US To Europe Discount Awards – 48k Coach, 40k Business or 35k Coach Round Trip

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Did you know United Coach Class to Europe at a 20% discount for 48,000 miles? Perhaps you’ve read about it. But did you know you can book a Business Class award for only 40,000 SPG Starpoints or redeem only 35,000 US Airways Dividend miles for a round trip Coach Class during low season?

These are great award flight options you should be familiar with.

I received an email form United yesterday that reminded me of a few different discount award options to Europe. I didn’t immediately blog about it yesterday because I was too busy playing bar games during my Delta flight in First Class on board a Delta 757 that was obtained through the acquisition of Northwest Airlines.

United Limited Time 20% Discount on Coach

United is offering a 20% discount on round trip Saver Awards in United Economy® for flights booked between November 6, 2012, and November 15, 2012 and for travel between January 15, 2013, and March 13, 2013. This knocks a round trip coach award from the U.S. to Europe down to only 48,000 United miles round trip from 60,000 miles round trip. You can read more about the details of this offer over at United.

Air France Low Season Discount Business And Coach

Air France / KLM offers a 50% discounted awards program. This means their Business Class awards from select cities in North America to Europe will only cost you 50,000 Flying Blue miles + fuel surcharges. In addition, Flying Blue offers the ability to redeem one-way awards which knock down this discounted price to only 25,000 Flying Blue miles for a one-way Business Class award.

  • Round Trip Discounted Coach Class – 25,000 Flying Blue Miles
  • Round Trip Discounted Business Class – 50,000 Flying Blue Miles

If you don’t have Flying Blue miles, you can transfer Starwood Starpoints or American Express Membership Rewards over to Flying Blue Miles. If you don’t have any Starwood Starpoints, check out this post for a way to get 50,000 Starpoints. Since Starwood Starpoints come with a 20% bonus when you transfer 20,000 Starpoints, you’ll have enough for a one-way Business Class award when you transfer only 20,000 Starpoints.

  • Round Trip Discounted Coach Class – 20,000 Starpoints Transfserred to Flying Blue Miles
  • Round Trip Discounted Business Class – 40,000 Starpoints Transfserred to Flying Blue Miles

Alternatively, you could sign up for an American Express credit card, and transfer American Express Membership rewards for a Business Class award to Europe.

  • Round Trip Discounted Coach Class – 25,000 American Express Membership Rewards Transfserred to Flying Blue Miles
  • Round Trip Discounted Business Class – 50,000 American Express Membership Rewards Transfserred to Flying Blue Miles

The flight from Washington DC to Paris, France is operated on of of Air France’s A380 double decker planes. You can read my review of the Business Class seat on the upper deck in my trip report here.

A one-way business class award to Europe for only 20,000 SPG points. Now that is a deal! You can review the latest Air France / KLM 50% discounted award flights on the Flying Blue promotion page.

British Airways Boston To Ireland In Coach

You can redeem British Airways Avios for a round trip Air Lingus flight in Coach Class from Boston to Ireland for only 25,000 in coach for only $146.28 in taxes and fees. You can read more about British Airways awards through their Executive Club website.

US Airways Off-Peak Discounted Coach And Business Awards

If you can fly to Europe on non-peak times and have US Airways miles, you can fly to Europe for only 35,000 in Coach or 60,000 in Business Class. This is a great reason to stock up on US Airways miles during their 100% bonus for purchased or 100% bonus for shared miles. You can currently fly to Europe from the U.S. for the discounted price between January 15, 2013 and February 28, 2013. You can read more about the US Airways off-peak awards on their website.

Bottom Line

In my opinion, the Air France 50% discounted awards are the best deal since sliced bread.

By remaining flexible with the time you visit Europe, and having points in multiple programs that offer discounts, you can save big on award travel from the U.S. to Europe in Coach or Business Class.

Are there any other great deals out there at the moment?

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About The Weekly Flyer

The Weekly Flyer writes about travel from a business traveler perspective. He travels the world every week accumulating points and miles along the way.

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  1. Good recap of some possibilities, but while I know you need to promote card links, there are some negatives and considerations you’re not mentioning that are very important:

    – You should point out that AF redemptions with their 50% off deals still incur huge fuel surcharges that just about negate all of the mileage value for coach – and diminish the value for Business class awards, too.

    – For the AMEX Business Gold card, though you call it a signup bonus, it’s an initial spend bonus requiring a hefty $5,000 spend within the first 3 months.

    – How do you consider the dual SPG AMEX route to be a “quick way” to get 50K SPG? It requires a combined spend (for personal & business cards) of $10,000 (within 6 months) to get the full points! Sure there are ways to artificially boost spending, but that’s a whole ‘nother subject and not for everyone.

    – USAirways off-peak awards are a good deal, though they sell out very quickly IME, so plan ahead.

    – Note that the specific city pairs that are discounted on the 50% off AF deal rotate (I think quarterly?).

  2. Hi Ryan – Good points and by no means was I attempting to not mention information on the points you mentioned.

    (1) Added “+fuel surcharges”, but I’d go on to say, if pressed, that they don’t always negate the savings in points or benefit of the award gained, it depends is probably the right answer.
    (2) Suggested considering the offer page, where the offer detailed are included.
    (3) Changed to say “way”, but in reality, it can be a really quick way for many business frequent flyers without “artificially” bosting spending.
    (4) Agree, people should just be aware this option exists. To each his own for tracking down award availability and timing to snag an award. Just good to highlight the option exists as many people don’t know about it.
    (5) Clearly reference the AF / KLM 50% promotion site for more information and state “select” cities.

    Thanks for reading Points, Miles & Martinis.

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