Honeymoon to Ireland - booking questions

Discussion in 'General Discussion | Miles/Points' started by Mikus33, Jan 25, 2012.  |  Print Topic

  1. Mikus33

    Mikus33 Silver Member

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    I'm pretty new to the miles game and I'm working on booking my honeymoon to Ireland. My base airport is MCI, but finding availability out of MCI in first/business is quite difficult. I found availability from CLT to DUB in business on the way out for 50,000 points/ticket on US Airways (booked through CO), and first from DUB-FRA-ORD for 67,500/ticket on the way back. I called to have the flights reserved for 3 days, and I have a few questions:

    1. In order to book the whole trip (235,000 points) I need my fiancée's 50k credit card bonus to come through, which won't happen until Feb 6. My reservations are only good until midnight on Jan 27. Is there a way to transfer my reservation to her account to get more reservation days (even though another 3 days won't be enough)? Any chance I could pass the reservation back and forth between us or to another CO account to make it until the Feb 6 points hit? (It's been very hit and miss finding first/business availability out of any hubs, so I hate having to give up either of the reservations)

    2. Do the Chase Ultimate rewards post immediately in my CO account as soon as I transfer them or do I need to start the transfer now or tomorrow?

    3. Is there anyway to get out of paying the $50 call center fees when I book?

    Any other advice for a newbie?
     
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  2. deant
    Original Member

    deant Milepoint Guide

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    To answer your questions in revers order.
    3. No easy way to get out of paying the call center fee.
    2. The Chase UR should post immediately when you do the transfer.
    1. In the past, some people have had luck in calling every 3 days to get a hold extended however I have not heard of that lately. Trying to "pass" the award back and forth will not work because you will need to cancel the reservation and then make a new reservation and there is no guarantee that the seats will go directly back into inventory.

    Hope this helps.
     
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  3. MDDCFlyer

    MDDCFlyer Silver Member

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    I don't think you can pass the reservation - in essence that would mean letting it go, and grabbing it again under the other account - assuming that the availability will still be there.

    Chase points are posted immediately. I suggest you would contact Chase and ask them to post the points early - they are usually very responsive (less than 12 hours usually), and although I never asked for something like this before - the worst they would say no and you are no worse than you started with.

    I assume you used the call center instead of booking online is to get the hold - however, if you don't have enough points on CO account to complete the booking it can be placed on hold on-line as well. Those partners (US and LH or UA) are readily available on-line and there is really no need to call to book them. When you book online there is no phone reservation fees. The itineraries are also very simple and could be found online without a problem. However, now, to get them back online you'll have to let them expire (or off hold) and grab them back again if and when they will be released - probably not a wise choice.
     
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  4. Mikus33

    Mikus33 Silver Member

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    Thanks for all of the help. I now see that my CLT-DUB flight still has availability. I realize I need to reserve it again under my Fiancee's account because the CO bonus miles will post to her account (since they're not the transferrable Sapphire points) and thats where I'll need to make the booking. Any issues with having two reservations with the same names on the same flight until I'm able to confirm that I have the new reservation and confirm my old reservation?

    I'll do this online this time to avoid the fees. Thanks for the heads up on that. I didn't realize I could reserve without the points in the account (I don't know why I didn't just try this).

    Worst case scenario, I'll at least be able to book the return tickets in 1st by tomorrow, and keep looking for availability on the way out until those bonus points post.
     
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  5. MDDCFlyer

    MDDCFlyer Silver Member

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    Be aware that you can hold a reservation on CO only if you do not have enough points in the accounts - otherwise it will go to ticketing. The usual trick (at least for the next month or so) is to link it to a UA account, move the miles to UA, hold the reservation, and move the points back to CO when you are ready to ticket.
     
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  6. harvson3

    harvson3 Silver Member

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    Just to add/remind: you can add a stopover for a few days anywhere else in Europe (CDG, LHR, even IST) for nothing extra.

    EDIT: Well, not nothing. There might be a few more dollars in airport taxes/fees.
     
