Ideas for award ticket to Italy in May / June

Discussion in 'General Discussion | Miles/Points' started by LarryInNYC, Jan 10, 2012.  |  Print Topic

  1. LarryInNYC

    LarryInNYC Gold Member

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    I'll have an approximately two week leisure trip to Italy departing from the NYC area the last week of May. The best airports for me are PSA or GOA but Milan is also okay.

    I have almost no experience with award tickets. Does anyone have any suggestions for an interesting award option preferably taking in another city (or two) elsewhere in Europe. I would be interested in traveling business or better at least on the outbound leg, and probably in overshooting Italy outbound for a stopover somewhere else.

    I'm currently sitting on 100,500 Skymiles points and 258,000 AAdvantage miles (although I would probably prefer to keep the AA miles for a family trip later in the summer). I have the Sapphire card on the way and expect to complete the minimum spend fairly quickly.

    Any suggestions for interesting awards, or other hints on booking, are welcome.

    Thanks in advance.
     
  2. RestlessLocationSyndrome
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    RestlessLocationSyndrome Silver Member

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    Are you planning on getting just one ticket or two? If one, the Skymiles is a pretty decent option in utilizing Air France & KLM.

    I'm thinking you can do the following to maximize your booking:
    1. Book a reward for AF from NYC to GOA or PSA with a stopover in CDG or KL from NYC to GOA or PSA with a stopover at AMS (make this business class outbound)
    2. Book a paid ticket from GOA or PSA to AMS or CDG (depending on which city you didn't visit on the way out
    3. Finish your reward with an open jaw from AMS or CDG to NYC.
    This should allow you to visit Genoa / Pisa as well as Paris and Amsterdam by utilizing SkyTeam hubs for Air France and KLM with only a one way ticket purchase from GOA or PSA to AMS or CDG. There is also flexibility in allowing you to find the award space you need as well as playing with the cheaper paid option as you need it.

    I'm also interested to hear what other ideas the creative people here at MP have.
     
  3. LarryInNYC

    LarryInNYC Gold Member

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    Only me this trip.

    Just the stopover would be great, I don't need to hit three cities.
     
  4. RestlessLocationSyndrome
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    RestlessLocationSyndrome Silver Member

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    If you want to do an all Italy trip and only want 2 cities, you can always check to see if you can get Alitalia via FCO and just do a stopover in Rome as well.... although reward tickets on Alitalia were pretty hard to get find from LAX.... maybe different from JFK.
     
  5. MSPeconomist
    Original Member

    MSPeconomist Gold Member

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    For smaller airports in Italy, you must connect through Rome or Milan using AZ, which has coach only domestic flights. If you do not want to pay for the one way ticket as suggested above, you can stay for up to 24 hours, possibly a bit more for the first connecting flight, in either AMS or CDG and do a proper longer stopover in the other city. Personally, I think trying to do Paris, Amsterdam, and Italy all in two weeks is too much. Do one stopover along the way and a number of places in Italy. For Italy, it can be wise to allow some leeway in the schedule in case of strikes.

    AF award seats can be easier to find from IAD, on the A380, so you might want to look for that TATL routing can consider either taking the train or even purchasing cheap connecting flights if the connections drive up the price in miles beyond low at 00,000 for business class using DL miles.
     
  6. LarryInNYC

    LarryInNYC Gold Member

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    I agree (although the visit to Italy is to someplace I visit regularly, and I lived as a child in Paris and so am somewhat familiar with it).

    What I'd really like to do is overshoot Italy on a non-stop outbound flight to have the longest possible opportunity to sleep (assuming I can book business, otherwise I want the shortest possible flight). Istanbul? Somewhere else?
     
  7. MSPeconomist
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    MSPeconomist Gold Member

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    Consider SVO, WAW, PRG, ATH, IST, VIE, MUC, BUD for nonstop overshooting on DL. Connecting at AMS, easy, or CGD, ick, would give you more exotic options. However, before booking, consider how you would get back to Italy and any visa requirements.

    I think IST is great, although not in the middle of summer. Also, since it became very fashionable among Europeans, it is expensive.
     
  8. MDDCFlyer

    MDDCFlyer Silver Member

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    If you'll get enough point on your Sapphire card (60K for X, 100K for I), you can get to IST on TK, and go back through Italy (as a stop over) on a CO award. If there is availability it could be done online with no booking fees.
     

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