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Let me first thank you for all the tips, tricks and knowledge you provide. A little background, my wife and I are very frequent business travelers on United. We have taken several trips through the power of miles, but for the most part they have been pretty straight forward round trip itineraries. With the upcoming changes to United we decided to get a little more creative with our planning, and we have booked a pretty interesting trip that I just had to share.
We originally started to look at an around the world trip, but found the Asia portions of the award tickets were quite a bit more expensive and the times became very inconvenient with some of the other destinations we were choosing. So, we decided to go almost halfway and back. The itinerary we created became such a beast that we ended up splitting it into two separate itineraries to hopefully take advantage of the current rules better. Not really sure if we took advantage of the current rules vs the new ones on United, but we’re very happy with the perceived value we managed. So let me get into what we booked
Portland, ME to Lisbon
Lisbon to Prague
Prague to Tel Aviv
This Itinerary was booked all in economy class for a cost of 55K miles per person. We will be staying in each city for at least a few days. We had no issue sacrificing business for these prices, and on the relatively short flights. We also made sure to book a 767 for the transatlantic portion, so we would be able to take the two seats together without neighbors.
Tel Aviv to Male
Male to Athens
Athens to Boston, MA
This itinerary was booked all in business class for a cost of 115K miles per person. Again, we will be staying in each destination for several days.
These itineraries obviously do not include connections. We managed to do this trip without any overnight connections, so lodging will only be required in the actual cities we have selected.
All together the trip looks like this
For a total of 170K miles each. We went back and attempted to price the tickets out of curiosity. We weren’t able to pick the exact flights when we went back, but similar flights priced out at well over $20K. Even on the low end of the estimate we were able to get a redemption rate of around $0.12 per mile.
Again, not sure how much we actually took advantage of the old United rules as opposed to just being flexible, but it seems as though we were able to maximize our miles on this trip. We know this is old hat for you, but curious to hear your opinion on this megatrip.