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Old Jul 27, 11, 1:40 pm   #1
 
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Using BA miles for SFO -> BOM

Hello Travel gurus
This is my first post here, hope to contribute as much as I can.
I have over 100K+ miles from British Airways (the Chase Visa BA card) and was looking for the best way to use them.
I want to eventually travel to Mumbai (BOM) this Dec, so I tried looking for reward flights on the BA website from SFO-> BOM. Problem is they don't have suitable dates and for Nov it was 90K miles + $570 per person.
I don't mind traveling via another country (e.g. France or any other Asian country) as long as it is a good use of the miles. Also, if the miles get me from SFO -> blah, then I could just buy a cheap ticket from blah -> BOM, provided it makes sense.

Sorry for the complicated question, but just wanted wanted your feedback on reward travel for this sector with British airways.

thanks in advance
-- SJ
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Old Jul 27, 11, 1:48 pm   #2
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sushshants View Post
Hello Travel gurus
This is my first post here, hope to contribute as much as I can.
I have over 100K+ miles from British Airways (the Chase Visa BA card) and was looking for the best way to use them.
I want to eventually travel to Mumbai (BOM) this Dec, so I tried looking for reward flights on the BA website from SFO-> BOM. Problem is they don't have suitable dates and for Nov it was 90K miles + $570 per person.
I don't mind traveling via another country (e.g. France or any other Asian country) as long as it is a good use of the miles. Also, if the miles get me from SFO -> blah, then I could just buy a cheap ticket from blah -> BOM, provided it makes sense.

Sorry for the complicated question, but just wanted wanted your feedback on reward travel for this sector with British airways.

thanks in advance
-- SJ
Welcome to FT Sushshants.

The BA forum is a mind of useful information (read the sticky at the top), and helpful posters.

Just don't mention you got the miles from Chase or complain about the fees

P.S it helps if you do a bit more experimenting with dummy bookings and get to a more specific question, rather than just asking people to do all the work for you

It helps if you look at some partner airlines, which will help you avoid fees. Going via London is not a good idea in this regard.
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Old Jul 27, 11, 2:07 pm   #3
 
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i was also looking at various options to use BA miles.They have some ridiculous rules with regards to redeeming miles.Like high fee on reward tickets,etc.
however, there are some good options for you.you can try using cathay from sfo-hkg-bom.fees would come to around $300.
the other option is to get to a domestic gateway and get hold of royal jordanian airlines.fee in that case would be around $40.
because if you use american airlines or any other combo, (avoiding BA because of high fee), to get to jordanian airlines gateway, BA doubles the miles used to redeem.(using 2 partners other than BA).
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Old Jul 27, 11, 2:20 pm   #4
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I think you'll get more help on the BAEC forum. Cheers!
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Old Jul 27, 11, 3:40 pm   #5
 
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Thanks for all your replies. I called BA Exec Club to look for options for SFO to BOM.
@mrahul - You are right that Cathay pacific and Royal Jordanian are two options. The cust svc rep. told me that there were no award tickets on Cathay for all of Dec. There was something available for Nov (depart from SFO) and Dec (arrive in SFO) but it requires 40K miles + $300(approx) for each way, totaling to 80K miles + $700 for the two one-way trips.
I'm not sure if this would be any different if a single round-trip ticket was booked -- what do you think ?
Also, according to him RJ did not have any seats for award travel.

American Airlines is not an option since they don't fly to India -- their last leg is operated by Jet Airways which is not part of OneWorld alliance.
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Old Jul 27, 11, 4:05 pm   #6
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Book WT+ and upgrade to Club (best value) or use points and cash SFO-LHR-BOM.
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Old Jul 27, 11, 5:45 pm   #7
 
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@ffI: Points + cash for SFO-> LHR-> BOM roundtrip are 90K miles + $570. I used to think that flying via LHR would cost more due to taxes etc, but looking at the fees for booking a Cathay reward travel flight it doesn't seem like that is true. What is your opinion ? The no of miles required for flying via LHR was an extra 10K as compared to Cathay but that is not a big deal, especially when the extra cost was actually lower !

Do you need more miles to get a WorldTraveler or WT+ ticket ? I don't see these options on the BA website -- its just economy, premium economy, business and first. What is special about WT or WT+ ?
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Old Jul 27, 11, 5:58 pm   #8
 
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There's a good beginner's tutorial at this blog:

http://thepointsguy.com/2011/04/how-...-miles-post-1/

Maybe look into a trans-pacific flight on a partner air line.
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Old Jul 27, 11, 11:30 pm   #9
 
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you could go from sfo-ord-del in AA and then fly from del-bom by jet.that way, it would be cheaper in terms of fee.however, royal jordanian airlines seems to be the cheapest option if you are trying to avoid the fee.
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Old Jul 27, 11, 11:31 pm   #10
 
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WT is regular economy.WT+ is premium economy, which has more legroom.
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Old Jul 27, 11, 11:41 pm   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mrahul
you could go from sfo-ord-del in AA and then fly from del-bom by jet.that way, it would be cheaper in terms of fee.however, royal jordanian airlines seems to be the cheapest option if you are trying to avoid the fee.
I thought that BA redemptions for TATL travel on RJ came with the same high fuel surcharges that BA assesses on other oneworld carriers. No?
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Old Jul 27, 11, 11:44 pm   #12
 
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@sushshants

Actually Jet Airways is an option if you have AA miles. I also recently found out that the fees are similar for flying coach from SFO-BOM regardless of where you fly BA or CX metal using BA miles.

So I decided to go with my AA miles instead. The CSR was able to get me two itineraries,

Option 1) SFO-JFK-Brussels (on AA metal) and Brussels-BOM with Jet Airways
40000 miles one way.
Fees slightly over a 100 (for the roundtrip; I did not price fees for one way)

and

Option 2) SFO-ORD-Amman (on AA metal) and Amman-BOM on Royal Jordanian.

45000 miles one way.
$85 in fees (for the roundtrip; I did not price fees for one way)

Of course, this is assuming that you have AA miles that you would want to use for this trip

Last edited by earthrain; Jul 28, 11 at 8:49 am..
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Old Jul 28, 11, 4:17 am   #13
 
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Your best value to Bombay from SF is probably Cathay SFO-HKG-BOM, or BA WT+ to J using MFU.
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Old Jul 28, 11, 9:46 am   #14
 
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No.I was doing a mock booking for a one way ord-bom(complete royal jordanian) and the fee came upto around $40.so should be around under $100 for a round trip.
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Old Jul 28, 11, 11:37 am   #15
 
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@earthrain
Thanks for that tip -- its surprising that AA being part of OneWorld, let you book a flight on Jet Airways because AFAIK Jet Airways is set to become part of Star Alliance. Kingfisher is expected to be part of OneWorld by end of 2011.

@evacboy
Using BA miles, I too think that extra charges on Cathay are quite high -- almost similar to booking a BA flight via LHR. Please let us know if you found it otherwise esp on a recent booking.

@mrahul
I had problems for availability on RJ for award seats maybe because I was looking for December. What month did you find available seats on RJ ? Also, is calling the BA exec club the only way to try these mock bookings for award flights ?
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