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  7. MDDCFlyer

    MDDCFlyer Silver Member

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    That is true only if you book it as a round trip. If booked as two one-ways there are no stop-overs allowed.
     
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  8. Mikus33

    Mikus33 Silver Member

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    When the points post I'll have to confirm the booking, correct? (It won't automatically book the reservation once the points post, will it?)

    The stopover sounds like a good option, especially if it opens up availability. How do I know what cities are allowed on stopovers to see what my options are when flying out of DUB on my way back or out of ORD, CLT, etc. on my way out? I'm trying to figure out how creative I can get.
     
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  9. harvson3

    harvson3 Silver Member

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    Correct.

    Anywhere in Europe served by Star Alliance airlines, if routed through Europe (e.g., BRU, FRA, MUC, IST). For example, United goes to Belfast, to get there from DUB, you'd have to fly back to Newark.

    For example:

    Detalhes do voo

    Tue., Nov. 20, 2012 | Kansas City, MO (MCI) to Dublin, Ireland (DUB)

    Partida:
    4:15 p.m.
    Tue., Nov. 20, 2012
    Kansas City, MO (MCI)
    Chegada:
    7:54 p.m.
    Tue., Nov. 20, 2012
    Philadelphia, PA (PHL)
    Flight Time:
    2 hr 39 mn
    Número do voo: US3116
    Operated by US AIRWAYS EXPRESS-REPUBLIC AIRLINES.
    Aeronave: Embraer ERJ-175
    Classe de tarifa: First (O)
    Refeição: Nenhum

    Mudança de aeronaves. Tempo de conexão em Philadelphia, PA (PHL) é 1 hour 6 minutes.

    Partida:
    9:00 p.m.
    Tue., Nov. 20, 2012
    Philadelphia, PA (PHL)

    Chegada:
    8:50 a.m. +1 Dia
    Wed., Nov. 21, 2012
    Dublin, Ireland (DUB)
    Flight Time:
    6 hr 50 mn

    Horário da viagem:
    10 hr 35 mn
    Número do voo: US722
    Operated by US Airways.
    Aeronave: Boeing 757-200
    Classe de tarifa: Business (I)
    Refeição: Dinner
    Nenhuma refeição especial oferecida.

    Tue., Nov. 27, 2012 | Dublin, Ireland (DUB) to Istanbul, Turkey (IST)

    Partida:
    2:25 p.m.
    Tue., Nov. 27, 2012
    Dublin, Ireland (DUB)
    Chegada:
    8:40 p.m.
    Tue., Nov. 27, 2012
    Istanbul, Turkey (IST)
    Horário da viagem:
    4 hr 15 mn
    Número do voo: TK1978
    Operated by Turkish Airlines.
    Aeronave: Airbus A320
    Classe de tarifa: Business (I)
    Refeição: Meal
    Nenhuma refeição especial oferecida.

    Tue., Dec. 4, 2012 | Istanbul, Turkey (IST) to Kansas City, MO (MCI)

    Partida:
    8:10 a.m.
    Tue., Dec. 4, 2012
    Istanbul, Turkey (IST)
    Chegada:
    10:25 a.m.
    Tue., Dec. 4, 2012
    London, England (LHR - Heathrow)
    Flight Time:
    4 hr 15 mn
    Número do voo: TK1979
    Operated by Turkish Airlines.
    Aeronave: Airbus A330
    Classe de tarifa: Business (I)
    Refeição: Meal
    Nenhuma refeição especial oferecida.

    Mudança de aeronaves. Tempo de conexão em London, England (LHR - Heathrow) é 1 hour 40 minutes.

    Partida:
    12:05 p.m.
    Tue., Dec. 4, 2012
    London, England (LHR - Heathrow)

    Chegada:
    3:18 p.m.
    Tue., Dec. 4, 2012
    Chicago, IL (ORD - O'Hare)
    Flight Time:
    9 hr 13 mn
    Número do voo: UA949
    Operated by United Airlines.
    Aeronave: Boeing 767-300
    Classe de tarifa: First (O)
    Refeição: Lunch
    Nenhuma refeição especial oferecida.

