HURRY: Book Swiss First Class Awards Using Star Alliance Miles

Filed Under: Awards, Swiss

This certainly won’t last! Per Live and Let’s Fly, at the moment Swiss first class awards are bookable using Star Alliance partner miles. This is significant because ordinarily Swiss first class is only available for elite members of the Miles & More program, so this is a spectacular opportunity. Up until 2013 Swiss first class awards were wide open to members of partner programs, though at that point they really restricted it. There was a brief moment last June when Swiss first class was bookable using partner airline miles, though we haven’t seen this happen since then.

You can redeem just 70,000 Aeroplan miles for a one-way first class booking between the US and Europe, and best of all, there are no surcharges on such a booking. Alternatively you could redeem 110,000 United MileagePlus miles.

Some Amex Membership Rewards accounts are even targeted for a 20% transfer bonus to Aeroplan, which could make this an even better deal. This certainly won’t last, so if you’re interested you’ll want to book ASAP. I see availability out of most North American gateways, including Chicago, Los Angeles, Montreal, New York, and San Francisco. Scoring a nonstop first class award from the west coast to Europe is pretty awesome.

Here’s my review of Swiss first class between Zurich and Los Angeles.

  1. Am I the only one who doesn’t understand the hype? I agree at 70K AC miles and no fuel surcharges to Europe, it’s a great value and/or a logical routing to many other destinations, but it’s far from the only airline that fits that description.

  2. @ IZ — I see no reason it wouldn’t be, though you’ll want to call them to verify before transferring any miles. Their terms do technically state you can’t redeem for Swiss first class, but I suspect that’s because Swiss never makes space available, rather than some restriction in their system.

  3. Thanks for the tip! Was able to book FRA-ZRH-SFO. Will l get FCT access in FRA since I’m connecting from LH J to LX F, same day?

  4. @ Becky — Even if it weren’t a great product, this is almost the only first class product you can book in advance right now without fuel surcharges between the US and Europe at the saver level (I’m excluding United, because, well, that’s not really first class). Nevermind the fact that Swiss has a great product. Also, the Swiss first class lounge is phenomenal, and hard to otherwise access.

  5. Just got 1x for Sunday in June-2018: LHR-ZRH-SFO with 4 hour layover in ZRH to check out Swiss First lounge. 70k aeroplan and $240 USD in taxes…. Excited

  6. Just booked BKK-BOM-ZRH-MIA for 107,500 and $110 CAD in taxes for March 2018 with a 3.5 hour layover in ZRH.

    Thanks Lucky! I just wish one of the segments was on a 777-300ER

  7. My Aeroplan account elapsed due to no activity. Do I have to create a new account to search for award flights? Is this deal good for flights next summer?

  8. Lucky – if availability is showing on Aeroplan and not ANA or United, does that mean it’s most likely phantom space?

  9. @ mangoceviche — Often that’s the case, but here I don’t necessarily think so. Given that this space seems to have just recently appeared, different systems get access to the space at different times. Often United gets access to space after Aeroplan, for example (or at least that’s how it shows online). What’s concerning to me is that it doesn’t show on ANA, since I find that they’re usually first to see things. So it could very well be phantom, but no guarantees.

  10. just upgraded my one way March 13th to geneva from biz to first thank you so much never thought that day would come!!!!!!!

  11. Do we think if we initiated a SPG points transfer to Aeroplan today that the deal would still be live based on past experience? I can do it now but my partner will have to transfer and I don’t wanna be stuck with just me going in F while he’s stranded in *shudder* Swiss Business class.

  12. I have a previously booked flight that I used aeroplan to book. Do I upgrade through aeroplan or Swiss?

  13. I made a booking from BOM – JFK for Dec 2017 that showed on Aeroplan, but not on United. It was ticketed, can view it on the Swiss website and selected seats etc.

  14. Thanks so much for the heads up! Just booked GVA->JFK. We’ve only flown intl biz twice and never first so this should be great experience.

    Had been looking for return from trip to Nice in the summer and was looking hard at swiss business class… so doing first is a no brainer at 117K Amex miles for my wife and I (at 1.2x targeted bonus).

