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AU to MLE flight options

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The strife in the middle East has my +1 worried about our January holiday (which is currently to include a driving holiday in the UAE) which she now wants to alter and I am far from an Int reward aficionado.

Currently we hold reward bookings for 3 pax
SYD-AUH (VA),
AUH-MLE (EY),
CMB-SIN (SQ),
SIN-BNE (EY).

The sector not yet booked was to be MLE-CMB.

We have about 141,000 VS miles and 330,000 VA miles (including the above mentioned "cancellable" reward bookings) and little of anything else but we do each have a USDM account, QF account (about 20,000 miles), AA account and a Life Miles account and have no real objection to a points top up (USDM have a double points promo finishing today I believe).

We don't care really where we go (my +1 has suggested Italy would be nice, James ;)), but are constrained by our fixed Conrad Rangali booking for Jan 13 - Jan 20 and realistically could travel between 1 Jan and 26 Jan.

I have VA plat status and my +1 is a VA gold. I also have EK silver. We don't mind the class, but obviously the higher the better.

If anyone (especially those with experience in USDM or Avianca Life Mile "specials") would like to help us out with options, I'd be more than happy to chip in somewhat more than the suggested "help fee" to a negotiated figure as I realise there is a lot of work and effort in chasing good rewards.

Any takers (please :mrgreen:)
 

docjames

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Why are you concerned about visiting the UAE? are you "mixing" the Syria / Iraq issues as they are not altering the level of safety in Abu Dhabi or Dubai which I assume are the two emirates you are (were) planning on visiting?

What sort of time gaps soupy have between current flights as booked? Your best option may be to redeem a side trip from AUH in between current bookings, even if you end up having to pay $$ if there's no award availability.
 
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Why are you concerned about visiting the UAE? What sort of time gaps soupy have between current flights as booked? Your best option may be to redeem a side trip from AUH in between current bookings, even if you end up having to pay $$ if there's no award availability.
Currently booked time gaps are 7 Days in the UAE, 7 days in the Maldives, 4 days in Sri Lanka and 2 days in Singapore in that order.

To be clear "I" am not worried about the UAE. My +1 is and to be honest, it's not totally silly as the AU base for operations against IS is Dubai. To add to that, apparently she has twice heard a local radio station here on the GC reporting that Dubai as a destination should be avoided (I have assured her that the official Smart Traveller site gives no such warning), but I don't really want this thread turned into a "Why?" debate. I'd like it to remain clear for those AFFers who may like to assist in looking for alternatives.

The suggestion of a side trip is a good thought and I must admit, I thought about that but just assumed it may be a better use of time to re-evaluate the whole itinerary otherwise the 7 days drops to maybe 3 or 4 usable days depending upon flight schedules.
 

docjames

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Apologies I used "you" in the context meaning you and +1/travelling party - apologies if any offence caused - sloppy language on my behalf.

With 7 days that was originally allocated to Emirates, why not start looking at award availability ex-AUH and return and see if there is anywhere you fancy?
 

docjames

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Italy not so crazy if you can get availability - Milan and Rome both served by EY.

Air Berlin to Berlin?
 

browski

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Italy not so crazy if you can get availability - Milan and Rome both served by EY.

Air Berlin to Berlin?
Unfortunately with the Ebola outbreak in Italy, that will be no good for the OP either.
And with the hostilities between the Tamils and Singhalese in Sri Lanka, it would not be safe to venture outside of the hotel.
Probably best to route to New Zealand............but just the North Island, apparantly the south island is full of Orcs this time of year.
 
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Unfortunately with the Ebola outbreak in Italy, that will be no good for the OP either.
And with the hostilities between the Tamils and Singhalese in Sri Lanka, it would not be safe to venture outside of the hotel.
Probably best to route to New Zealand............but just the North Island, apparantly the south island is full of Orcs this time of year.
Ah, a healthy sprout of sarcasm! Someone very wise once mentioned to me...."Eagles may soar high, but weasels don't get sucked into jet engines"
 
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Any update?
Not so far. TBH, I've been too busy to even think about it although time is counting down. Being just 7 days is the problem. I personally believe that's too short a time to bother with EU anywhere, India is not a huge attraction for us (and once again, to do it justice, 7 days just doesn't cut it). Thought about Asia, but Asia is an easy step from AU at anytime. Sort of leaves us with UAE.
 

docjames

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Not so far. TBH, I've been too busy to even think about it although time is counting down. Being just 7 days is the problem. I personally believe that's too short a time to bother with EU anywhere, India is not a huge attraction for us (and once again, to do it justice, 7 days just doesn't cut it). Thought about Asia, but Asia is an easy step from AU at anytime. Sort of leaves us with UAE.
Bearing in mind Italy etc is only about 6hrs flying time from AUH so no worse than US transcon.


Personally I think your worries about the "risk" of the UAE are greater than the actual"risk" so i'd not be bothered either way, just interested to see what you end up deciding.

If you limit yourself to one or two larger centres in Europe (you could even do open jaw and train/drive between the two) then 7 days is a decent amount of time.
 
D

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I think your worries about the "risk" of the UAE are greater than the actual"risk" so i'd not be bothered either way,
Wise words Doc! Do you make house calls? I have a wife that could use help! (of course she says from me)

I agree with you and browski that there is no real evidence that UAE is anything but a destination where usual cautions are required......however, I have to consider not just my opinion (which I think may have been once wrong, although I cannot confirm that), but my travelling companions......my wife and youngest daughter.

As for EU... I like the concept of a whirlwind romantic visit.......but the reality is, I do whirlwind visits just about every bloody week of the year and an EU whirlwind visit holds about the same attraction for me as a tooth abscess! :(
 

Nizar

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How about somewhere like IST ?
I was there for a day enroute from GRU earlier this year and loved it so much already planned to go back next year for 5 days with my wife.
EY does fly there and its around 4.5 hours from AUH.
 
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Thanks for the suggestion. We're still undecided as to what to do, but without extensive rework, we've pretty much ruled out any EU destinations.
 

support

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