UPDATE 8/16: Did you nab one of these ridiculous ANA Business Class fares between Vancouver and Sydney? As long as your booking was actually ticketed then ANA will honor it. There are even some people who did not initially receive an e-ticket number at the time of purchase reporting that ANA is still honoring their tickets after calling in. Congratulations to everyone going to Sydney!
I tweeted this deal first from @MileValueAlerts. Follow @MileValueAlerts on Twitter and follow these directions to get a text message every time I tweet from that account. I tweet from @MileValueAlerts only a few times a month (normally) because it is designed to be used only for the best and most limited-time deals–like mistake fares–so that you aren’t bombarded by text messages.
I’ve personally never posted two days in a row about cheap cash flights (yesterday’s deal to Belize is still going, by the way), but I couldn’t help myself today. $717 CAD roundtrip ($566 USD) between Canada and Australia in ANA Business Class is a crazy deal. Since this could be a mistake fare:
- Book the flights now, but lay off hotel or tour bookings until at least a few weeks pass because ANA may try to cancel these tickets.
- There may be other departure and arrival cities with similar prices. Search for your own. My searching would limit how quickly this post goes up, which would be a problem since this deal will last only minutes or hours.
- When are the cheap fares?
- Mileage Earning
- Baggage Allowance
- Best Credit Card to Buy the Ticket
When are the cheap fares?
The easiest way to see the cheap fares is on Google Flights. The travel dates I’ve seen span from the end of this month through mid November, but as I said before do your own searching to see what you can come up with. Secret Flying has examples of travel dates they’ve found.
I brought up this calendar of roundtrip prices between Sydney and Vancouver on Google Flights.
You can’t purchase tickets directly on Google Flights, but after choosing an outbound and return flight you will be given links to follow to buy on ANA’s website.
To get the lowest price of $717 CAD, you have to buy the ticket through Momondo.
You’ll save about $30 but at the expense of potentially worse customer service in case of needing a change or cancellation.
You need to know the fare class when looking up how many redeemable miles cash flights earn, which you can find using ITA Matrix. This ANA flight is fare class Z.
Without status, if you flew Vancouver > (connection in Tokyo) > Sydney; Sydney > (connection in Tokyo) > Vancouver, you’d earn about 23,863 ANA miles.
Or you could credit to United and (without status) earn 150% of the distance flown, which if you flew Vancouver > (connection in Tokyo) > Sydney; Sydney > (connection in Tokyo) > Vancouver, would be 28,637 United miles.
To look at options crediting redeemable miles to other Star Alliance programs, check out Where to Credit Butt in Seat Miles: Flying United Airlines.
Wheretocredit.com is also a valuable tool to bookmark for help figuring out where to credit your redeemable miles earned for a cash ticket.
If you care about status with United, you’ll also earn Elite Qualifying Miles as well as Elite Qualifying Segments–read more here.
You get a free personal item and free carry on as well as two free checked bags, each of which can weigh up to 70 lb.
Best Way to Buy the Ticket
If you have enough Membership Rewards and an American Express Business Platinum Card, you could buy this ticket by Paying with Points (through the Amex Travel Portal), which gives you a 50% points rebate on all Business and First Class fares if you applied by May 31, 2017. If you applied after May 31, you get a 35% points rebate.
Those that have had the card longer will effectively be getting 2 cents of value per point on all Business/First fares after that rebate. A $594 roundtrip Business Class fare (how much it would cost if you purchased through the Amex Travel Portal) between Vancouver and Sydney would be only 29,700 Membership Rewards (59,400 before the rebate). Those that got the Amex Business Platinum after May 31 would effectively pay 39,600 Membership Rewards.
Both of those point prices are incredible compared to the 140,000 to 230,000 legacy airline miles you’d pay roundtrip for such a flight. Not to mention the Membership Rewards is all you’d ultimately pay. With traditional miles, you’d pay taxes on the award as well. You’d even earn redeemable miles as well as elite credits on the trip, which you wouldn’t if you were redeeming miles on the ticket as an award.
If you don’t have an American Express Business Platinum/enough Membership Rewards to Pay with Points upfront, buy it with an Amex Platinum card for 5x earnings. Don’t have one those either? Check out the Best Credit Card to Buy Airfare. More concerned with travel insurance? Check out Travel Protection Benefits of Chase, Citi, & Amex Cards: Comparison Chart.
Act fast people. This fare could be gone at any moment.
Hat tip Secret Flying