Honeymoon Help -- Zurich and the Seychelles

Discussion in 'General Discussion | Miles/Points' started by jtk5d, Oct 14, 2012.  |  Print Topic

  1. jtk5d

    jtk5d Active Member

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    I am working on honeymoon planning for September 2013 and need help from the experts. It is almost within the window where I can book at the possible options and combos are mind boggling to me. I have 225k+ miles with AA and United along with 200k UR points, 115k US Air, 110k Delta, 90k BA, 100k MR etc so believe I have enough miles to make various options work. I want to travel in business or first class and will be going IAD - ZRH (stop for 3 days) / ZRH - SEZ (stop for ~10 days) / SEZ - IAD (or JFK). Is this even a legal routing? I was focused on United because all the segments are available, but can't seem to get the full itinerary to price out together. If I wanted to add another stop in Africa (JNB?), should I look into 2 one-way awards instead? Any help is appreciated. Thank you!
     
  2. edekba

    edekba Gold Member

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    Using united doing IAD - ZRH; ZRH - SEZ & SEZ back should be a legal routing. You have one stopover which is allowed. Adding another stopover wouldnt work ... nor would using AA allow the stopover in ZRH.
     
  3. desamo

    desamo Gold Member

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    There are no nonstops from ZRH to SEZ as the only star alliance carrier to fly to the Seychelles is Ethiopian via ADD.

    Some of us booked SEZ trips on QR before that relationship ended last month.
     
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  4. edekba

    edekba Gold Member

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    Doh i should've checked wiki.

    Cant OP connect @ FRA on DE? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Condor_Flugdienst
     
  5. desamo

    desamo Gold Member

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    Why not fly Ethiopian? DIG/R_1K has flown them fairly recently, though he was going to ZNZ.

    ETA: may be possible to book revenue via points through QR, EK, or Etihad, too, so long as one doesn't mind a change of planes in Qatar, Dubai, or Abu Dhabi. Swiss flies to Dubai at least. Flown that route.
     
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  6. edekba

    edekba Gold Member

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    because
    IAD - ZRH - FRA/IST - ADD - SEZ
    instead of
    IAD - ZRH - FRA - SEZ
     
  7. desamo

    desamo Gold Member

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    Edited above post to add some more thoughts....

    Another edit: Swiss only flies to Dubai, not Doha or Abu Dhabi.
     
  8. jtk5d

    jtk5d Active Member

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    Thanks for the help so far. Zrh - sez does connect thru add, assume that still makes it a legal routing on united?

    I'm also debating doing jnb or somewhere else in Africa and then buying a r/t to sez for part of the time and maybe doing a safari part of the time. So iad - zrh / zrh - jnb (or somewhere else) / jnb - NYC. Any thought on still using united miles versus oneworld?

    I could fly out of FRA instead of ZRH no problem, but I thought I couldn't use united miles to book a condor flight? Thanks again!
     
  9. desamo

    desamo Gold Member

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    So long as it's under 24 hours, it's not a stopover. Swiss and Ethiopian also connect in Dubai, Dar es Salaam, and Nairobi if those connections work out better for you. They will add an extra connection on Ethiopian, though.

    You can use both, you know, if it makes sense for you. Earlier this year, I did SFO-HKG-DXB-JFK-SFO. First two segments were on Cathay Pacific, which is OneWorld. (In my case, I didn't have enough miles to do it only in one program.)

    That said, JNB is a SAA city, which is Star Alliance.

    The continent where the three alliances differ the most is Africa. Most everything of interest in Africa will probably connect (with large fuel surcharges and poor availabillity) through London on OneWorld. I don't know as much about SkyTeam and haven't found a good map for them, but I'm betting a lot of their African routes go through Paris or Amsterdam.

    But you don't just have United miles -- you have gobs in several programs as well as some unaffiliated miles.

    Assuming you have MR full-use points and not the almost-useful Express points:

    Your MR points can be transferred to ANA, Air Canada, and Singapore, and you can book Star Alliance flights through those carriers (different rules, though, so be careful). They can also be used to transfer to Delta and several other SkyTeam carriers, and British Airways on OneWorld, which can be really useful.

