Chart of Frequent Flyer Programs That Offer Lower Redemption Levels

Not all frequent flyer programs charge the same amount for a trip (you probably knew that). So I thought I’d start off the week with a chart of when you can save miles by using a different frequent flyer program to redeem miles for a flight. In other words, if you want to take a trip on Continental, is there a different program you should be using to actually redeem those miles?

In the chart below, I did not include any deals where you get charged a fuel surcharge, as paying $550 to save 10,000 miles seems silly. And, while this may not be fair, I’ve found LAN’s customer service (especially over the phone) is be so frustrating that I didn’t include them here, even though some of their mileage-based redemptions can be a good deal.

Let me know if there are any I’ve missed.

AWARD MILES REQUIRED CHEAPER ALTERNATIVE HOW TO GET THOSE MILES
Delta, from US to Europe in coach 60,000 Miles Flying Blue (KLM/Air France) - 50,000 Miles
OR
Hawaiian Airlines - 55,000 Miles
Flying Blue: Transfer from Starwood or Membership Rewards (25% bonus through Feb 29, 2012)

Hawaiian: Starwood or Membership Rewards transfer; or credit cards
Delta, from US to Southern South America in coach 60,000 Miles Hawaiian Airlines, 50,000 Miles Starwood or Membership Rewards transfer; or credit cards
Continental or United, from US to Africa 80,000 Miles US Airways, 70,000 Miles Transfer from Starwood
Continental or United from US to Australia, in Business Class 135,000 Miles US Airways, 110,000 Miles Transfer from Starwood
Continental or United from US to Africa, in Business Class 120,000 Miles US Airways, 110,000 Miles Transfer from Starwood
Continental or United from US to North Asia, in Coach and Business Class 65,000 Miles in coach; 120,000 Miles in business US Airways, 60k in coach; 90k in business Transfer from Starwood
American, from JFK or Miami to Caribbean 25,000/35,000 offpeak/peak British Airways (Avios):
JFK: 20k
Miami: 15k
Transfer from Membership Rewards, Starwood or Chase Ultimate Rewards
American, short-haul domestic 25,000 Miles British Airways, 9,000 Miles Transfer from Membership Rewards, Starwood or Chase Ultimate Rewards
American, from JFK or Miami to Central America 30,000/35,000 offpeak/peak British Airways
JFK: 20k
Miami: 15k
Transfer from Membership Rewards, Starwood or Chase Ultimate Rewards
American, from Los Angeles to Hawaii 35,000/45,000 offpeak/peak British Airways, 25k Transfer from Membership Rewards, Starwood or Chase Ultimate Rewards
Hawaiian Airlines, inter-island 15,000 Miles Most other airlines that partner with Hawaiian (Continental, United, US Airways, Delta), all 10,000 Miles (Virgin Atlantic used to be 6,000 -- not anymore, unfortunately)
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2 Comments.

  1. Jared,

    It was just recently reported on FT that the VS award for HA inter-island has been raised to 15k. I have not tested this but they have removed reference to the 6k from the website.

    Also, I believe the west coast to Hawaii awards (also on AS) using Avios are a minimum of 25k RT.

    • Isaac – Thanks for that. 20k was a typo, now fixed.

      That is a big bummer about Virgin Atlantic. Thanks for letting me know.

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