Maximizing The New Alaska Airways Award Chart With Detrimental Worth Stopovers (Higher Than Free)
Alaska Airways is introducing new, distance-based award charts in March. Masking this transformation, I famous that:
- Lengthy haul awards involving connections will typically get costlier. You’re going to pay extra for premium cabin Cathay Pacific and Qantas journeys.
- However their newer, higher-priced companions get cheaper. As an illustration anticipate to pay as a lot as 30% much less for enterprise class on El Al. And continuous awards in a majority of circumstances will get cheaper.
- Brief distance awards in Asia and the Mideast are a tremendous deal at simply 15,000 miles every approach in enterprise class (e.g. Tokyo to Beijing or Shanghai, Bangkok to Hong Kong, and so on. – and you’ll even do a stopover within the worth)
And I wrote that the perfect worth from distance-based charts typically comes from maxing out distance, as an illustration flying West Coast – Tokyo to remain inside a distance band and keep away from going over… but additionally typically by reserving two awards to get the pricing of two shorter distance bands somewhat than the mixed higher-distance band. I’d like to elucidate this a bit of bit extra.
Right here’s the award chart that covers flights between the U.S. and Asia. You’ll discover that there’s a giant worth enhance for one-way journeys over 10,000 miles.
- Itineraries 7,000 – 10,000 miles a technique price 85,000 miles in enterprise class
- Itineraries over 10,000 miles a technique price 130,000 miles in enterprise class, or 45,000 miles extra
So New York – Doha – Bangkok at 9,989 miles prices 85,000 miles, whereas New York – Doha – Singapore at 10,561 miles prices 130,000 miles in enterprise class.
What are you able to do? If you wish to fly New York to Singapore, take into account:
- New York to Bangkok on one ticket (85,000 miles)
- Bangkok to Singapore on a second ticket (15,000 miles)
- Complete price is 100,000 for enterprise class, a financial savings of 30,000 miles
Higher but, since Alaska Airways permits stopovers this may mean you can cease over in Doha and Bangkok.
In reality, say you needed to go to Singapore … however you would even name Singapore a stopover, and add one other flight say to Kuala Lumpur (holding Bangkok to your vacation spot through Singapore, on this case Kuala Lumpur, below 1,500 miles). So for 100,000 miles you go to 4 cities as a substitute of two and save 30,000 miles within the course of.
- New York JFK – Doha (cease)
- Doha – Bangkok (vacation spot, finish ticket one)
- Bangkok – Singapore (cease)
- Singapore – Kuala Lumpur (vacation spot, finish ticket two)
It will all be doable with the brand new chart in March. The primary ticket may be finished with Qatar Airways, and the second with Singapore Airways.
Later in 2024 Alaska will mean you can combine and match companions in a single a technique ticket and that may open up potentialities much more.
You need to be in search of routes that maximize one distance band after which allow you to use a less expensive band as a substitute of reserving your entire a technique as a single award. This may each prevent miles and get you two additional stops for cities to go to. As a substitute of free stopovers, these are damaging worth stopovers.
Frequent Miler covers some further journeys that merely drop in worth utilizing the brand new charts.
- Northeast North America – Europe a technique in enterprise class goes all the way down to 45,000 miles every approach (West Coast 55,000 miles). Iberia awards have been 75,000 miles, so the discount to 45,000 miles is big.
- Royal Air Maroc from the East Coast to Casablanca drops from 100,000 miles in enterprise class to 55,000 miles.
- Typically El Al, Royal Jordanian, and Qatar Airways flights between the U.S. and Mideast get inexpensive.
- As I famous in my unique publish, Icelandair enterprise class will worth as premium economic system, dropping from 55,000 miles one approach to 30,000 or 35,000 relying on the route. That makes it a significantly better worth, clearly.
- Air Tahiti Nui from Los Angeles to Papeete (stopover in Tahiti if you want) to New Zealand drops to 75,000 miles.
Bora Bora as a free stopover, sure please
There are candy spots that may disappear from the outdated Alaska Airways award chart, however there’s loads of upside as effectively. Crucially, they’re revamping this system whereas nonetheless leaving it with unbelievable worth. And going by way of companion awards, that are negotiated bilaterally, is just too cumbersome to do frequently. So hopefully this unified method to companion awards ought to final for fairly awhile at the same time as applications round them devalue.