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Sound too good to be true? It’s not.
It just takes knowing where to look. Enter, Cathay Pacific’s Asia Miles program. Asia Miles is a great program that is mileage based ( meaning redemptions are based on how far you travel, not particularly which regions your traverse), has great routing rules, isn’t regularly talked about, and is where we’re going to highlight a sweet spot. Asia Miles has different award charts depending on which carriers you combine, and today we’ll work with their One-World Multi Carrier awards chart. It’s here that we’ll find the way to fly roundtrip in business to South America for 85k miles.
Asia Miles One World Multi-Carrier Awards chart
- 2 different airlines not including Cathay Pacific/Dragon
- 3 different airlines including Cathay Pacific/Dragon
- Max distance 50k
5 stopovers, two transfers, and two open-jaws.
These are incredibly generous routing rules and allow for some very creative trip construction. We won’t get into those today because we’re highlighting a very straight forward booking that capitalizes on a sweet spot.
What’s the chart look like?
How can we fly roundtrip from the US to South America for just 85k miles?
Both American and Latam offer direct business class flights from Miami to Buenos Aires, and last night I was searching avail and found a fair amount of availability. So it got me thinking about doing a #weekendwarrior trip and I started thinking how I could use my miles, but also maximize the miles of my friends to make it happen.
According to Milecalc.com Miami to Buenos Aires is just 8812 miles roundtrip.
If we bring back the above chart, we can see that this creates a great opportunity…
So we would have to book this roundtrip with 2 different airlines in order to qualify for the Multi-Carrier Award chart
and then to fly a different carrier on the way back…LATAM Business Class
Don’t have Asia Miles? You can Transfer to get them
- Amex is a 1:1 Partner
- Citi Thank You is a 1:1 Partner
- SPG is a 1:1 partner, and every 20k you transfer nets 25k Asia Miles.
*Last Year, Citi Thank You had a 20% bonus when transferring to Asia Miles which would drop this ticket down to just 71k Points. Unreal.
Don’t have Asia Miles? Here’s how you can buy them…roughly $1550/roundtrip
SPG is offering a 35% bonus on purchased points, bringing the per point rate down to 2.28cents a piece. Every 20k points you transfer to Asia miles nets 25k. That equates to buying Asia miles for 1.82 cents a piece. you need 85k….
Additional Ideas for your trip.
This idea revolves around using Miami are your starting point…Clearly, if you don’t live there you’d need to get there. Miami is a large hub with tons of deals in/out of it, so finding a cheap positioning flight shouldn’t be too difficult. But, let’s say, you aren’t looking for a quick weekend trip like me…say you want to visit the Iguazu Falls, add in routing from the States, or maybe even add in Brazil.
For 115k miles you could Visit Argentina, Iguazu Falls, and Rio in Business…Here’s how:
Adding in just the Iguazu Falls will bump you up to Award Zone 8. This means you’d need 115k miles for your trip. Still a steal, but that award zone gives you up to 14k miles to travel. If you have the time, you might as well see some more stuff…
Like staying at the iconic Belmond Hotel Das Cataratas
You could conceivably book tickets from Miami to Iguazu falls with a stopover in Buenos Aires. Asia Miles allows 5 Stopovers. Then your return from Iguazu Falls back to the States could route you via Rio. If you needed to fly back into JFK, you could do so, as Asia Miles allows 2 open jaws. Just 10,600 Miles – You still have 3400 miles left…
You trip could look like this then…
- MIA to EZE on AA 777-300ER in business class
- EZE to IGR on LATAM business
- IGR to GIG on LATAM Business
- GIG to JFK on AA 777-200
This would allow you to fly the longhauls on AA, which is better business class, and still qualify for the multi-partner award because your intermediate flights are on LATAM.