How to Get to Australia and New Zealand with American Airlines Miles Part 1

Australia and New Zealand are a tough place to get to with miles, especially if you want to go from mid-December through March, which encompasses Christmas, New Year's, and the Southern Hemisphere's summer.

Having booked several trips to Australia and New Zealand for myself, family, and others through my Award Booking Service, I'll share some tips on getting there with American Airlines miles.


American Airlines allows oneway bookings at half the price of roundtrip awards.

Choosing Between a Free Stopover and a Free Oneway on United Awards

United allows one free stopover on roundtrip awards. I've discovered and posted extensively on how this free stopover can be turned into a free oneway. See Free Oneways on United Awards.

A free oneway is a oneway trip to your home airport before your main award or from your home airport after your award. To unlock a free oneway, you need to conserve your United award's free stopover.

Why? Because you need to take that free stopover at your home airport.

United Announces New Dreamliner Routes

Per the LA Times, the new Boeing 787 Dreamliner routes will be:

Houston (IAH) to Amsterdam (AMS) starting December 4

Houston (IAH) to London (LHR) starting February 4

Los Angeles (LAX) to Tokyo (NRT) starting January 3

Los Angeles (LAX) to Shanghai (PVG) starting March 30

These are in addition to the already announced:

Denver (DEN) to Tokyo (NRT)

Houston (IAH) to Lagos (LOS)

Despite the announcement, has not been updated to show the new aircraft on the routes.

I stumbled upon the news while researching a post about getting an award on the Dreamliner.

Also while researching the

How to Use Wikipedia to Book Awards Like a Pro

Tom writes:

I've seen you mention wikipedia a couple of times when talking about building awards and figuring out where airlines fly - what exactly do you use wikipedia for?  Have you done a post about this?

I did write one post that touched on using wikipedia: Book Awards Like a Pro: Routing Ideas. But I'll answer the question of how I use wikipedia more fully.

For me, the two best places to get routing ideas are and wikipedia.