    Mudança de aeronaves. Tempo de conexão em Chicago, IL (ORD - O'Hare) é 5 hours 42 minutes.

    Partida:
    9:00 p.m.
    Tue., Dec. 4, 2012
    Chicago, IL (ORD - O'Hare)

    Chegada:
    10:27 p.m.
    Tue., Dec. 4, 2012
    Kansas City, MO (MCI)
    Flight Time:
    1 hr 27 mn

    Horário da viagem:
    22 hr 17 mn
    Número do voo: UA6159
    Operated by UNITED EXPRESS/EXPRESSJET AIRLINES.
    Aeronave: Embraer RJ145
    Classe de tarifa: Economy (X)
    Refeição: Nenhum

    Comes to 235,000 miles for 2 people. (Of course, it doesn't get you the FCT at FRA, which may have been part of your plan.)
     
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  10. Mikus33

    Mikus33 Silver Member

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    Thanks so much for all of the help. I'm trying to figure out the best way to search. Does that mean that as long as I can find SaverPass availability I can use that as one of my legs (to or from the States) no matter where it starts/ends?

    For example, I have have CLT-DUB in business on 5/28 reserved, and I found availbility with the saver business/first class from CDG-BRU-ORD on 6/9. Now I just need to pick a flight from DUB-CDG a few days before for my few day stopover in Paris (plenty of availability in the saver class), and then book all that at once (assuming that I get all the points in time).

    To make this stopover happen I may have to give up first/business on one end of the trip so that I can book it all at one time, but it might be worth it to have the stopover.

    Giving up the FCT at FRA would kinda suck, so maybe I'll have to find a better option on the way out to DUB via a stopover CDG or elsewhere.
     
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  11. MDDCFlyer

    MDDCFlyer Silver Member

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    Continental site is really a gem when it comes to searching and constructing award on CO miles (not as comprehensive as ANA site, but much easier to use). The best thing to do is to construct the entire trip you are interested at (using the multiplicity search) and see how much the CO engine calculate the cost to be.

    It might not allow some stop-overs as they are not in a hub city or not direct routing - that would depends on the exact rules CO will employ. I don't know them very well (nor are they published in any way that would make sense I think - but I can be wrong there), so the best way is just to plug away what you want and see what comes out in the end.
     
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  12. daninstl

    daninstl Gold Member

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    I hate to say it because I'm cheap but I'm wondering if this is the best use of your miles. Aer Lingus has some really cheap flights at times from St Louis so I'm assuming MCI would be nearly the same. It might be cheaper to originate from ORD or Boston, NY, etc. and pay for the domestic flight difference. Also compare flights to Dublin or Shannon as sometimes one or the other is cheaper. The down side to paying is you'll end up in coach so if you can book business/envoy class with your miles it should be a good value.
     
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  13. Mikus33

    Mikus33 Silver Member

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    I do love using the Continental site, it's pretty incredible.

    daninstl, I think you may be right. I did a little more searching and a RT MCI-DUB flight is only $1053. And the layovers aren't too bad compared to the other more expensive options. I was hoping to fly 1st/biz on the honeymoon, but that price seems like a pretty good deal considering my points options all require me to spend at least $250 to get to the departing cities.
     
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  14. MDDCFlyer

    MDDCFlyer Silver Member

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    It is your honey moon so you'll have to make that decision - but if it was me I would still splurge. Honeymoon only happens once (if you lucky I guess), and should be a special event. It is not the weekend run to Dublin for a short vacation. But of course, it all depends on the value you are putting on the miles. Do you have another redemption in mind to use them? If it is just to sit tight in your miles account then it is a mistake in my opinion.

    Why do you have to spend money to get to the departing cities? It should be part of the same itinerary - even if it is in Y. You should be able to get it on points (even if the routing will be less then optimal).

    Sometimes it is a gamble - booking too close to the edge of the availability will mean less domestic connection available that would be open on a few days; but by that time the international sections will be gone.
    I made this mistake once and had to buy a connection ticket on Y. If I remembered I could change dates with no cost, I would have booked a flight with stop over, get the dates I want a few days later and then change the itinerary to abolish the stop over. Live and learn.
     
