MR to BA/OneWorld or Star Alliance for India trip?

Discussion in 'American Express | Membership Rewards' started by ibn_battuta, Jul 21, 2011.  |  Print Topic

  1. ibn_battuta

    ibn_battuta Active Member

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    Hi everyone!
    just scored a whole lot of MR points through the platinum card signup - they "bumped my bonus" to 100K with very little effort on the phone. Thanks to everyone who posted information!
    I have been trying to get points with a specific trip in mind - a comfortable trip on Business class to India from the US sometimes next year for the wife and me.
    We have 50K each in our UA/CO account and 100K each in our BA account (all thru credit cards).
    The question is whether to transfer MR points (~140k) to BA using the 50% bonus before July 31 or transfer to CO before september.
    Points wise..what makes sense? I could transfer 70K each to our UA/CO accounts - 120K in each should be enough for a *alliance ticket ? how is availabilty?
    I think BA has decent availability to India but I know traveling BA would incur HUGE charges. One possible way around that is to fly Cathay Pacific. I live on the west coast so a JFK-HKG-DEL/BOM would be a heck of a trip. Has anybody done that ?
    Looking forward to hearing your thoughts/advice
    Thanks!

    p.s - advance apologies if i missed a post on milepoint that discusses something similar. i did try searching!

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ibn_battuta
     
  2. Toula
    Original Member

    Toula Gold Member

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    Before you make any decision I would be putting in a bit of time on their search engines to see what availablity comes up. From my own experience I have never had too much trouble getting a booking on Cathay from SFO to HKG, however it seems as if it is only First Class or Economy available for redemption. I just ran a quick search thru BA and there seems to be plenty of Business Class available for HKG to BOM in March next year. That leg was 40k +$152 per person.
     
  3. LAXtraveler
    Original Member

    LAXtraveler Gold Member

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    I recently had to get someone a trip to KTM who had 0 mileage anywhere pretty much. Got them signed up for some nice sign-up bonuses via BA/Amex and got them enough mileage for a Business ticket. Worked out well considering it was an all or nothing deal. Routing is interesting (2 one way tickets)...

    LAX-LHR (BA C)
    LHR-DEL (Jet Airways [9W?] C)
    DEL-KTM

    Dragonair/Cathay all the way home in C
    KTM-HKG
    HKG-LAX

    Saved some cash by only going through LHR one way (couldn't get HKG on the departure date from LAX/SFO), plus get some nice perks, like Jet's new 777 business with bar and CX C service from HKG-LAX.

    I know the person I helped was happy, even if others might have wanted something better.

    POINT OF THE STORY... if you do the right research before you can get a trip that works out for you!
     
  4. cmj542
    Original Member

    cmj542 Silver Member

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    You can always call the awards desk to check availability or search on their respective sites. Availability is constantly changing, and what someone might post on this board might be different the next day. There could be a spot on BA today, and it could be gone tomorrow (same goes with CO). So, its best to do the research on your own right when you want to book.

    BA allows you to search for partner flights via their award site and see how many points and what is required for booking. Check out thePointsGuy website for more info on booking BA: http://thepointsguy.com/2011/04/how-to-use-british-airways-miles-post-4-spotlight-on-taxes-and-fees/ .

    Continental also lets you search for partner star alliance awards on their flight.

    Membership Reward points are usually instant for Continental (not sure about BA but I'm pretty sure its the same). So what you can do is figure out what flights, transfer, and book right away.

    You can always use an award booking service to book as well. Try http://pointspros.com/ or http://thepointsguy.com/about/ if you want to save the time spent researching.
     
  5. Toula
    Original Member

    Toula Gold Member

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    BA points are instant when you transfer from Membership Rewards. I did a transfer yesterday, got off the phone, logged out of my BA account and logged straight back in and the points were there.
     

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