Posts Tagged With: American Airlines

How I booked Three Business Class tickets to Japan & India for just $150

Introduction

Lets get to the bottom-line. I booked three one-way business class tickets to Japan and on wards to India for a total of $150 (snapshot below of my wife’s CC bill shows three tickets purchased for $48.20 each) while using 70,000 American Airlines miles each way .

Screenshot 2016-01-10 at 2.43.21 PM

$48.20 for each Business class ticket from USA to Japan and onward to India

The tickets usually sell retail at $4000 + each (snapshot below) so this was a great way to redeem miles and simply fly business class on an Amazing Japan Airlines product for just $50 a pop. Guess what at that price my 20 month old son had his own seat!!

Screenshot 2016-01-10 at 2.51.23 PM

JAL Check in

Getting Spoiled at a young age

We thoroughly enjoyed the business class experience from the complimentary lounge access to the amazing food and staff of JAL airlines.

How can anyone do it?

That’s right anyone can do this kind of luxurious travel while paying pennies. I signed up for the AA executive credit card last year when the bonus was 100K AA miles. Citi at that time allowed multiple approval in span of 60 days for the same product and I quickly amassed a huge stash of AA miles (half a million to be precise). I offer free credit card consultation to anyone who is interested in traveling around the world for pennies like we’ve been now doing it for a long time. Feel Free to contact me over the website or by leaving a message below.

Fun In Japan

We stayed at the Hilton Narita Airport Hotel which has a free shuttle pick-up from the Airport every 30 minutes and transfer was very smooth. I used a total of 16000 Hilton points and ~9000 JPY (~$80 USD) total for a two night stay. You can sign-up for the Citi Hilton credit card to earn 60K Hilton points and a free silver status, although I recommend waiting to apply when the sign-up bonus is 80K.

Hilton stay

Zane loving hot dinner at the Hilton Narita after a long flight

We had free breakfast at Hilton due to Diamond Status with Hilton saving us several hundred dollars in meal expenses especially in a city like Tokyo were things can get expensive.

Hilton Bfast

My Hilton Diamond Status gets me free breakfast at Hilton’s worldwide

I booked a 6 hour  private Tokyo city tour  for USD $250 using the website toursbylocals.com and our tour guide Izumi was excellent and very friendly. I charged the $250 on my Capital one venture Credit card and was able to claim all of it as a Travel Credit. Capital One venture card comes with a sign-up bonus of 40,000 Reward points which is good towards $400 in Travel related expenses and you earn 2X points on all purchases.

 

I am in absolute love with Japanese food and culture. Tokyo s very well connected via the subway system  and its very easy to around. The people are so friendly and humble. We visited the Meiji Shrine, Sensoji Temple and a bunch of shopping district for one-day we were there. Street food is inexpensive and extremely delicious.

 Conclusion

We had an amazing family trip to Japan flying Business class in Japan Airlines and staying at a nice hotel while paying pennies. I’d love to get you started on your travel journey and travel around the world as several of my friends, family and clients have been able to do it. Shoot me an email to get you started for an absolutely free consultation.

 

Categories: American Airlines, cheap travel, free travel, JAL AIrlines, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , | Leave a comment

Super Deal Alert – Philly to Las Vegas $36 each way

Crazy Streets of Las Vegas

Getting to Sin City the cheap way

There is an amazing sale on American/US Air flights from Philly to Las Vegas and a couple more west coast cities. This super duper deal may not long last so if you have never been to Vegas you can escape there for just $36 from Philly. You can use Google Flights to see all available dates. Below is a random search I performed for  August 29th and results are below –

Screenshot 2015-08-14 at 7.47.50 PM

Cheapest fares I’ve seen to Vegas from Philly

I am seeing availability on several days from August thru November but again this super sale may not last long.

Categories: American Airlines, cheap travel, Las Vegas | Tags: , , | Leave a comment

Master List of Airline Award Fees – Change Fees, Cancellation Fees, & Phone Booking Fees

Using airline miles for award flights is one of the best ways to travel for less, however if you have to change or cancel an award ticket you’re often hit with high fees. Each airline program has its own award ticket fee policy and may charge you for anything from date or destination changes, refund/redeposit of miles on cancelled tickets, phone booking, and close-in booking. In general airline award fees range from $0 to $150+, but it’s a good idea to know exactly what you’d have to pay before booking so you’re not surprised by any fees if your plans change.

