NYC-TLV on AA or partner

 
Old Aug 3, 05, 6:09 pm
  #1  
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NYC-TLV on AA or partner

I'm looking to book a trip in late october from NYC-TLV, departing late evening Oct 29th, or early morning Oct 30th and returning Nov 6th.

I want to get the maximum possible AA miles and to minimise the cost.

Options seem to be:

* AA to LHR, using a nested, separate BA/LY ticket LHR-TLV

* BA all the way

* LY direct

* turkish airlines via istanbul (horrible connection times)

* Swiss via ZRH

* Swiss codeshare via ZRH

A few questions. First, expertflyer shows lowest fares in BA S class for about $600 return. But I can't find any availability on all the segments -- why not? Is this some sort of promotion that's not on offer right now?

Otherwise, the lowest thing (tried aa.com, ba.com, expedia etc.) all prices out at about $1100/1200.

Why is the AA codeshare on Swiss via ZRH about double the cost of the same flights with swiss flight numbers?

And is it possible to go via Brussels with SN?

Please help!

Adam
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Old Aug 4, 05, 4:31 am
  #2  
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Some things to keep in mind:

If you take BA between the US and London on your way there, you will not be able to credit that transatlantic BA segment to AAdvantage; and for BA flights in most coach fares you only earn 25% of flown miles.

AA codeshares are often higher than a flight operated and sold to you by the operating carrier under the operating carrier's own code. Inventory and mark-up issues often enough.

Most non-OneWorld coded flights will not earn status miles in the AAdvantage program even if you earn AAdvantage miles.

With nested tickets, you may not be able to check your baggage all the way and should plan on the possibility of having to claim your bags at the connecting point of the two itineraries and re-checking in. Give yourself plenty of time. If there is any problem and you miss your flight or are delayed, you may have more problems than if you were booked on one ticket/itinerary.

Last edited by GUWonder; Aug 4, 05 at 4:33 am
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Old Aug 4, 05, 9:46 am
  #3  
 
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best way to go

I fly the TLV-JFK route a few times a year and the options are really quite simple if you want to maximize miles.
The best way is either SWISS or TURKISH as both give 100% AA miles regardless of class flown in economy which I assume you are taking.
I have found that the connection in Istanbul on TURKISH is not that bad but I don't know the exact times on your date. Service was good and security was first class
I flew SWISS last month via ZURICH and had no problems, with mileage posting within 2 weeks. The advantage going SWISS is that you can get AA codeshare numbers and do a Platinum challenge in one flight in M or other classes (I'm not sure of all of them but they cover most economy tickets) as the trip is 11500 miles Connection was also fast and convenient
I'm not sure about price, but from TLV to JFK there really isn't a big difference
Keep away from ELAL as they give only 50% in most economy classes and BA which gives you nothing for transatlantic
Hope this clears it up but I still long for the old days with the nonstops on TWA'S old 747 and then 767. It was much easier then.
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Old Aug 4, 05, 11:39 am
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I'm taking this trip in october, AUS-ORD-LHR on AA, then LHR-ZRH-TLV on LX, then reverse. I'm expecting 100% miles on LX, and 200% miles on AA.
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Old Aug 4, 05, 1:38 pm
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i do this trip quite a bit. i take the actual AA flight (not the Swiss flight that also has a codeshare with AA) to ZRH, and then the codeshare connection. you wind up with 10 hours or so in ZRH on the way, and if you haven't been, it is a nice day trip and break in the travel.

I've also done turkish. the connections are fine, i didn't really enjoy the transtalantic bit in turkish coach though. i guess the food was better than Aa coach, but one of the reasons i take the aa flight is so i can upgrade, whcih i guess the OP won't be doing.
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Old Aug 4, 05, 1:39 pm
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I'd be grateful to those of you with experience in this realm to continue sharing your 'successes' in finding reasonably priced itineraries with AA partners to TLV, particularly if you've flown J/C etc.

I for one have flown to TLV twice this year (I'm still here...) Although I took LY the first time for simplicity's sake/family reasons, I just couldn't get any of the AA partner itineraries I came up with to work well for the second trip, particularly from a cost perspective. I wound up using Amex miles and cash to fly three of us in J on CO, through EWR.

badatz - On what observations do you base your point that security was first class? (I'm not being facetious; I'm serious, and very curious to know, as this is a prime concern of mine. Good friends who work/have worked security for LY told me they would feel very comfortable flying CO, but I wasn't particularly impressed with security, at least from the perspective of what one can 'see' as a pax.)

FWIW - I've been hearing lately that service on the Swiss route hasn't been very impressive, though I guess it's bound to improve with LH now...just as they're about to leave the AA fold...
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Old Aug 4, 05, 2:46 pm
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Originally Posted by Jakebeth
I'd be grateful to those of you with experience in this realm to continue sharing your 'successes' in finding reasonably priced itineraries with AA partners to TLV, particularly if you've flown J/C etc.

