It’s possible to fly to Europe for only 36,000 miles, round-trip, in Business Class, which is one of the best possible rates you can find.
There are two essential things to understand:
- American Express Membership Rewards transfer to British Airways Avios with a 40% bonus now through January 31, 2015.
- You can book Aer Lingus Business Class from Boston to Dublin for 50,000 Avios round-trip, per-person, in Business Class
British Airways award chart is distance based, and the shortest distance between a major US city and Europe occurs from Boston to Dublin, whereby it is 25,000 Avios one-way in Business Class. Because British Airways does not fly the route, they partner with Aer Lingus to offer service.
Round-trip is 50,000 miles (ordinarily, you’d find most Business Class fares to Europe from the US in the 100,000+ mile range). So, taking into account the transfer bonus to Avios from Membership Rewards. Transferring in 36,000 points, offers a bonus of 14,400, which puts you over the necessary 50,000 miles required for this trip.
So, what if you don’t want to fly to Dublin? Don’t let that stop you. From Dublin, you can take a low cost carrier to pretty much any European city, and because flights from there are generally short, it will be cheap to fly economy, or redeem miles for a coach flight. The bulk of your time over the water will be in Business Class, which is the important part.
What if I don’t live in Boston? Boston is accessible throughout the Northeast Corridor, either by Amtrak, or by purchasing a cash ticket to it. Find a cheap cash ticket to Boston, and you’re all set to fly out from there.
The best way to search for Aer Lingus availability is not via the British Airways website, but rather via United.com. While availability can change, it provides a pretty accurate picture of what is there. Alternatively, if you have an ExpertFlyer subscription, you can search for full availability there.
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