Having a hard time figuring out award travel

Discussion in 'Newbies' started by chesky, Apr 4, 2013.  |  Print Topic

  1. chesky

    chesky New Member

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    I have a few hundred thousand MR points and I plan to fly to London from NYC in June with a stopover for a couple of days in Switzerland. Can anyone advise me how to find the right deal for business/first class tickets?

    Thanks
     
  2. TravelBear

    TravelBear Gold Member

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    I don't know a thing about MR points but check out this post by Million Mile Secrets. In it he talks about how to transfer points to airlines. Hope this helps.
     
  3. viguera
    Original Member

    viguera Gold Member

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    June as in THIS June coming up? That's cutting it close, but I'd imagine there's still award inventory somewhere.

    I'd imagine the best approach is figuring out which airline / alliance is going to take you were you want, exploring some of the tools out there to find availability (wandr.me or reading up the threads on using the ANA tool, etc), etc.

    There are a lot of questions too... are your dates flexible at all, do you intend to use the points for hotel stays as well, etc.

    And if you're completely clueless -- or lazy -- I wouldn't pass up on one of the award booking services available. They're not expensive, run by members of the community and generally very effective in getting the job done.
     
  4. Wandering Aramean
    Original Member

    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    If just a one-way ticket then getting the stopover will be a challenge without paying extra points. Even with a return ticket there will be challenges as you're late in the booking timeline for travel in ~8 weeks. Also consider that departing London in a premium cabin will cost you a lot of cash due to the APD fee. That departure tax alone can be around $200 on top of the points and the other taxes. Going to London first and then adding the stopover in Switzerland after that rather than before can save you a decent chunk of cash.
     
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  5. deant
    Original Member

    deant Milepoint Guide

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    Since you are new to finding award tickets, I suggest that you look toward one of the award booking services. You have a couple of issues that need to be overcome. First, wanting first or business seats limits your availability significantly. Second, booking only 2 months in advance is another real limiting factor (most of us book 11 months in advance). Third, having a "few hundred thousand" MR points may not really be helpful because of the limited transferability of the points.

    Because of all the constraints and your newness to booking award flights, I strongly recommend that you use one of the award booking services. Yes it will cost you a little but it will improve your chances significantly.
     
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  6. MSPeconomist
    Original Member

    MSPeconomist Gold Member

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    I would disagree about the advice to use a paid booking service. For one ticket NYC-London-Switzerland-NYC anytime in June in business or first class, it should not be so complicted. Many carriers fly NYC-LON, although LX/LH probably has the most options for Switzerland, with BA second from LHR. On SkyTeam, you would have to connect through CDG, AMS, or FCO, maybe MXP, using AF, KLM, or AZ. I would start by checking the airlines into which MP transfers.
     
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