I am loath to post many mileage deals that appear to be mistakes on this blog because airlines do read blogs and respond quickly – I may not have the readership of The Points Guy, but it is no coincidence that shortly after I posted instructions on manually booking US Airways awards a fresh memo was circulated to US Airways forbidding them to long sell flights.
But in this case several blogs have already picked this up and there is some indication this is an intentional sale, so I am happy to talk about it as well in hopes that you will be able to take advantage of it.
Back in March when United devalued its award chart, it introduced a two-tiered pricing structure in which award flights on United’s partners required more miles than flying on United metal. In the case of Europe, United transatlantic flights were 57.5K one-way while all partner flights were 70K one-way.
Whether a technical glitch or a deliberate sale, all transatlantic flights in January 2015 and beyond are pricing at the 57.5K level, even on partners. Some are now reporting that miles are being deducted under a “Saver Sale” description in their MileagePlus accounts, so perhaps this is a genuine sale. If you are trying to travel this month, partner awards are still pricing at 70K each way between North America and Europe.
What this means is that a r/t business class trip to Europe drops from 140K to 115K r/t even if you are flying airlines like LOT, Austrian, Lufthansa, or Turkish for the longhaul flight.
Remember that Aeroplan, Air Canada’s spun-off frequent flyer program, offers round-trip business class tickets to Western Europe for 90K r/t and Eastern Europe for 105K r/t, but you are looking at fuel surcharges topping $800 if you fly carriers like Lufthansa or Austrian; fuel surcharges that United does not collect.
Take advantage of this deal – there is a lot of space in the winter and spring and even some next summer and fall if your travel plans are flexible. Let me know if I can help you with your trip.