American Can Once Again Book All Etihad Awards

Filed Under: American, Awards

On Tuesday I wrote about how some Etihad Airways awards didn’t seem bookable with American AAdvantage miles, which was very unfortunate timing given that Etihad recently started making First Class Apartment award space available from Abu Dhabi to London and from Abu Dhabi to Sydney.


In the middle of last year, there was a glitch whereby American AAdvantage couldn’t see Etihad award availability, and it took almost a month before that was fixed. I was hoping this wasn’t a repeat of that saga. Though more than anything I was a bit concerned by the fact that only some routes were being blocked, which suggested to me that it wasn’t an IT issue, but rather something more intentional.

Anyway, the good news is that whatever the problem was, it seems to have been fixed. All Etihad Airways flights are once again bookable using American AAdvatange miles.

As a reminder, here’s a primer on searching Etihad award availability, which should be bookable through AAdvantage.

Happy booking!

  1. Ben–

    If I basically want to fly LHR to AUH in a First Apartment (as opposed to the other direction), is there a way book it in conjunction an AA flight into LHR (with a less than 24-hour layover) and avoid the “premium cabin tax”?

  2. @ jmd001 — Sure, as long as you book it on a single ticket and your layover is less than 24 hours, you avoid the UK Air Passenger Duty. Otherwise just originating somewhere else in Europe would do the trick as well.

  3. I noticed South Pacific to Asia 2 is 45K in first on OW. I take it you are not allowed to route through AUH on this?

  4. Any further word as to when AUH-JFK will be operated by the A380? I’ve got two first class seats booked on that route in early December and I am keeping my fingers crossed.


  5. @ Eric — Haven’t heard anything further. Hopefully it’ll still be 2015, but it’s anyone’s guess!

  6. Hi Ben:

    I never thought AA or EY is blocking the award like what is happening between AS and EK at the moment. AS is a much smaller airline and it’s strategic importance to EK is small, whereas AA is much bigger airline that covers almost every city in the US, it would be unwise for EY not to partner with AA.

    On the side note, the similar IT glitch with Lifemiles(LM) has not been fixed yet, and I doubt if LM would bother to fix it at all. Remember I mentioned to you earlier about all transit in SE Asia to and from AUS is completely blocked online despite award availability if you search the segments separately. LM is happy to book it manually so obviously it is not against their routing rules. But as we all know the customer service of LM is like and there have been inconsistent experiences of trying to book it manually, with many that have lost award spaces while waiting for LM to respond.

    As TG and SQ are the only major star alliance airlines that service Australia with reasonable award spaces, the inability to transit in SE Asia online is making an already hard to redeem award to/fro AUS nearly impossible!

    Perhaps if someone influential like you contacted LM, they might actually bother to fix the glitch so we don’t have to deal with their customer service?

  7. Hi Ben: So I tried to book a CX flight I found on the BA site. I called AA to book and was told although I can see availability on BA (5 seats) AA is allocated separate slots so have only 1 seat left??? I suspect this is BS…

  8. @ Lucky — thanks for the heads up! Put AUH-LHR in EY F and *sigh* LHR-IAH in BA Y on hold (40,000 + 20,000+ ~$300). If LHR-IAH in J or Y becomes available, can I pay a difference in miles (+7,500 for J / +30,000 for F) & taxes and would that incur a change fee from AA?

  9. @ Lucky — Err… Had a brain freeze. I guess if it’s EY F + BA/AA then it will be 90,000 (40,000 + 50,000) and EY F + BA/AA F will price out at 90,000 as well (instead of 40,000+62,500 if booked separately). And the AAgent confirmed that there’s no fee for changing class.

  10. Is it true that even as an Exec Plat on AA, booking an Etihad ticket for someone else incurs a $35 phone fee? Is there anyway around this? (This is what the phone agent just told me. I asked her to check, she did but said it cannot be waved because Etihad is not a OneWorld airline.)

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