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I was doing some searches for award bookings and came across phantom award space on Etihad. Specifically it appears to be showing up on routes in and out of the Maldives. Etihad is a great airline and one that I’ve flown two of their business class products: Business Studio and Pearl Business. In case you missed it I wrote an article highlighting the 7 reasons why Etihad’s Business Studio is the best $7 I’ve ever spent.
If you aren’t familiar with Etihad award bookings they are a great use of American miles and you can learn about how to find space in this article I wrote last year.
As you can see here it shows Etihad Guest Seat space ( You can use AA miles ) from the Maldives to San Francisco with a stop in Abu Dhabi
I thought I’d found a ticket and was excited to provide a client with a great product.
However, after calling AA to make sure the availability was there they said they couldn’t find the award avail.
Upon further inspection I found that the space wasn’t available if you broke the legs up.
Here you can see that separating the itinerary into parts shows that one leg isn’t available. It seems that there is some problem with the website showing phantom space when legs are combined; however, when the legs are separated the true award inventory is revealed.
Double checking inventory will save you time and frustrations.
I’d seen phantom space show up before, but this seems to be pretty consistent now with the routing. I haven’t checked a lot of other routes to see if there is phantom space showing elsewhere, but just a precaution I would advise breaking the itineraries up before calling.
Etihad is a great airline and I would highly recommend flying them.
Their products are phenomenal and they provide some interesting opportunities if you’re planning a trip to the Holy Land, or you’d like to see the U.A.E. – even if you’re looking to go to Australia from Europe.
I loved their Business Studio and so did Miles. You can fly the same product on the A380 as I did on the 787 when we took the Around the World trip last year. The U.A.E. was a very cool addition to our trip en route to Africa. I would note that we had to book two separate tickets as the routing was not allowed by AA on a single ticket.
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