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Buy AA miles?

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Kiwi Flyer

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Ordinarily buying FF miles isn't worthwhile unless need just a few to top off an award. I'm not in that category with AAdvantage (only a few thousand miles).

Can buy 40,000 miles each calendar year, for US$1030.
Up until 31 December get 20% bonus thanks to scratch game.

Business award intra Oz/NZ 35,000 miles - includes stopover so can structure to get trans-tasman trip + a domestic one from a single award, I think.

So US$2060 buys 88,000 miles and gets 2 business awards plus most of an economy award (will have enough with current balance).

Thoughts?
 

simongr

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Not sure I would consider it other than to top up as you suggest. $2080 for two J returns to say Melb is about break even - but if it meant making that trip to the US I might consider it.
 

Kiwi Flyer

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I wouldn't use it for just east coast but somewhere further, like PER or DRW. Plus factor in a couple of domestic in NZ flights each award.

You've got me thinking though. 90k not enough for US, but is enough for 1 first class award to CMB. Hmmmm.
 

Mal

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I did think about this.

I really want to visit parts of Australia that are fairly prohibitive via normal airfares (Uluru / Alice Springs etc). Even Perth is getting too expensive using ordinary fares (and is prohibitive in J class now!)

Imagine if I could book these into one trip using AA miles....

Alas, never really worked out the full economics of doing it.
 

StevePER

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I tried to buy AA miles for PER-SYD-PPT//IPC-PPT-SYD-PER but it didn't work out due to lack of availability on Air Tahiti Nui. Instead I spent $1228.70 on United miles (after 3000 miles sign up bonus and 10% bonus on purchased miles) and redeemed them for PER-AKL-PPT return in J. This trip would cost $1523 in economy (according to Zuji) so it's excellent value! :D

Steve
 

Kiwi Flyer

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StevePER that is the best value award in this part of the world, although that econ price looks a bit high (especially compared with current NZ sale fares). A shame it is the old business class though.
 

Soundguy

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I considered buying some AA miles when they had the +20% offer before December 31, however by the time they add on a heft processing fee and taxes it just didn't seem worthwhile to me, even with the incentive offer.
 

StevePER

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Kiwi Flyer said:
StevePER that is the best value award in this part of the world, although that econ price looks a bit high (especially compared with current NZ sale fares). A shame it is the old business class though.
Better to be in old business than new economy! I tried getting a price off the NZ website but it won't give me one.
 

Kiwi Flyer

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It possibly doesn't have a through fare loaded. Current sale is ex-NZ.
 

futaris

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That looks like great value. NB, How many points is it to PPT / IPC from Australia?
 

StevePER

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futaris said:
That looks like great value. NB, How many points is it to PPT / IPC from Australia?
Business class is 40,000 United miles flying Air New Zealand or 60,000 AA miles flying Air Tahiti Nui. Economy is 20,000 and 40,000 respectively. The AA award can (theoretically) get you to IPC with LAN but the United award can't.

Steve
 

futaris

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Ahh, so it falls in the South Pacific - South Pacific Zoning for an AA award?

I think award flights to IPC always go really quickly, and you'd probably need to use something like ExpertFlyer, or ITN to find availability.

Does anyone know if you can get an PPT-IPC return fare easily / cheaply?
 

Dave Noble

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futaris said:
Ahh, so it falls in the South Pacific - South Pacific Zoning for an AA award?
You can also, if needed, do it as a OW Award for 60/80/100 k points for X/U/Z respectively though it would involve going via SCL

Dave
 

StevePER

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futaris said:
Ahh, so it falls in the South Pacific - South Pacific Zoning for an AA award?

I think award flights to IPC always go really quickly, and you'd probably need to use something like ExpertFlyer, or ITN to find availability.

Does anyone know if you can get an PPT-IPC return fare easily / cheaply?
Yes, IPC is in South Pacific according to AA. ExpertFlyer won't help you with award availability on LAN, but I'm not sure about ITN (I could never work out how to use ITN anyway). I signed up for a LANpass account but the availability seems to be slightly different to what's available to QF.

If flying Australia-PPT-IPC you're going to run into problems with schedules. There are no flights that connect on the way to IPC and only one flight a week that connects on the way back. AA won't let you have a stopover on an award booking so the only way around it is to book an open jaw award and then book PPT-IPC separately (good use of a QF award probably).

The cheapest place I found for PPT-IPC is on lan.com - US$570 but it looks like you have to book a reasonable amount in advance.

Steve
 

futaris

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I didn't think you could book Tahiti - Easter Island through QF.
 

Kiwi Flyer

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futaris said:
I didn't think you could book Tahiti - Easter Island through QF.
The awards referred to above are AAdvantage awards, and also paid flights (no QF codes as you point out).
 

futaris

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Can you book one-way flights with LAN though? LAN.com only sells return trips, right?

It seems that the return is cheaper than the one-way anyway...
 

StevePER

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futaris said:
I didn't think you could book Tahiti - Easter Island through QF.
You can definitely book this as an award flight through QF. I booked PPT-SCL-EZE and IPC-PPT on Tuesday.

I'm pretty sure you can book one-ways on lan.com, but as you noticed the return is cheaper anyway.
 

futaris

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Is PPT in the drop down list on the Online QFF award booking system though?
 

StevePER

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futaris said:
Is PPT in the drop down list on the Online QFF award booking system though?
No, they can only be booked over the phone (after paying the 2500 points phone fine).
 
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