Hey! I have about 65,000 FFMs with US Airways and I'm looking to get a flight from Europe (London or Paris) to Cape Town, South Africa, this December. Does anyone know how to check frequent flyer seat availability online? Has anyone used their FFMs (with US Airways/United/another Star Alliance member) to purchase a flight to Africa? Is there a lot of availability usually?
I'm so confused! Thanks!
Usually to claim FFM's you have to contact the company. As these seats are limited and there's probably an overly complicated system behind it (as with most airlines for most seats), the person on the other end of the phone usually has a better insight into what is or isn't possible...
I've claimed a few flights through FFM's before. It's a bit of hassle getting sorted, but you can't beat the 'price'
From what I can remember of the Air Canada/Star Alliance frequent flyer manual (I edited that dang thing a zillion times - but have a memory like swiss cheese!), each airline offers flying/destination options that incorporate the airlines you need within their global alliance.
For example, Aeroplan provides their members with information on how to claim flights within Brazil aboard VARIG, say, because VARIG is part of the Star Alliance. So I'm sure any member airline within the Star Alliance can provide you with ways to book an FF flight from any destination to any other destination offered within the global alliance.
Check out Star Alliance, too - they may have a section that'll tell you more.
Forgot doing it on-line, too much trouble. Just call the rewards line for US Air.
I tried booking to Africa on Star Alliance, but ended up having to ditch the effort because they didn't fly to Tanzania (the closest they got was Ethopia).
At first I tried on-line, but the on-line router was coming up with BIZZARE flight schedules - flying me from Toronto to Sao Paolo, then to Germany, then to Ethophia, and on the way back flying me from Ethopia to Germany, to Japan and then to Canada. WHAT?
The rewards desk, on the other hand, is good at figuring out the best routing, and then playing around with the dates so that you can see when you can fly (in the event your first choice isn't available).
And, if you want to fly on the weekend, your first choice is probably not going to be available. For reward tickets, think about flying weekdays.