US Airways charges the same price for three-cabin First Class within the United States and Canada as it does for two-cabin First Class or Business Class.

Screen Shot 2014-05-21 at 7.08.12 AM

I consider this a mistake rooted in the fact that US Airways only operates two-cabin planes within the United States as did its former partner United (with a few exceptions.)

But US Airways’ new partners American Airlines and Cathay Pacific both operate three-cabin planes within the United States on a few routes:

  • New York-JFK to Los Angeles (American Airlines)
  • New York-JFK to San Francisco (American Airlines)
  • New York-JFK to Vancouver (Cathay Pacific)

I expect that at some point soon, US Airways will charge 65k miles for roundtrip awards on these three routes, so book them now for big savings.

If you’re short on US Airways miles, The US Airways® Premier World MasterCard® offers 40,000 bonus miles after first purchase.

  • How is award space on these three routes?
  • How can you book the award space with US Airways miles?
  • How is Cathay Pacific First Class?

Award space is excellent on all three routes in First Class.

Los Angeles <-> New York

The best First Class award space is found between Los Angeles and New York on American Airlines’ brand new A321s, which feature 10 fully flat bed First Class seats in a 1-1 configuration.

Award space is excellent on the route in the height of summer 2014.
Screen Shot 2014-05-21 at 2.07.51 AM

Award space is excellent during Spring 2015.

Screen Shot 2014-05-21 at 2.08.21 AM

The only real gaps in award space are the week around Thanksgiving and the two weeks around Christmas and New Year’s Day.

Screen Shot 2014-05-21 at 2.10.01 AM

Screen Shot 2014-05-21 at 2.09.29 AM

On many days, you have your pick of several flights with award space.

Screen Shot 2014-05-21 at 2.11.38 AM

I put together a three-day trip to New York, which would cost 65,000 American Airlines miles and $5.

Screen Shot 2014-05-21 at 2.12.15 AM

US Airways has access to the exact same award space for 50k miles and $30. The extra $25 is the unavoidable “Award Processing Fee” US Airways charges on all awards. For most international awards, the fee is $50 per ticket.

Screen Shot 2014-05-21 at 7.42.36 AM

New York <-> San Francisco

American’s New York to San Francisco is operated by the same A321s and has a similar award space picture, though award space opens up a little later in 2014 than on the Los Angeles route.

Starting from mid-August through the end of March 2015, award space is wide open in First Class.

Screen Shot 2014-05-21 at 7.25.24 AM

Screen Shot 2014-05-21 at 7.25.32 AM

Again these flights would cost 50k US Airways miles and $30 roundtrip. Or you could mix and match and fly one way from Los Angeles to New York and return to San Francisco for the same price.

New York <-> Vancouver

Cathay Pacific operates one daily flight between Hong Kong and New York with a stop each way in Vancouver. You can book just the New York to Vancouver leg in either direction with cash or miles.

The flight in First Class would cost 32,500 American Airlines miles each way, 37,500 British Airways Avios each way, or 50k US Airways miles roundtrip.

Screen Shot 2014-05-21 at 7.21.49 AM
Roundtrip Price Options with Avios

Cathay Pacific is one of the world’s nicest First Class beds, and the airline boasts world class service. Check out my trip report of flying Cathay Pacific First Class from New York to Hong Kong.

IMG_0031

Award space on this route is excellent at the last minute and at off peak times like winter 2014.

Screen Shot 2014-05-21 at 7.21.56 AM

Recap

You can book top notch First Class products within the United States and Canada for only 50k US Airways miles roundtrip and as little as $30 out of pocket.

This is 15k to 25k miles cheaper than the exact same American Airlines and Cathay Pacific flights would cost with American Airlines or British Airways miles. The discount is a mistake carried over from a time when US Airways and its old partners basically didn’t have any three-cabin first class flights.

In addition, The US Airways® Premier World MasterCard® offers 40,000 bonus miles after first purchase.

I expect US Airways to start charging more miles for three cabin First Class within the next 10 months. We know The US Airways® Premier World MasterCard® will disappear within the next 10-11 months.

If this deal interests you, act now.

Chase Sapphire Preferred

Earn 80,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards Points after you spend $4,000 spend in 3 months

Just getting started in the world of points and miles? The Chase Sapphire Preferred is the best card for you to start with.

With a bonus of 80,000 points after $4,000 spend in the first 3 months and 2x points earned on dining and travel spend, this card truly cannot be beat for getting started!

Learn More

Editorial Disclaimer: The editorial content is not provided or commissioned by the credit card issuers. Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of the credit card issuers, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the credit card issuers.

The comments section below is not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved, or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser’s responsibility to ensure all questions are answered.