  15. KF agent could not see any F availability from their side, it is showing availability on Aeroplan. Anyone knows which country has more competent KF agent? 🙁

  16. Miles-and-More itselfs shows First-class award availability for SWISS (85’000 miles) , which I’ve never seen before!

  17. @ IZ — It could very well be that they just don’t have access to the space for whatever reason. Maybe they actually block LX F redemptions since they know they’re not usually possible. It might just not be bookable with KrisFlyer… sorry!

  18. Just upgraded an existing ZRH-LAX from Biz to First using 15’000 more Aeroplan miles. Great deal. Thanks Ben!

  19. @KM

    They operate 2 flights per day and the 777 rotates in 1 frequency every 2 days. Unfortunately im on the A330 on a day when the 777 isnt flying to MIA at all. Unless something changes between now and March ill live on the A330 Swiss First class

  20. @ Anthony Postiglione — On Aeroplan’s website? They make you search business and first together, and if first is available it will automatically show at the higher price.

  21. @lucky im currently booked on award ticket through United on Business class to Zurich. Looks like Aeroplan isn’t showing First availability.

    Does Swiss work similar to Lufthansa in terms of First Class award seats opening up about 2 weeks prior to travel date? That’s happened to me twice this year but curious if Swiss is the same.

  22. I’m confirmed and ticketed in F for ORD-ZRH-CPH, returning FRA-ZRH-ORD. I accepted an economy redemption for FRA-ZRH. If I’m correct, my same day SWISS-F ticket gets me into the FCT, but since it’s not possible to reserve an economy seat on an LH award booking, I’ll probably get personally driven to seat 30E on the Lufthansa A320.

  23. @Ben – what are the chances of having someone fly the same route! I just booked ORD-ZRH-CPH in first as well. What month are you going? We’re going in Sept 🙂

  24. Scandinavian based traveler here. I called SAS EuroBonus and they cannot see any Swiss F availability, tried several days and destinations.

    Enjoy those of you who gets in on this one!

  25. @lucky thanks…not coming up anymore. EWR-GENEVA was there for a second but disappeared. Same thing happened when I called

  26. Too bad my vacation travel plans for next year are already set. Thought about pulling a random one but decided against it for the time being. Seems like Swiss releases availability “by glitch” once a year – hopefully next year will be there again!

  27. Thanks for this! I booked YUL-ZRH-PVG-ZRH-YUL!

    Haven’t flown in LX F for years! Looking forward to it.

    By the way, what’s the difference between the LXF F in the 333 and the 777? On FT, they say the 777 is better.

  28. Thanks Ben. Booked a flight from Paris to Chicago in F throght Aeroplan next summer. My 88 year old mom will love Swiss F!

  29. booked 3 tickets! With my paid flights, I’m going to be flying 8 segments in F in a 3 month span, woohoo!

  30. Hi guys,

    This is SO phenomenal. I booked this morning — two tix in F for JFK-ZRH-MXP for next July. It ticketed and I also selected my seat on Swiss already.

    Never thought I’d get this redemption — we also chose a 4.5 hour layover to enjoy the lounge.

    I agree with @Lucky, not sure how they could get out of refusing this redemption.

  31. I got one last night. I noticed it was wide open for many dates, so it must have been some error. 70K miles 70 CAD ZRH>SFO. My wife and child don’t have a ticket yet, oops 🙂 They flew business enough times

  32. You are the best Ben! Booked YUL – ZRH – CDG return as da missus loves CDG in spring . A perfect 8 days mini getaway on the best FC I have yet to try on *A to date.

  33. FYI, they still show as ticketed on aeroplan but says the booking was deleted. I will have to call aeroplan…

  34. I remember years ago the same thing happended with SG F tickets that SG cancelled. Aeroplan was forced to honnor the tickets, but I’m not sure if that applies to everyone as Quebec has consumer protection laws…and my memory might not be servinig me well….

  35. Update: Refund taxes & fees back to my credit card account shown as “credit pending”. Miles back in my aeroplan account an hour ago.

    @ 7am (CST) miles back in the Aeroplan account, called Aeroplan the agent said the reservation has been cancelled (was told to call HQ on Monday) Also called LX, it was cancelled from Air Canada.

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