As far as I’m concerned, American AAdvantage miles are one of the most valuable mileage currencies out there. Ironically enough, they’re valuable in spite of the fact that they’re sort of tough to redeem to Europe (which is one of the most popular international destinations people want to redeem miles for). I love redeeming American miles for travel to Asia (on Cathay Pacific and Japan Airlines) and for travel to the Middle East (on Etihad and Qatar), though getting to Europe isn’t always a good deal:
- American’s main transatlantic partner is British Airways, and they impose huge carrier imposed surcharges on award tickets; a roundtrip business class award to Europe on British Airways will cost you $1,000+
- American partners with airberlin, Finnair, and Iberia, though none are especially generous when it comes to releasing many premium cabin award seats
- American also partners with Air Tahiti Nui (which flies Los Angeles to Paris) and Jet Airways (which flies from Newark and Toronto to Brussels), which sometimes has a couple of seats available, though rarely more than that
- American is generally abysmal about making premium cabin awards available on their own flights to Europe, even when cabins are wide open
With that in mind, last week View from the Wing noted something which is still the case (much to my surprise).
At the moment American has tons of business class award availability for travel next summer between the US and Europe. Tons. Including for flights on their new product. This is extremely rare, and worth jumping on:
- American’s 777-300ERs arguably have one of the best business class hard products in the world, so it’s a fantastic way to fly from the US to Europe
- American doesn’t impose fuel surcharges for awards on their own flights
- American AAdvantage charges just 50,000 miles for one-way business class between the US and Europe, which is among the lowest rate in the industry
- There’s even tons of business class award availability between Los Angeles and London; ordinarily finding nonstop business class award availability between the west coast and Europe is extremely difficult
- We’re not just talking about one or two business class award seats per flight, but rather at least seven business class award seats per flight
Just to give an example, American has at least seven business class award seats available per flight between Los Angeles and London for many dates next summer.
This is available from Los Angeles to London:
As well as from London and Los Angeles:
Roughly half of the dates next summer have availability, which is pretty freaking awesome. As luck would have it, most of the dates with availability are Thursdays through Sundays, which also happen to be peak days of the week for transatlantic travel.
This amount of award space isn’t limited to that route, though I thought the Los Angeles route was most noteworthy, since it’s usually one of the toughest routes in the system on which to snag an award or upgrade.
Space is also excellent from Charlotte to London:
From Miami to London:
From New York to London:
And for that matter from most other gateways American flies from.
If you’re looking to upgrade, the good news is that upgrade space seems to match award space. In other words, you can confirm an upgrade instead of booking an award, if you’d like. If you’re an Executive Platinum member, that’s a fantastic use of a systemwide upgrade.
I can’t emphasize enough how rare this amount of business class award availability on American is. It has been a long time since I’ve seen availability this good.
Redeeming 50,000 AAdvantage miles for one-way travel between the US and Europe in American’s new business class product without fuel surcharges is an absolute bargain. And when there’s availability for the whole family on a single flight, it’s even better.
American’s 777-300ER business class seat
If you have American miles and are looking at traveling to Europe next summer, take advantage of this as soon as possible.
Keep in mind that American allows five day award holds, so you can always hold now and finalize in a few days, as this space likely won’t last.
Have you taken advantage of this plentiful award availability yet, or do you plan to?