    You can also just buy a flight with membership rewards, but probably it won't pay for the full fare for two in premium classes.
     
  10. jtk5d

    jtk5d Active Member

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    Thank you. I thought I couldn't book use any Star Alliance miles (ANA, Air Canada, Singapore etc) to book Condor flights. The direct flight from FRA-SEZ clearly would be my best option, but may not be feasible. Getting to DXB is a good option, but Emirates direct flights to SEZ seem expensive ($1,000 each) even in coach. United miles with Ethiopian Air seem to be the best bet, but if I decide to go to Africa as well that would seem to complicate everything.

    Should a 1 way to SEZ on United with a 3 day stop in Zurich (IAD - ZRH / ZRH - SEZ with a relatively short layover in ADD) price out as a one way to Africa (ie 60K in business)? I can't seem to get it to price out correctly online, and want to be educated before I call in. Thanks!
     
  11. Flyer1976
    Original Member

    Flyer1976 Gold Member

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    My thoughts are to transfer the Chase URs into the United Account for the Rewards. As you will need 120,000 Miles per person for a Business Class reward from North America to Seychelles and you are permitted a free stopover.

    So the following is a legal routing.
    IAD-ZRH
    ZRH-DAR-ADD-SEZ
    SEZ-ADD-FRA-IAD

    However if you want to go to JNB too here's what I would do... Book it as this.

    Reward 1 - 120,000 Miles
    IAD ZRH
    ZRH DAR ADD SEZ
    JNB IAD
    (Either on SAA, LX via ZRH, LH via FRA)

    Reward 2 - 25,000 Miles
    SEZ ADD JNB on ET in C

    Posted via Smoke Signals.
     
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  12. desamo

    desamo Gold Member

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    With United, you can't do a stopover on a one-way, unfortunately, which is why my RTW earlier this year was four separate tickets.

    You can, however, nest tickets. NYC-ZRH and back on one ticket and ZRH-SEZ-ZRH on a separate ticket. Or, do what DIG/R_1K posted above as I was typing. :)

    Since I recently booked an SEZ trip, of a sort, I've currently got three tickets booked and will have one more ticket, which I'll probably buy now that I have the price down to something tolerable. This is just to give you an idea of something you can do (except for the Qatar part as they are no longer a United partner):

    LGW-TUN was 6k miles + $42.50 in coach (business wasn't available on the right dates) with British Airways Avios
    TUN-IST-DOH-SEZ was 35k miles + $23.70 in business with United miles
    SEZ-DOH-VIE-BUD was 45k miles + $55.50 in business with United miles

    [​IMG]
     
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  13. desamo

    desamo Gold Member

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    Correct, but: you have non-Star Alliance program points that aren't affiliated with any specific program (MR, for example). I wouldn't do the Condor thing as you can get there on *A.
     
  14. jtk5d

    jtk5d Active Member

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    Thank you to you both. This has given me some good ideas, and United miles seem to be the way to go. Lastly, any recommendations for booking this as soon as availability opens up for each leg? Ie can I book IAD-ZRH, and then 3 days later have them add ZRH - DAR - ADD - SEZ to the itinerary and re-price it? And then do the same thing when the final leg availability opens up?
     
  15. desamo

    desamo Gold Member

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    You can, but they can (and likely will) charge you a phone fee for changing the ticket. Still better than the alternative (losing the seats), though.
     
  16. desamo

    desamo Gold Member

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  17. stevenshev

    stevenshev Silver Member

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    Can't see why the nesting ideas are necessary unless OP is planning to turn JNB into a stopover.

    IAD-UA-ZRH-ET-ADDx-SEZ-SA-JNBx-JFKx-UA-IAD should work just dandily on one UA award. And that would be my recommendation based on both cost and comfort.
     
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  18. nime01
    Original Member

    nime01 Gold Member

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    Where are you planning to stay in the Seychelles?
     
  19. jtk5d

    jtk5d Active Member

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    Hilton Seychelles Northolme Resort & Spa using Hilton points was the plan. Thinking about then paying for an upgrade but the suites don't look all that much better. Thoughts? Also thinking about staying for about a week and then doing a 4 day safari in Africa before flying home JNB - JFK.
     

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