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Booking Award Tickets
I am an avid follower of One Mile at a Time and thank you for tips, suggestions and guidance when it comes to travel. For years my husband and I have been traveling to Greece and throughout Europe, thanks to your guidance on how to accrue frequent flier miles through flying certain routes and carriers, and through the judicious use of a family of credit cards. One Mile at a Time advice on how to maximize booking awards has always been valuable as well.
Like many of your readers, we are hoping to travel this year and are in the planning phases for a return to Greece, and hopefully a visit to Paris on the way home. We easily have 300,000 miles in Chase Ultimate Rewards and Citi Thank You Rewards and thought this might be the year we travel to Athens via Newark on Emirates Fifth-Freedom route. When I recently looked for First Class awards on the outbound flight, it would appear that I can book one First Class ticket for 85,000 miles for travel in mid-May. If I look for 2 First Class tickets, however, I get a message that First Class is not available, but 2 Business Class award tickets for 125,000 are. That scenario occurred for a variety of dates in May, so I wasn’t sure if there was a glitch in the system or if only one First Class award ticket was actually available on each of these flights. I thought I might try to book a single First Class ticket using 85,000 miles, then try to book a second First Class ticket for 85,000 on the same flight. However, if this doesn’t work, I’ve committed lots of Chase and CitiBank miles to my Emirates account.
Can you offer any guidance or insight? Thank you!
It is unlikely to be a glitch, but rather that there is only 1 award seat available. You could call them to double check the dates that you want.
I would definitely not transfer 85k miles to book one seat, hoping for another one to open if you want to travel on the same flight. There seems to be decent availability in business class for 2, though!
You could always snag the one First that is available now, and purchase one Biz as well. Then just keep an eye open (or use Expert Flyer for an alert – if EF has award availability for Emirates) for a second award for First to open closer to the date. No guarantee of course, and if it doesn’t come through you are seated apart from one another.