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  15. Mikus33

    Mikus33 Silver Member

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    I don't have another "for sure" redemption in mind, but there's a possibility of Africa in 2013.

    The SaverPass option doesn't show up when I search out of MCI (even in Y or with non-optimal routing). The only options that show up are the higher fares (147.5k one way for 1st, 125k for biz, 55k for Y). Is there a way around this?

    If I could swing my original booking (all in for 235k + fees) out of MCI by switching it to my fiancee's account (where the CO bonus will hit on Feb 6) I would do that.

    Once I have seats on those CLT-DUB and DUB-FRA-ORD in a reservation is there any chance I would be able to add in a stopover in the middle of that now that I know that's an option? I'm guessing that reservation is set in stone, but I figured I'd ask.

    And since I need that extra 50k to finalize that 235k booking the best I could do today is book 2 tickets one way and hope that the ticket is released back into award space where I can reserve it again (if they won't let me extend the reservation). This would also sacrifice the stopover option.
     
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  16. MDDCFlyer

    MDDCFlyer Silver Member

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    You are in a bind. If the reservation is not ticketed and there is space you could add the stop-over, but that is only done on a round-trip basis. If you have two one-ways on hold, my guess is that they will not be able to combine them to one reservation and would have to start from scratch - but then again, no hurt in asking it.

    What are the dates you are looking for? Maybe someone can come up with better routing.
     
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  17. Mikus33

    Mikus33 Silver Member

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    My dates are 5/28 to 6/8 or 6/9.

    The reservation is under a RT right now, but if I decide to book something tonight (if they won't let me transfer the reservation to my fiancee's account or extend the reservation), then I'm stuck with the two one-ways.

    The stopover would be a nice bonus, but its not huge in my opinion because we could easily fill 10 or 11 days exploring Ireland.

    Being able to somehow get the MCI-CLT and/or the ORD-MCI routes added on the beginning and/or end (as a SaverPass) would be really nice, but it doesn't look like that's possible.
     
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  18. MDDCFlyer

    MDDCFlyer Silver Member

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    If you re-route MCI-IAD-DUB on 5/28 there are several options that would get you to DUB in F class.
     
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  19. Mikus33

    Mikus33 Silver Member

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    When I search both MCI-DUB and IAD-DUB on 5/28, nothing in SaverPass 1st shows up. There are few options in EasyPass, but that's all I see.
     
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  20. Mikus33

    Mikus33 Silver Member

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    For 2 travelers that is. Now I see there are options for 1 traveler (showing up for IAD-DUB, not for MCI-IAD-DUB).
     
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  21. MDDCFlyer

    MDDCFlyer Silver Member

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    Yes. Sometimes you need to force the connection by using multi-city search. You should try every UA/CO hub to see if there is space.
     
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  22. kyunbit
    Original Member

    kyunbit Silver Member

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    every *A that is
     
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  23. Mikus33

    Mikus33 Silver Member

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    Yeah, I've been going crazy with searches, and options seem to be opening up now. I'm still waiting on those bonus points to post (making reservations in the meantime, hoping that they'll either let me extend them or they'll show up again after mine are cancelled so that I can rebook).

    Is 1 hour and 34 minutes enough of a layover in IAD to get through customs, etc. if both legs are on the same reservation?
     
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  24. MDDCFlyer

    MDDCFlyer Silver Member

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    Cutting it very close. But I would not worry too much about it if it is not the last flight of the day, they will just put you on the next one if it is on the same PNR.
     
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  25. Mikus33

    Mikus33 Silver Member

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    While still waiting for miles to post, I continue to search...

    On the way out the only thing I've found while searching 1st/biz the CLT-DUB on US724. Seat guru is showing 757-200 version 1, and seatexpert shows either v1 or v2. From what I can gather these are typical domestic 1st class seats. I've only flown international 1st/biz once before and it was on LAN from EZE-LIM-MIA. That was a great product. I'm trying to decide if the US Airways seat is worth the 50k miles per person.

    Has anyone had experience with that product and have any opinions?
     
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