First Class Space from New York to Seoul on the Asiana 777


Asiana recently announced that starting on July 22, it would be flying a new 777-200ER daily on its New York-JFK <-> Seoul-Incheon route with the following flight times.

OZ222 departs Seoul-ICN at 10:00 and arrives New York-JFK at 11:00 AM (same day)

OZ 221 departs New York-JFK at 1:00 PM and arrives Seoul-ICN at 4:10 PM (next day)

This is big news because the three-cabin Asiana 777-200ERs have a fantastic first class. See video of the enclosed suite here (in Korean!):

The Quadra Smartium business class also looks incredible in this Korean video showing the staggered fully flat configuration.

I took a look at the award space on the route, and it looks like this will be a great way to get to Asia in first class with United or US Airways miles.

Award Space from New York to Seoul

Using my technique to trick’s award calendar, I was able to get the calendar to display space for just the New York to Seoul route.

There was no award space in any cabin in the end of July when the new 777-200ER takes over the route.

August and September show good award space in premium cabins and no award space at all in economy. Unfortunately the calendar doesn’t specify whether the premium space is in business or first class. I clicked on several of the dates that are shaded blue. All had one first class seat and no business class seats.

October and November showed a lot more award space.

Economy class space starts to appear at then end of October. In these months, some of the blue and green days have business class, and some flights have more than one award seat.

Space in all cabins

Specifically November 7 has three economy seats, one business class seat, and two first class seats. November 7 is not atypical. These are the days this fall with 2+ award seats in the same cabin from New York to Seoul.

And finally the Christmas and New Year’s space is strong too.

Getting to New York-JFK

Let’s say you don’t live in New York, but you want to enjoy 14 hours 30 minutes of flight from the east coast to Korea. Unfortunately your convenient options are limited. If you are using United mile or US Airways miles, you can fly in on United, US Airways, or Air Canada.

US Airways only flies to JFK from Charlotte and Phoenix. United only flies in from Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Washington-Dulles. Air Canada only flies in from Toronto.

United’s hub in the New York area is Newark. On United and US Airways awards, you are allowed to fly into Newark and out of JFK. It counts as a normal layover. But, of course, it’s not a normal layover. It’s an expensive and inconvenient trip from Newark to JFK. United and US Airways also fly a number of flights into LaGuardia, which is an easier trip to JFK, but still annoying.

The bottom line is that this route is of the most use for people who can use JFK as their home airport.

Connecting to Asia from Incheon

The good news is that this route is of great value even if you don’t want to go to Korea. Asiana flies to dozens of Asian countries from its Seould-Incheon hub with great award space, so you should be able to go anywhere you want in Asia on an award that features the JFK-Seoul leg.

Free Oneways

Like all international United roundtrip awards, this would be eligible for a free oneway. Read the Master Thread: Free Oneways on United Awards. Note that even if you arrive in New York-JFK, your free oneway can depart from Newark or LaGuardia, since the three are coterminal.

Like all international US Airways awards, this would be eligible for a free oneway. Read the Master Thread: Free Oneways on US Airways Awards. Note that even if you arrive in New York-JFK, your free oneway can depart from Newark or LaGuardia, since the three are coterminal.

Bulking Up Your US Airways Balance

US Airways has a sweet spot to North Asia. If you are just flying to Korea, the award would cost only 60k/90k/120k US Airways miles roundtrip in economy/business/first.

Unfortunately US Airways miles are harder to come by than United miles. You can earn 30k US Airways miles on first purchase with the US Airways Premier World MasterCard. The card has an $89 annual fee.

You can also earn SPG Starpoints and transfer them to US Airways miles at a rate of 1 point to 1.25 miles if your transfers are in increments of 20,000 points. That makes the 25k point SPG American Express offer worth 30,000 more US Airways miles.

Application Link: Starwood Preferred Guest American Express


Asiana is going to put a three-cabin aircraft on its New York <-> Seoul route starting July 22. The first and business classes are incredible and have plenty of award space that you can snag with United and US Airways miles.

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  1. I was booked on a US Airways F Australia w/stopover redemption ORD-ICN-SYD,SYD-BKK,BKK-NRT-ORD routing, but now Asiana is stopping their new F suite 777-200ER in mid-September :-(. Called in and got my routing switched to starting in IAD and going through JFK to catch this JFK-ICN route, while keeping the NRT-ORD ANA F Suite with a tacked-on ORD-IAD leg. Not without a lot of hassle and pleading though..

    Strangely when OZ did the aircraft switch for ORD-ICN they appear to have switched anyone booked in O to A, which is a mileage-earning fare class (!). I was willing to give up that chance to fly the suite, but not a bad deal for those who want to stay on ORD-ICN in old F.

  2. Can confirm the awesomeness of the F Suite. Great seat. Great food. Great service. (Cabin was only 3/8). Wow.

    We flew earlier this month ORD-ICN on the way to Thailand.

  3. Hopefully space will be better on this route now that it’s a daily frequency. It was basically every other day to Chicago since they only had one plane equipped with suites. On that route, exactly 2 seats in F opened at T-330 days and was booked up QUICKLY–within 10-15 days, usually. They also didn’t open up seats close-in to departure like a lot of other airlines…

    • Until 7/21, this is on the ICN-ORD flight. The aircraft is moving to the JFK route, and I don’t know if there are other options.


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