roaddoggin

    Roaddoggin Silver Member

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    I'm one of them, but i've been to most of the world's hub cities' nations already (excepting some in Asia). ;)

    Sounds like a plan. FTU in LA was my first event with other frequent travelers outside of my immediate professional and friend/family circles. I could see myself doing more, and getting more out of these programs. In 4 years, I've gotten a total of 6 credit card signup bonuses, and maintained DL and HHonors diamond status, but I'm learning I can do so much more.

    Thanks again!
     
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  8. servo

    servo Silver Member

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    I realize the name kinda implies that they're mostly for frequent travelers, but for people like me who fly 5-6 times a year, and stays maybe 20-30 nights at hotels (for road trips plus flights), but is travel-minded, and interested in ways to maximize credit cards/alternative methods for points/miles acquisition, is there a benefit of attending FTU? As a fan of the aviation industry, I can see how a MegaDO would draw my interest, but I wonder if an FTU would be worth my time, as I wouldn't likely be using points/miles to attend.
     
  9. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    Depending on the airline there is no rule that the stop has to be in a major city.

    In January 2012 I did ARN-TXL, TXL-MUC-LJU, LJU-SKP, SKP-IST. I spent 20-23 hours in each of the 3 "stops" along the way and had an incredible time.
     
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  10. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    This is basically the entire premise of the events.

    Well, that and drinking.
     
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  11. servo

    servo Silver Member

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    And you learn methods not shared on FT or the blogs? If so, I can see that being worthwhile. Otherwise, it just sounds like a social hour - which would be cool if I was still single, but not so much as a newlywed.
     
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  12. edekba

    edekba Gold Member

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    Yes. What you take away from it is entirely up to you. I will say that some of the things discussed at FTU have already been written about either on blogs/forums, but when you have the author or ... people with more exp actually talk about it and then answer questions it is sorta like someone putting a spotlight on it rather than a flashlight, if that makes any sense.

    You have to temper your expectations and go with an open mind. I know some people I met that felt like the secret session was a let down and there was nothing earth shattering. While I can see how some people would think that, if they were going in thinking that these people were going share something like the next 4mile HKG trip that they can book with regularity. Of course that's not going to happen and I knew that. I walked away with more information that I went in and that was perfectly worth the $ i spent to get there. (Gas + $99 since I was local)

    Also being single/married/etc doesnt seem to play a role. I don't think anyone went to hook up, but just to be around like minded individuals to discuss a hobby that they enjoy doing.
     
  13. Jenny & Curt
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    Jenny & Curt Gold Member

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    I thought the OP was just referring to the time away from the new spouse, and the trade-off attending the FTU would represent.
     
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  14. edekba

    edekba Gold Member

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    oh ... in that case ... MY BAD :p bring her? She can goto a session while you attend the otherone and then share =)

    ---
    can you tell i'm not married?
     
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  15. Roaddoggin

    Roaddoggin Silver Member

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    The event was definitely more informative than just reading blogs. That said, I often don't have time to read all of the travel blogs in my feed list and this provided an opportunity to get more in depth on some topics.

    As I suppose is true of any topic, you're going to hear some things direct from the proverbial horse's mouth that would never see print.

    I was able to make FTU a stop along my way to work in Cupertino this week. I don't know that I would have gone if I wasn't already headed to California or at least the west coast.

    The social element was the least important to me, at least this year. I've largely been a blog reader and forum lurker for a while. I may recognize a few names, but I don't know anyone yet.
     
  16. servo

    servo Silver Member

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    LOL - I wasn't thinking of it from that perspective, it was more that it's tough to get away from the spouse for a weekend for a social event, especially since I got married in April, and my social calendar is quite busier than it was when I was single.

    I might look at the next Chicago one then, and could bring the wife into town since we have mutual friends, and both love it there. I'm not looking for mileage/mattress run type stuff, but if there were trick it type things to get cheap flights or hotels, or other goodies, as well as chit chat with like minded people, I'd be down.
     
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  17. edekba

    edekba Gold Member

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    If I had to catogrize the sessions...
    MR - 2
    CHEAP - 9
    AWARD - 5
    ETC - 7
    CC - 5
     
  18. servo

    servo Silver Member

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    That's helpful. MR as in Mattress/Mileage run, or Membership Rewards?
     
  19. edekba

    edekba Gold Member

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    Bed/Mile Run
     
  20. rodeojones

    rodeojones Silver Member

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    I've always thought it would be cool to have a thread for people to post their successful stopover/open jaw routes and the airline they did it on.

    For someone who is still trying to grasp the whole concept and what routes work, I think it would be very beneficial.
     
  21. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    EWR-FRA-KBP (Destination)
    KBP-VIE (20 hour connection)
    VIE-FRA-MCO (stopover/open jaw)
    JAX-EWR

    Booked with UA miles, flown on UA, LH & OS.

    At one point it was booked as:
    EWR-FRA-LWO (Destination/Open Jaw)
    KBP-MUC-LIS (12 hour connection)
    LIS-MIA (stopover/open jaw)
    JAX-EWR
     
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  22. servo

    servo Silver Member

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    How much does something like this cost out-of-pocket? You know, taxes, fees, rental cars, hotels, etc? Because it looks like you had to get from MCO-JAX to get back to EWR, so there was likely some fee in there to get 2.5 hrs (drive time) north.

    Milevalue does a pretty good job of explaining at least the AA routes, but it does seem like this is going to be a challenge for people who don't fly internationally on a regular basis (including me!). That's why those award booking services exist. I really want to understand how it works for a scenario I'm looking at, because I can't grasp it as easily when I don't really know the in-between plans of the examples they write about.

    I've got 120k AA miles that I want to use to visit Europe in 2014, saving my *A miles for the first/business class jaunt that we want to take in 2015 to Asia. For the Europe trip, I'm imagining the arrival being MCO-ORD-FCO, visiting Rome, Florence, Venice, (Zurich and Paris if we have time), and Barcelona and Madrid with a return on IB from MAD-MIA-MCO. I know I wouldn't qualify for stopovers unless it was at ORD or MIA (gateway city) on the way out on AA miles, and that really isn't appealing, so I'd either have to use RyanAir or the Eurorail to get between cities inexpensively, right? Recommendations?

    One of the bloggers told me to save up the AA miles for the business/first trip to Asia and maybe use HNL as the gateway city (which might be appealing), but then I'd need to figure out how to use *A miles (65k is my balance with US, and I should have 55k UA at the end of this month, as well as 55k UR points) for Europe (Economy is fine for me on an 8 hr flight (esp if seats are in a 2-(4 or 5) 2 configuration and it's just my wife and I in our row)), and they didn't really give any advice for that.
     
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  23. edekba

    edekba Gold Member

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    Servo ... you should look into OW Explorer awards...

    using wikipedia ...

    MCO - MIA - FCO; VCE - TXL - ORY - TXL - ZRH - MAD - MIA - MCO = ~12,800 miles so only about 115k AA miles in Business Class
     
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  24. servo

    servo Silver Member

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    Each? I need 2 tix.
     
  25. edekba

    edekba Gold Member

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    .... 90k for Y or get more AA miles ;)
     
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