Planning ahead is often the best way to keep fees to a minimum and you’re less likely to have to pay close-in booking fees or change fees if your plans were not set in stone. Of course you’ll want to keep these fees to a minimum to save money on award flights, but in either case when you are using miles for a free flight you sometimes just have to bite the bullet and pay certain fees (such as phone booking) to get the flights you want.

Often times these fees are buried within the airlines website, so I have created a master list of airline fees across the majority of larger airline programs. Included in the table are the most common date and destination fees, cancellation fees, close-in booking fees, and phone booking fees, however some programs have unique policies that don’t fall into these clear-cut categories. There are also links to the airline’s own webpage where the fees are outlined in their verbiage.

As the list will be a work-in-progress I’ll continue to add more information to complete the list. If you see any mistakes, missing information or have helpful information or experience with an airline on the list, please feel free to leave a comment below and I will make updates.

Airline Alliance Change Date Fee Change Destination Fee Refund/Redeposit Fee Close-in Booking Fee Phone Booking Fee Mile Expiration Length Waivers (all fees unless noted) More Details…
AeroMexico Club Premier SkyTeam $26 $26 $26 None N/A 24 months Fees waived for Platinum Club Premier members. See full details at AeroMexico.com
Air Canada Aeroplan Star Alliance $90 $90 $90 up to 22 days prior to departure None $30 CAD 12 months Fees waived for Super Elite 100K members. See full details at Aeroplan.com
AirBerlin OneWorld Domestic awards within Germany or Europe = €50, awards within all other regions = €75 Domestic awards within Germany or Europe = €50, awards within all other regions = €75 No refunds None None 36 months See full details at AirBerlin.com
Air France / KLM Flying Blue SkyTeam €45 (changes not allowed on ‘Promo Awards’, no fees for ‘Flex Awards’) €45 (changes not allowed on ‘Promo Awards’, no fees for ‘Flex Awards’) €45 (changes not allowed on ‘Promo Awards’, no fees for ‘Flex Awards’) None $25 20 months See full details at FlyingBlue.com
Alaska MileagePlan N/A Up to 60 days prior to departure =$0, within 60 days of departure = $125 Up to 60 days prior to departure = $0, within 60 days of departure = $125 Up to 60 days prior to departure =$0, within 60 days of departure = $125 None $15 24 months Fees waived for Gold MVP members. See full details at AlaskaAir.com
Alitalia Mille Miglia SkyTeam None €55 or 5,000 miles €55 or 5,000 miles None 24 months See full details at Alitalia.com
American AAdvantage OneWorld Up to 21 days prior to departure = $0, within 21 days of departure = $150 $150 $150 for first award reservation, $25 for additional reservations $75 $25 18 months All fees waived for Executive Platinum members. Close-in booking fees waived for Gold and higher members. See full details at AA.com
ANA Mileage Club Star Alliance None None 3,000 miles None $25 36 months See full details at ANA.com
Asia Miles Multiple $25 or 1,000 miles $100 $120 or 12,000 miles None 36 months See full details at AsiaMiles.com
British Airways Avios OneWorld $55 $55 $55 None $25 36 months Fees wavied for Gold members. See full details at BritishAirways.com
Delta SkyMiles SkyTeam $150 $150 $150 (must be completed 72 hours prior to departure) None $25 Miles do not expire Fees wavied for Platinum and Diamond Medallion members. See full details at Delta.com
El Al Matmid N/A $60 $60 – $125 $60 – $125 None $10 36 months Fees waived/reduced for Platinum and Top Platinum members. See full details at ElAl.com
Emirates Skywards N/A $25 $75 $75 None 36 months Fees waived for Platinum members. See full details at Emirates.com
Frontier Early Returns N/A Up to 8 days prior to departure = $0, within 8 days of departure = $75 $75 $75 None None 18 months Fees wavied for Summit members and Standard Awards. See full details at FlyFrontier.com
