Help with AA award booking

Discussion in 'American Airlines | AAdvantage' started by rharrigill, Jul 25, 2011.  |  Print Topic

  1. rharrigill
    Original Member

    rharrigill Silver Member

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    I'm 3,100 miles short of what I need for our trip to Europe next year. Looking at the milesaaver availability on the AA website, it looks like seat availability is becoming limited. I'll have the 3100 miles at the end of this billing cycle on my AA Visa, but that's still 20 days away.

    What are the rules regarding "holding" your reservation/itinerary? Can you hold for 5 days, release, rehold, etc?

    Anyone have any advice for me? This is my first award booking.

    Traveling mid-May, hoping to get two 20k milesaavers to LHR, then two 30k milesaavers from CDG on the way back.

    If I need to, I will buy 4k miles from AA for $110, but I'd rather find a way around this.

    Thanks in advance!
     
  2. DestinationDavid
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    DestinationDavid Milepoint Guide

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    The tricks of searching for awards isn't my forte, but the things that popped into my mind when I read this were:

    1. You're only looking at AA's award space into LHR and out of CDG. Keep in mind that you can also look at Iberia, Finnair, and Malev's availability by calling AA. British Airways is an option as well, but booking with them will incur some sizable YQ charges that you might want to avoid. Award space might look like it's going but you're only looking at part of the picture to begin with.

    2. If you hold an award and the hold expires, the award space does not automatically go back to being available. So your idea of holding/expiring/renewing will not actually guarantee you space. It might just disappear into the AA.com shadows.

    3. Train service in Europe is pretty efficient, painless, and relatively fast. Have you considered BRU as a substitute option for either LHR or CDG and buying inexpensive onward train tickets?

    Others are much better at the other logistics you're seeking. If you are looking for some fast/cheap miles, there is a thread somewhere here in the forum that has a list of some methods to get them, though I don't think you'll get the amount you need through those methods. I can't find the link, and sadly I'm out the door to get a new leash for my dog since his broke on our walk and I just ran about a mile tracking him through Chicago's lakeshore. :eek:

    Good luck!
     
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  3. JohnDeere19
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    JohnDeere19 Gold Member

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    Where are you flying from?
     
  4. rharrigill
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    rharrigill Silver Member

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    Thanks for the info, David.

    We're flying from LIT, but MEM is close so if we had to we could fly from there, but we'd rather not.
     
  5. swag
    Original Member

    swag Silver Member

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    Go ahead and put it on hold. The day before the hold expires, start a new booking, and see if the seats are still available. If they are, cancel yours and immediately rebook and re-hold. If the seats aren't available, don't cancel, since as noted, they may not be returned into award inventory. Instead, call up AAdvantage and ask if they can extend your hold for you. Explain that the miles you need to get the ticket should post in x days. There's a good chance that they will extend your hold as a courtesy.
     

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