Two months ago, thexfactor emailed me to tell me that he’d booked something online at aa.com that was against one of the rules I laid out in The Five Cardinal Rules of American Airlines Awards.
His discovery greatly increases where you can take a free oneway when booking American Airlines awards online. I’ll break down what my research has uncovered about the new possibilities and give a little background on free oneways on AA flights.
Or: Roundtrip Business Class to Europe from One Sign Up Bonus
A few days ago I wrote about the new 50,000 mile sign up bonus on the the Lufthansa Miles & More World MasterCard from Barclay’s.
At the time, I laid out two great uses for the sign up bonus for people not very familiar with the Miles & More program. Unfortunately the Miles & More call center in the US was closed all weekend, so I couldn’t investigate further.
I called today and priced out several more awards, so I can now recommend six great uses (and unrecommend two bad uses) of the sign up bonus.
This post is a full primer of the Miles & More program for people who don’t know much about it, plus those six great uses including roundtrip business class for 55k miles and low taxes, how to book online and by phone, three ways to save miles on a Miles & More booking, and comparisons between Miles & More and United MileagePlus and US Airways Dividend Miles.
Or: A Letter to a Friend’s Mom
My friend’s mom wants to go from Los Angeles to London in early April with her American Airlines miles. This post contains all the information she needs to understand her options.
If you view the specifics of her situation as merely an example, this post should be hugely helpful to you in you want to plan an award to Europe with your American Airlines miles. This post hits on free oneways on American Airlines, fuel-surcharge avoidance, tax avoidance, when to book, specific examples of Aggravating Award Travel Fees and How to Avoid Them, and much more.
Read Part 1 First.
In Part 2: Ruta de Siete Lagos, beer tour, and more
The Lufthansa Miles & More card from Barclay’s is currently offering a 50,000 mile sign up bonus!
- 20,000 Bonus Miles on First Purchase
- 30,000 Bonus Miles after $5,000 spending in 90 days
- 50,000 Bonus Miles total
- $79 annual fee
Application Link: The Lufthansa Miles & More World MasterCard
This new sign up bonus is major news and represents a major upgrade over the standard sign up bonus–a paltry 20,000 miles.
I plan to open the card for myself to take advantage of one of the two best ways to use 50k Lufthansa miles.
San Carlos de Bariloche, Argentina is a mountain town in the Lake District of Patagoina, located about 50km from the Chilean border. It sits right on the edge of the Parque Nacional Nahuel Huapi, drawing visitors from all over to admire the spectacular lake and mountain views.
Scott and I recently decided to use Avios to fly LAN from Buenos Aires to Bariloche for five days. The southern hemisphere has just entered fall. In Patagonia, that means cold weather quickly. Because of this, we wanted to get there as soon as possible to enjoy what little good weather remained (before ski season’s “good” weather.) We knew that the town would be relatively empty as Bariloche’s two peak seasons are the summer and the winter.
For the wonders of Patagonia, keep reading.
I recently had a reader ask me about the best miles to collect to get from Salt Lake City to Cozumel, Mexico. The answer illustrates the best ways to get to the Caribbean and Mexico, so I thought I’d share and expand upon it here.
Near international destinations like Cozumel can be an excellent deal on region-based award charts like those used by American, United, US Airways, and Delta. They can also be a great deal in distance-based programs like those run by British Airways and All Nippon Airways.
How to Get There
The first step is to determine the actual route one would take from Salt Lake City to Cozumel. You could go to kayak.com and search or go to wikipedia for the options. The three shortest in this case are through Houston on United, Dallas on American, and Denver on Frontier.
image from gcmap.com
There are additional ways to get to Cozumel on Delta, Sun Country, United, American, US Airways, Air Canada, and more. But those ways won’t be cheaper, and will be less fun to fly, so let’s ignore them.
The list of the cheapest ways to Cozumel sheds light on transferable points–especially Ultimate Rewards and Membership Rewards–and should help you plan your next near-international getaway.
The standard offer for the Gold Delta SkyMiles personal card is 30,000 bonus SkyMiles after spending $500 in three months. While the miles bonus isn’t eye popping, the spending requirement is very low compared to competitors’ cards, so I have recommended that very low spenders get a Delta personal and business card before.
But for people who have higher spending levels, the low minimum spending requirement is a not a benefit. They would prefer more bonus miles in exchange for a higher spending requirement.
Enter CARDMATCH from creditcards.com. Somehow CARDMATCH has worked out a deal to get exclusive targeted offers from American Express. One of the main ones that people are reporting is a 45,000 SkyMile offer from American Express.
The process to see if you’re eligible for the 45,000 mile offer is simple.
My favorite country–Peru–is on sale!
JetBlue is launching a new Fort Lauderdale to Lima route November 21, marking JetBlue’s first foray into the Southern Hemisphere. To drum up business for the route, JetBlue is selling oneway flights for $139. A roundtrip is $302.
Posted in JetBlue
Next week I am going to Paraguay for eight days. A trip out of Argentina is necessary to renew my 90 day tourist visa, and I wanted to check the sixth South American country off my list, instead of repeating Uruguay, the easy choice. (Only four more CONMEBOL countries to go!)
I’ve never been to Paraguay. I’m sure tons of you have (even though until American Airlines launched a Miami-Asuncion route in November, there were no direct flights between the US and Paraguay.)
I will arrive in Asuncion and leave from Ciudad del Este. I speak Spanish. I enjoy the outdoors. I enjoy nightlife. I am not a foodie, but I enjoy delicious staples in quantity. It’s a bit vague, but I want to do awesome things, incredible things, things few have done, and things I can’t do elsewhere.
If you’ve been to Paraguay, any tips are greatly appreciated in the comments!
If you haven’t been, amuse yourself with possibly the least enticing wikitravel entry ever. Under the Do category:
Posted in MileValue