Hawaiian Airlines HawaiiMiles N/A $50 ($30 for interisland flights) $50 ($30 for interisland flights) $150 ($30 for interisland flights) None $25 18 months Interisland change fees waived for Pulani Platinum members. See full details at HawaiianAirlines.com
Iberia Plus Avios OneWorld €25 €25 €25 None 36 months
JetBlue True Blue N/A More than 60 days prior to departure = $75. Less than 60 days prior to departure = $75 for fares of $100 – $149, $150 for fares $150+ More than 60 days prior to departure = $75. Less than 60 days prior to departure = $75 for fares of $100 – $149, $150 for fares $150+ More than 60 days prior to departure = $75. Less than 60 days prior to departure = $75 for fares of $100 – $149, $150 for fares $150+ None $25 Miles do not expire. Fees waived for Mosaic level members. See full details at JetBlue.com
Korean SkyPass SkyTeam None None Within 1 year of ticket issue date = $0, if ticket was issued over 1 year = 10,000 miles None 5 years See full details at KoreanAir.com
LifeMiles Avianca / TACA Star Alliance $150 $150 $50 $25 fee for all bookings 24 months See full details at LifeMiles.com
Lufthansa Miles & More Star Alliance $60 $60 $60 None No fee 36 months Fees may be waived or reduced only for date and time changes. See full details at Miles-and-More.com
Gol Smiles N/A $40 to $50 36 months
Singapore KrisFlyer Star Alliance Singapore awards = $0, partner awards = $20,within 24 hours of departure = $75 Singapore awards =$12, partner = $20, within 24 hours of departure = $75 More than 24 hours prior to departure = $30 None $0 36 months See full details at SingaporeAir.com
Southwest RapidRewards N/A None None None None None 24 months N/A See details at Southwest.com
Spirit FreeSpirit N/A $110 $110 $110 $100 $25 3 months None See full details at Spirit.com
United MileagePlus Star Alliance More than 21 days prior to departure = $75, within 21 days of departure = $100 $200 $200 $75 $25 18 months All fees waived for Platinum, 1K, Global Services. Some fees waived for Silver, Gold, and United Club cardholders. See full details at United.com
US Airways Dividend Miles OneWorld $150 $150 $150 $75 (additional $25 to $50 processing fee) $30 to $40 18 months Fees waived for Chairmans members. Close-in booking fee waived for Gold / Platinum members. See full details at USAirways.com
Virgin Atlantic FlyingClub N/A More than 24 hours prior to departure =$50 More than 24 hours prior to departure =$50 More than 24 hours prior to departure =$50 None 36 months See full terms at VirginAtlantic.com
JAL OneWorld Free if reservation for new flight is confirmed before boarding. (Changes of flight number and date can be made through the JAL website by 12:00 4 days prior to the day of departure.) Changes not allowed to traveler’s name, flight sector, class of service, routing, or the direction of travel and exchange. “Mileage Reinstatement Service for Unused Awards” is applicable in case of cancellation of unused award tickets. Members are responsible for all the mailing costs of award tickets $21 36 months See full details at JAL.com
LAN OneWorld Fee varies from $35 – $75 depending on flight distance and days prior to departure. Fee varies from $35 – $75 depending on flight distance and days prior to departure. Fee varies from $40 – $125 depending on flight distance and days prior to departure. None Domestic flights = $15, International flights = $25 36 months See full details at LAN.com
Virgin America N/A $100 $100 $100 None $20 18 months Fees waived for Silver and Gold members. Full terms at VirginAmerica.com
Thai Airways Royal Orchid Star Alliance Flights within Thailand = $16, international flights = $40, Star Alliance Awards = $95 Flights within Thialand = $60 (International awards are not eligible) Regional awards = $120 or 10,000 miles, international awards = $190 or 15,000 miles None 36 months See full details at ThaiAirways.com
Categories: Alaska Airlines, American Airlines, Award fees, British Airways Avios, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

How I earned 723,000 miles and points in 2014 and where all did we travel

Where all did we travel in 2014?

