Mileageplus / Star Alliance Award Travel guide

Discussion in 'United Airlines | MileagePlus' started by mullising, Apr 11, 2013.  |  Print Topic

  1. mullising

    mullising Active Member

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    Hi there

    I was looking for a guide to using United Mileage Plus miles. Wondering if there a comprehensive guide somewhere. I was planning on using miles for a trip from AUS/IAH - IST - DEL - AUS/IAH for December 14th to 31st for a party of four.

    I do have the ANA Tool that Seth (Wandering Aramean) has created.

    thanks

    Murali
     
  2. genemk2

    genemk2 Gold Member

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    I'm not aware of a comprehensive guide (but I also haven't looked for one), but I would start by reading up on the program on United.com and hub.united.com.

    Also, if you are trying to find specific award seats, you may want to sign up for something like Expertflyer (WA does your tool do alerts?), which will alert you when certain award tickets become available.
     
  3. edekba

    edekba Gold Member

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    Yes it does :)

    Back to the OP

    Your itinerary is pretty straightforward just finding 4 seats might be a problem on those specific dates, as I believe you can do IAH - IST - DEL - IAH but I could be mistaken.
     
  4. Wandering Aramean
    Original Member

    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    DEL-IAH will require a connection. For a single-stop option on *A the choices I can think of are PEK, IST, FRA or EWR.

    When searching for awards try breaking it up into chunks. So rather than just putting IAH-IST into the system (though if the TK inventory is there, grab it!) try IAH-FRA or IAH-LHR and then to IST and then to DEL and piece it together a little bit at a time.

    Also, what cabin are you looking to fly in? And how long do you want to spend in IST?
     
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  5. Wandering Aramean
    Original Member

    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    Using my *A award search tool (basically the same data as UA) I found a few options in Y.

    For the outbound:
    Code:
    LH 441	IAH	FRA	12/14/2013 4:50 PM	12/15/2013 9:35 AM	388			
    TK 1588	FRA	IST	12/15/2013 11:40 AM	12/15/2013 3:40 PM	330
    
    And, for the return, either of these (though the CA connection involves an airport change between JFK/LGA and that would be annoying):
    Code:
    LH 761	DEL	FRA	12/31/2013 3:05 AM	12/31/2013 7:05 AM	744			
    AC 873	FRA	YYZ	12/31/2013 10:00 AM	12/31/2013 12:25 PM	77W
    UA 4622	YYZ	IAH	12/31/2013 5:35 PM	12/31/2013 8:13 PM	ERJ
    
    CA 948	DEL	PEK	12/31/2013 3:15 AM	12/31/2013 11:45 AM	333			
    CA 981	PEK	JFK	12/31/2013 1:00 PM	12/31/2013 2:30 PM	773
    UA 1128	LGA	IAH	12/31/2013 6:30 PM	12/31/2013 9:34 PM	738
    Getting from IST-DEL is possible on several days in the middle of the trip but only in business class on the non-stop. In some cases I can see a couple seats in Y on the IST-FRA-DEL connection for same-day travel but not 4 on any day. I do see 4 on more days with an overnight in FRA but that's pretty annoying.
     
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  6. mullising

    mullising Active Member

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    Wow and awesome, Seth!! Your nifty tool with the latest code was showing the outbound availability listed above but was not seeing return from Del for 31st. If i do have an overnight in FRA, i could possibly drive to Rothenburg leaving the bags with the airline. I probably wont be using CA and switching in JFK / LGA since i have a couple small kids.

    The desired mode of travel would be Y class on outbound and J class on the inbound. The Itin would be 3 days in IST (15-18), Leave 19th to DEL. This routing is usually our winter trip (would be the third in 3 years) and first time on *A and via IST.

    Question on availability, should i grab what i see or you suggest waiting to optimize?

    thanks

    Murali
     
  7. Flyer1976
    Original Member

    Flyer1976 Gold Member

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    ALWAYS grab whatever works and then trip improve!
     
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  8. genemk2

    genemk2 Gold Member

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    But bear in mind that if you aren't Platinum or 1K, you may incur fees if you change later on. The fees are per person, and could be cumulative (up to $150 per person).
     
  9. mullising

    mullising Active Member

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    I am neither 1K or Plat. that is why i am trying to optimize - but have never had any experience with *A availability.
     
  10. mullising

    mullising Active Member

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    So, i was able to get 4 seats. I suppose, if i get to ORD, i will pony up the money to get AUS at a Decent time for the New Years.. I did not see anything IST - DEL which was not in Y only Business class.

    12/14 AUS - IAH - FRA - IST

    IST - DEL??

    12/31 DEL - FRA - ORD

    12/31 ORD - AUS ??
     
  11. Wandering Aramean
    Original Member

    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    Call in and ask the agent to waitlist you on ORD-AUS (or via IAH). They can add that on now and it might clear.

    Assuming you booked this as a regular round trip award I'd keep an eye on the IST-DEL (manually or with one of the alert tools available) and should it become available call in and add it to the reservation. You'll pay the $75 fee per ticket but that's less than booking a new award or buying the ticket in cash.
     
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  12. mullising

    mullising Active Member

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    thanks! until then IST-DEL would be open jaw if the award ticket goes through?
     
  13. Wandering Aramean
    Original Member

    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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  14. mullising

    mullising Active Member

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    OK, i think i may have an itinerary - but not sure if it is allowed or not. please let me know your thoughts.

    OUTBOUND: (Economy)
    AUS-JFK-FLR Dec 13th
    open jaw
    NAP-MUC-DEL Dec 18th

    RETURN: (Business)
    DEL-IST Jan 1st
    stopover
    IST-AUS Jan 3rd

    I am having hard time with travel agents. Can some one help me understand what am i doing wrong? My notion is that this would be a 100K per person ticket (one way coach / one way business). Even though i have one open jaw and one stop over I was told that i have 2 stop overs. Second because Italy is an open jaw, the system is expecting me back to Austin in a straight forward fashion and not through Delhi. I am thoroughly confused. Additionally i was told that i would have to talk to around the world travel agents. What am i doing wrong?

    thanks

    Murali
     
  15. edekba

    edekba Gold Member

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    You have 2 stopover, one in Italy and one in IST.


    If you paid for your own from DEL to IST. that would work I think
     
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  16. mullising

    mullising Active Member

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    ok so you are suggesting two tickets?

    Ticket 1: AUS-FLR OPEN JAW-NAP-DEL
    Ticket 2: DEL-IST-AUS
    --
    One option i was thinking of was

    Ticket 1: AUS-FLR- OPEN JAW -NAP-IST- STOP OVER -AUS
    Ticket 2: IST-DEL-IST

    Of course i would have to match the dates and times.
     
  17. edekba

    edekba Gold Member

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    Option 2 would work...


    But I think best bang for buck

    USA - Italy (open jaw stopover) - India (destination). Pay your own one way to IST. ( open jaw) IST - USA.
     
  18. mullising

    mullising Active Member

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    oddly enough, the system will not price for USA - Italy (open jaw / stop over) - Italy - India (destination). It expects me to route back to usa. In other words, I can do USA - Italy (open jaw) Italy - USA.
     

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