Airline Reference Guide

Below is key information on Airline Award Charts and Airline Award Travel from a North American perspective.  Please help us all by letting me know of any mistakes or improvements.

Oneworld

OneWorld Members:  American Airlines, British Airways, Cathay Pacific, Finnair, Iberia, Japan Airlines (JAL), LAN (South America; merging with TAM to form LATAM), Malev (Hungry), Mexicana (ceased operations in bankruptcy), Qantas (Australia), Royal Jordanian, S7 (Russia)

Other American Airlines Partners: Airberlin (Germany), Air Pacific (Fiji), Air Tahiti Nui (Redeem only), Alaska Airlines / Horizon Air, Cape Air (Missouri; Redeem only), GOL (Brazil), Gulf Air (Middle East), Hawaiian Airlines, Jet Airways (India), Jet Blue (Earn Only and only for select markets, generally to/from JFK and BOS)

Key Credit Card Affiliations: Citibank American AAdvantage Cards, Amex Membership Rewards -> British Airways (30% bonus until 1/31/2012)

Rewards Search:  American Airlines doesn’t allow for partner rewards search on its website, however, Qantas does and BA does with some limitations.  To do a search,  sign up for a free (unless you tell them you live in Australia or New Zealand) Qantas account, then search with the Qantas Award Ticket Search Engine

Award Charts

  • American
  • American Partners
  • American Oneworld Zone Award Chart – Note that distance-based Oneworld Awards usually require more miles for the same flight with simple routing, but they allow for unlimited stopovers (up to 16 total segments) though only one open jaw
  • British Airlines Avios – note they don’t have a chart, but instead use a calculator since it is mileage based (I include this since many of my readers either got a BA credit card when they were giving out a 100k sign-on bonus or want to use Amex Membership rewards points on Oneworld)

Key AA Rules

  • Hold Period: 5 days if >=15 days prior, 1 day if <= 14 days, 2 hours if <= 24 hours
  • Award Seats availability opens 330 days prior to departure; for very popular flights (e.g., JFK-CDG on a friday in August) consider checking the second the inventory becomes available!
  • Within North America there are no stopovers allowed (must connect within 4 hours if available otherwise within 24 hours or need a second ticket)
  • For overseas flights, you can stopover at the North American gateway(generally the last city your are in before you leave North America or the first you arrive back in) and can spend up to 24 hours in other connecting cities (like when I stopped over for about 12 hours in Toykyo on my honeymoon leveraging the bullet train and getting to have breakfast at the fish market, lunch at a Katsu place, see a friend from b-school and toured the imperial palace)
  • Free to changes dates/times of award flights on the same routing; $150 to cancel and get your miles back

Specials

Star Alliance

Star Alliance Members: ADRIA (Slovenia), Aegean, Air Canada, Air China, Air New Zealand, ANA (Japan; aka All Nippon Airways), Asiana Airlines, Austrian, Blue1 (Finland), British Midland International (BMI), Brussels Airlines, Continental Airlines (merging with United), Croatia Airlines, Egyptair, Ethiopian, LOT Polish Airlines, Luftansa (Germany), Scandinavian Airlines (SAS), Singapore Airlines, South African Airways, Swiss, TAM (Brazil; merging with TAM to form LATAM), TAP Portugal, Thai, Turkish Airlines, United, US Airways

Other United Partners: Aer Lingus (Ireland), Emirates (UAE), Hawaiian Airlines, Island Air (Hawaii), Jet Airways (India), Qatar Airways, TACA (Central/South America)

Key Credit Card Partners: Chase Ultimate Rewards -> United, Chase United cards, Chase Continental cards, Barclays US Air cards, Amex Membership Rewards ->ANA

Award Charts

 

SkyTeam

Sky Team Members: Aeroflot Russian Airlines, Aeromexico, Air Europa, Air France, Alitalia (Italy), China Airlines, China Eastern, China Southern, Czech Airlines, KLM Royal Dutch Airlines, Kenya Airways, Korean Air, Tarom (Romania), Vietnam Airlines

Non-Skyteam Delta Partners: Alaska Airlines, GOL (Brazil), Hawaiian Airlines, Jet Airways (India), Kingfisher Airlines (India), Malaysia Airlines, Olympic Air (Greece), Virgin Australia

Key Credit Card Affiliations: Amex Membership Rewards -> Delta, Amex Delta Skymiles cards, Diners Club

Award Charts

Key Independents

Easy Jet

  • Awards: No awards program
  • Key Credit Card Affiliations: none in USA

Eithad

  • Key Credit Card Affiliations: None in USA, but MBNA in the UK

 

Emeriates

  • Key Credit Card Affiliations: None in USA, but Citibank in the UAE

Hawaiian Airlines

  • Awards: 20k OW Hawaii <-> Continental US; Hawaiian Airlines Award ChartPartner Chart
  • Key Credit Card Affiliations: Bank of America Hawaiian Airlines Visa Signature Card, Bank of Hawaii Hawaiian Airlines Visa Signature Card
  • Partners: American, Delta, Jet Blue (Announced 1/23/12) Korean Airlines, United, Virgin Atlantic

Jet Blue

  • Awards:  True Blue Search (True Blue has variable pricing on awards)
  • Key Credit Card Affiliations: Amex Membership Rewards, Jet Blue Amex
  • Partners: American (Earn Only and only for select markets, generally international), Hawaiian Airlines (Announced 1/23/12)

Ryan Air

  • Awards: No awards program
  • Key Credit Card Affiliations: none in USA

Southwest

  • Awards: Rapid Rewards are formulaic.  The points required for a flight equal 60 times a discount coach fare, 100 times full fare coach and 120 times business class fares
  • Key Credit Card Affiliations: Chase Southwest Cards, Diners Club

Virgin Atlantic

  • Awards: Virgin Atlantic Spending Calculator
  • Key Credit Card Affiliations: Amex Membership Rewards (targeted 30% bonus until 1/13/2012), Bank of American Virgin Amex Cards
  • Airline Partners: Air China, Air New Zealand, ANA, British Midland International (BMI), Gulf Air, Hawaiian Airlines, Jet Airways, Malaysia Airlines, SAS, Singapore Airlines, South African Airways, US Airways, Virgin America, V Australia, Virgin Australia

Virgin America

  • Awards: Variable
  • Key Credit Card Affiliations: Amex Membership Rewards, Barclays Virgin America Visa card
  • Airline Partners: Virgin Atlantic, V Australia, Virgin Australia

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