I am glad to end 2014 on a very happy note . By implementing several strategies, credit card sign-up bonus and bonus miles via referral I was able to acquire more than 700,000 miles and points without flying.We used some of these miles and points to travel for almost free  to destinations like Washington D.C, Myrtle beach, Miami, NYC, Baltimore, Cancun and the highlight of this year was our 10 days Trip to Europe (Spain and France) which costed me barely  $500 (airfare+ lodging) for two people while flying business class on US Air (more details in next week posts) and staying at some top-notch five star hotels in the best of the locations. A one way-business class from North America to Europe itself  costs average $5000 per person for which I paid 50,000 miles and $15 in award fees . You could easily earn 50,000 US Airways miles by applying for the soon to be discontinued US Airways Premier World MasterCard

View from the revolving restaurant at Double Tree Crystal City we stayed in August 2014

US at The Eiffel Tower, Paris

Enjoying authentic delicacies in Madrid

Yum Yum Chocolate raspberry cake in business class of US Air travelling from Philadelphia – Madrid

Segwaying in Madrid with the Royal palace in background

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Enjoying drinking Bailey’s in US Air business class while watching Dawn of the planet of the Apes

 

Can I get one of everything please???? – Business Class US Airways

View from our beautiful suite at Le Meridien Barcelona right in the heart of La Ramblas

How I earned 723,000 miles and points in 2014?

The question you may ask – did you sign-up for like 20 credit cards? The answer is NO!!! Between my wife and I we signed up for a total of nine credit cards in 2014. As we also purchased a house I did not want a lot of hard inquiries before securing our most important investment and I also recommend you do not apply for any credit cards or loan applications at least six months leading into any home or car mortgage. Read more about it on my post on Credit 101. Here is a summary on how I earned all those miles –

Credit Card, Account or Spend Miles or Points Type Cost / Minimum Spend
Citi AA Executive Card X 2 (Expired now)

220,000

AA miles $450 account fees, $200 statement credit
United MileagePlus Explorer

55,000

United miles $1000 spend in 3 months, annual fee waived 1st year
Barclaycard Arrivalplus Mastercard x 2

88,000

Travel Credit of $880 $3000 spend in 3 months, annual fee waived 1st year
US Airways Premier World Mastercard x 2

100,000

US Airways miles After 1st purchase, no minimum
Starwood Preferred Guest Credit Card American Express

35,000

AA miles $3000 spend in 4 months, annual fee waived 1st year
Chase Ink Plus business card

55,000

UR points $5,000 spend in 3 months, annual fee waived 1st year
Chase Ink Plus Refer a friend promo

50,000

UR points None. I referred five friends who all got approved
British Airways VISA Signature

50,000+70,000+Free Companion Ticket

BA Avios $3000 spend in 3 months, 50 K bonus (after 20 k spend) and companion ticket after spending total of $30,000 in one calendar year, $95 annual fees not waived

The total comes out to be 723000 miles. I would have to circle the earth many a times  if all those miles were to be earned via flying. I also earned several thousand miles and points (not accounted above)  via shopping through online portals  my personal favorites being  the Ultimate Rewards mall and BarclayBoost.

Questions?

Would you like to earn over 500,000 miles in 2015? Don’t know how to redeem the miles to get best value? How to get upgraded to a suite? I’d love to show you how you can implement several strategies to get to your dream destination for real cheap. Follow my blog or drop me a line and I’d love to answer your questions and help you plan your next trip.

Bucket List – Mystique Hotel Santorini where a room typically costs $600/night I plan on staying for almost free in 2015.

Bucket List 2015- British Airways B777-300 First Class – Retail cost $10,000 per person round trip from IAD to most places in Europe. I plan to redeem 120,000 British Airways Avios along with the free companion ticket to travel in this beauty for pennies!!

Bucket List 2015 – Andaz Maui, Hawaii yet another top class hotel where you can easily score free nights

PS – I get commission from some of the links mentioned in the post here. You don’t have to but I am grateful if you plan to  use my referral link to sign up for any of these cards

Categories: British Airways Avios, Credit cards, Ultimate Rewards Points | Tags: , , , , , , | 3 Comments

DEAL ALERT – $44 American Airlines Flights from Chicago

Per the Flight Deal, American Airlines is running a fare sale with flights from Chicago to Orlando or Tampa starting at just $44 each way for travel in January and February.If you are interested in scoring any of these fares for $44, be sure to book sooner than later because typically, these fare sales usually sell out rather quickly. If you’re looking for an easy way to earn 2,000 elite qualifying miles for $80, then it could also be a quick easy mileage run for some.

Around the world AA 1

Around the world AA 2

These are valid for domestic, nonstop travel on: Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Saturdays, Jan. 6, 2014 through Feb. 11, 2015. If you are looking for a quick getaway down to Orlando or Tampa, then you may want to take a look at some of these deals.

Categories: American Airlines | Tags: , , , | 1 Comment

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