Booking UA Saver Award Travel - CMH --> Europe

Discussion in 'United Airlines | MileagePlus' started by IPG, Jul 4, 2013.  |  Print Topic

  1. IPG

    IPG Active Member

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    I am booking a Saver level award on UA from CMH to Europe. I want to visit Venice, Athens, London, and Paris. My proposed itinerary is as follows (dates flexible):

    Sept. 28: CMH --> VCE
    Oct. 6: ATH --> LHR
    Oct. 13: LHR --> CMH

    I was using an open jaw between VCE and ATH (purchasing a separate one way ticket).
    Using an stopover in LHR. During that week was going to take the chunnel to Paris for a few days, return to LHR to head home.

    I was able to get ua.com to price this out at 60,000 miles + tax. Now, after adjusting dates around, I can't replicate this. I receive an error referring me to award routing rules.

    Is the above an allowable routing?
    Any suggestions on better ways to visit these cities? (I'm actually open to just about any place in Italy other than Rome.)
    Am I taking full advantage of UA award routing rules?

    I'm also open to completely blowing this up and starting over!

    Look forward to hearing any comments or suggestions!
     
  2. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    Yes, the above is permissible. The website isn't great with multi-city and will often blow up for no reason. If you can find the seats searching segment-by-segment it should be possible to book it over the phone.

    I would change your routing in at least one, if not two ways.
    1) I would fly home from Paris, not London, if you can find the award seats. You'll save a decent amount of $$ in the form of lower taxes.
    2) Technically you are permitted two open jaws and you only have one. That means you could change the third flight to be CDG-LHR and only have to pay for the train one way (assuming you can find award space). The catch with that change is that the system will almost certainly not price it properly so you'll need a very cooperative agent to help you book it. I've found that it is often easier to book the single open jaw and then change the reservation to a double open jaw versus booking the double to start. But I also don't pay change fees due to status so that value is a little easier to derive.
     
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  3. IPG

    IPG Active Member

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    1.) I was purposely going to try to not fly out of LHR for that reason and then completely forgot about that. Thanks for reminding me!

    2.) I'm not Silver so not change fee free. However I could book then call back to change within 24 hours to avoid a fee? Assuming of course all flights are available.
     
  4. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    In theory the answer to #2 is yes. In practice, well, that's the theory. :p
     
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  5. desamo

    desamo Gold Member

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    Amsterdam (AMS) taxes are even lower, fwiw. If you have Avios, you can even book a LON-AMS flight (BA flies to AMS from three London airports) for 9,000 Avios and $27.50 in C. Or: train.
     
  6. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    Right, but the OP wants to visit Paris. Avios should be the same cost to get there, too.

    And I'd save the points and fly in Y on that flight unless there was only C space available.
     
  7. desamo

    desamo Gold Member

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    Good points. I just quoted C because I'd recently booked C (when Y wasn't available).
     
  8. IPG

    IPG Active Member

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    Thanks for all the great info! We are slowly getting the details finalized. Will definitely share what we end up with. My SO mocks me and says he thinks I get more excited about the prep work than the actual trip!
     
  9. IPG

    IPG Active Member

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    So it's been a lot of haggling with schedules, award availability, and with the SO haha! Here is what we ended up with. It's amazing what a month or so does:

    Sept 21 CMH --> IST
    Sept 25 IST --> FLR (Florence & the Cinque Terre)
    Oct 6 LHR --> CMH

    I could really only find availability out of LHR on Oct 6 so have to pony up the taxes. We are buying a separate flight from Italy to MAD and working our way via train to London. Any suggestions on how to further maximize this schedule? I can still make changes for free for 24 hours.

    I had an itinerary previously planned but was shot down by UA because its either two open jaws OR one stopover. Not both. Or so I was told? Should I call back?
     
  10. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    That is incorrect. You are allowed both.
     
  11. brodyf

    brodyf Gold Member

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    If you still want to visit Paris, it is really cheap and easy to fly Ryan Air from Pisa to Orly. My family of four flew one way PSA-ORY for less than $200 including bag fees (but not including the 4 euro coffee).
     

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