Which Alliance for Which Trip?

Discussion in 'General Discussion | Miles/Points' started by Ed Chandler, Sep 5, 2012.  |  Print Topic

  1. Ed Chandler
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    Ed Chandler Silver Member

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    Hey, all, just looking for some broad advice.

    Looks like I'm going to MAD in March of 2013.
    Probably going to MNL and perhaps BKK in October of 2013.

    I'll easily have enough points in either Star Alliance or OneWorld to make the trips in the back of the plane. I may be able to scrape together enough points for a premium cabin award. Either way, what are everyone's thoughts about which alliance I should use for which trip and why?

    (Edit: In retrospect, I failed to note that balances won't be sufficient to support a premium cabin for both trips on the same alliance. So the question is which alliance you would prefer if you had to do one trip on Star and the other on OneWorld.)

    Thanks.
     
  2. TheTravelAbstract

    TheTravelAbstract Silver Member

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    Much depends on where you are flyin out of.

    Star Alliance is good for BKK. With Thai airways direct from LAX and United from IAD. Also has good coverage going through Frankfurt on Lufthansa and continuing on Thai.

    Madrid has lots of options but stay away from BA and LHR if you don't want to pay fuel surcharges.
     
  3. Ed Chandler
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    Ed Chandler Silver Member

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    Excellent advice. Thanks. Yeah, the origination point might help, huh? :( I'll be flying out of ORD.

    As for BA, yep, I knew that one. ;)

    I know there are a ton of options ... just asking what general advice others can offer. I've got a boat-load of Avios, so I could always transfer those from BA to IB and fly their metal to MAD, but it seems like it'd make more sense to use AAdvantage miles on AA or IB since Avios is distance-based now. I could also use Avios for a short-haul positioning flight if that makes a flight out of another airport worth doing so.

    I guess my real quandary is what to do with the MNL/BKK trip. I have zero experience going west of HNL, so any advice there is much-appreciated in advance. In general, I know I can get just about anywhere with UAs generous award routing rules. AA ... not so much, but if there's a hidden advantage (no pun intended) to using one over the other when going to Asia. I'm all ears.
     
  4. edekba

    edekba Gold Member

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    Cant you do MAD through IBeria?
     
  5. Ed Chandler
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    Ed Chandler Silver Member

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    Yes, I sure can. (Our replies may have crossed.)

    Maybe I'm still not posing my question correctly. My fault -- here's another try.

    I know I can get where I want to go with either alliance. Availability isn't the question.

    The question is whether there's some reason I'm not considering other than availability that would influence my decision one way or the other. I'm shooting from the hip here, but examples might be:
    • "UAs rules will let you do MNL as a stopover en route to BKK while AAs rules do not."
    • "AA is partners with [blah] and their [class] product is much better than the other options."
    • "Because of [blah] it's much more efficient point-wise to do Asia with [one alliance] and Europe with [the other one]."
    I'm just making those up, but that's the kind of general advise I'm looking for -- just the stuff that one might not otherwise consider without having the experience.
    Thanks again.
     
  6. edekba

    edekba Gold Member

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    LOL well those 2 points would make me choose *A for Asia and AA for Eu :)

    Saying that; from what i've read/seen i prefer TG prem cabins over Iberia. I've always flown coach; simply because out of the same # of miles I can go 12 times vs 7.
     
  7. Ed Chandler
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    Ed Chandler Silver Member

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    I hear you on coach. I weigh a buck-fifty, I don't check bags, and the back of the plane actually touches down first. ;)

    Nevertheless, the MNL/BKK trip is for the wife's birthday and she is (to quote Darth Vader), "not as forgiving as I am." Might be nice to fly that in style. The MAD trip is to walk the Camino (I'll start a different thread about that when I have time) and since my wife is putting up with the hike, it might be nice to relax on that flight as well.

    There are arguments both ways. Just looking for general advice.
     

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