I for one have flown to TLV twice this year (I'm still here...) Although I took LY the first time for simplicity's sake/family reasons, I just couldn't get any of the AA partner itineraries I came up with to work well for the second trip, particularly from a cost perspective. I wound up using Amex miles and cash to fly three of us in J on CO, through EWR.

badatz - On what observations do you base your point that security was first class? (I'm not being facetious; I'm serious, and very curious to know, as this is a prime concern of mine. Good friends who work/have worked security for LY told me they would feel very comfortable flying CO, but I wasn't particularly impressed with security, at least from the perspective of what one can 'see' as a pax.)
THE LAST TIME I FLEW TURKISH WAS 4 YEARS AGO 2 MONTHS BEFORE 9/11 WHAT IMPRESSED ME WAS THAT EVEN IF YOU WERE A TRANSIT PASSENGER IF YOU TOOK A FLIGHT TO THE STATES YOU HAD ANOTHER SET OF MAGNOMETERS AND X-RAYS TO GO THRU TO GET ON A PLANE ADDITIONALLY THERE SEEMED TO HAVE BEEN A LITTLE MIX UP AT THE GATE AND FOR SOME REASON THE SECURITY AGENT DID NOT CHECK OFF MY NAME AFTER I WENT ON THE PLANE. FIVE MINUTES LATER HE CAME ON THE PLANE TO MY SEAT TO PERSONALLY CHECK MY PASSPORT.
THIS GAVE ME A GOOD FEELING ABOUT THE GENERAL SECURITY ATTITUDE AND REMEMBER THIS WAS ROUTINE AND BEFORE 9/11
FWIW - I've been hearing lately that service on the Swiss route hasn't been very impressive, though I guess it's bound to improve with LH now...just as they're about to leave the AA fold...
AS FOR SWISS SERVICE IT WAS VERY GOOD IN COACH CONSIDERING IT WAS 100% FULL ON ALL LEGS BOTH WAYS. THE KOSHER MEAL WAS BETTER THAN AVERAGE ALLTHOUGH I CAN'T SAY ANYTHING ABOUT THE REGULAR MEAL EXCEPT THAT IT LOOKED OKAY AND THAT THEY GAVE OUT PLENTY OF MOVENPICK ICE CREAM ALONG THE WAY. I WAS SATISFIED AND AM GOING AGAIN WITH THEM NEXT MONTH
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Old Aug 4, 05, 3:03 pm
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i just booked jfk-dfw-zrh-tlv-zrh-lhr-jfk about $1000.
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Old Aug 4, 05, 4:15 pm
  #9  
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One could also book SN via BRU - you will earn redeemable, but not elite-qualifying, miles on that segment.
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Old Aug 5, 05, 3:02 am
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Originally Posted by JDiver
One could also book SN via BRU - you will earn redeemable, but not elite-qualifying, miles on that segment.
that is correct but the last I checked when I flew this route a few years ago, there was a 10 hour layover in Brussels on the way to TLV
Don't recommend it to anyone

SWISS is still the best all around bet as long as they are still with AA (make sure you use the AA codeshare numbers)
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Old Aug 5, 05, 9:50 am
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I just got back from the same trip, on Swiss this time.

Having used AA for portions, Swiss, El Al, and Turkish, I would have to say Turkish was the best.

Swiss has lost my luggage 50% of the time (unusual, but it happened).
The entertainment was poor with such recent hits as "Lethal Weapon".

El Al is always good for sentimental value, but I really dislike the Business class upstairs on the 747.

The newer Turkish metal is great! The "lounge" at the
front of business gives you enough room to do exercises and to stretch without standing over someone elses seats.

By the way, if you are using miles, El Al is blocked out through the holidays, and has been blocked out since June. Tourism is up 40% over last year, not that this is so great, but capacity is right up there with the reduced schedules.

The new airport is great, you can read more about it in the airports forum. Only complaint is againthe sentimental value one - you don't step onto Israeli soil before you get oin the bus anymore, you simply step onto a ramp.
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Old Aug 5, 05, 11:02 am
  #12  
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Depending on the travel reason(s) and time availability, a stop in BRU could be seen by some of us as advantageous - a quick train and one is in the thick of good eating and ale. Much better than hanging about in an airport.

Originally Posted by badatz
that is correct but the last I checked when I flew this route a few years ago, there was a 10 hour layover in Brussels on the way to TLV
Don't recommend it to anyone

SWISS is still the best all around bet as long as they are still with AA (make sure you use the AA codeshare numbers)
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Old Aug 6, 05, 11:41 am
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If Malev eventually becomes an AA partner/ONEWORLD member there will be an option JFK-BUD-TLV.

Has anyone ever flown Malev to Tel Aviv?

Last edited by steven b; Aug 6, 05 at 3:17 pm Reason: jetlag
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Old Aug 6, 05, 12:42 pm
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stopover in BRU

Originally Posted by JDiver
Depending on the travel reason(s) and time availability, a stop in BRU could be seen by some of us as advantageous - a quick train and one is in the thick of good eating and ale. Much better than hanging about in an airport.
you definately can go in and tour Brussels with a 10 hour stopover but just my luck the day I was there, it was a legal holiday and everything, shops, museums etc were closed so the tourist info desk said "stay at the airport" and that's what I did for 10 hours
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Old Aug 6, 05, 4:40 pm
  #15  
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thanks

Thanks guys for all the information. It looks like Swiss might be the best thing (friend I'd like to visit in Zurich!)

But I wouldn't get Plat bonus (will have qualified through challenge, I expect, by then)....

How many miles would it take to redeem an economy ticket? Is it worth it? Have people had experience with availability that time of year?
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