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FlyerTalk Forums Thread Wiki: Travelling between USA/India on MR [Consolidated]
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While the specifics of each trip vary, the information required to provide a meaningful answer are always the same:

  • Number of passengers
  • Class of service (economy or a premium cabin)
  • Dates
  • Amount of Membership Rewards points and frequent flyer miles available
  • Budget for co-payments (i.e. taxes, fuel surcharges and other fees)

Please also mention the research already performed, the results, and the reason(s) you prefer not to book the options you have located. This will allow others to improve on, rather than repeat, the work you have already done.


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Old Jul 17, 11, 9:53 am   #1
 
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Thumbs up Travelling between USA/India on MR [Consolidated]

What is the best use of 80,000 AMEX Rewards Points?

I would ideally like a round trip Business or better class ticket to India from the US. Any programs that I could transfer these points to, to get this reward?

Maybe I'm dreaming but any possible options?

Thanks
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Old Jul 17, 11, 11:38 am   #2
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80,000 points will not be enough to get you in Business Class as far as I know on any airline to India. My wife and I just flew to India on Star Alliance using Continental Miles (which you can transfer from Membership Rewards). You need to get to 100,000 points at a minimum to include at least 1 business class flight. The coach segment is 40,000 miles and 60,000 miles in business. If you have United or Continental miles already, then this might be a good option. If you are short miles, then you can sign up for the Chase Sapphire credit card or maybe another Amex Credit card to get some miles quickly.

On a side note, the Continental flight from Newark (EWR) to Delhi in BusinessFirst was wonderful. It's non-stop 14 hours, and we slept for about 8 hours. The remaining time we were awake, we were constantly being fed great food or watching the movies using top-quality in-flight entertainment. Another Star Alliance option is to fly via the Pacific. You can use your United/Continental miles to fly Singapore Airlines -- as many have raved, the best airline in the world. Flying via the Pacific allows you to make a side-stop in a major Asian city as well (i.e. Tokyo, Singapore, Bangkok, Bali, Hong Kong etc.). Good luck!
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Old Jul 17, 11, 6:58 pm   #3
 
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You could transfer to Delta to get a 50% bonus to get to120K Delta miles, which theoretically gets you RT in Business from North America to South Asia. You would need to be super flexible to find the lowest redemption days.

But look at Delta's web site or call to get a flight on hold, then transfer your MR points. Plus I think you have to register for the 50% promo.



http://dmn.delta.com/ace_offers/junemr/

http://thepointsguy.com/2011/05/delt...nd-low-awards/
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Old Jul 17, 11, 8:31 pm   #4
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aap View Post
80,000 points will not be enough to get you in Business Class as far as I know on any airline to India. My wife and I just flew to India on Star Alliance using Continental Miles (which you can transfer from Membership Rewards). You need to get to 100,000 points at a minimum to include at least 1 business class flight. The coach segment is 40,000 miles and 60,000 miles in business. If you have United or Continental miles already, then this might be a good option. If you are short miles, then you can sign up for the Chase Sapphire credit card or maybe another Amex Credit card to get some miles quickly.

On a side note, the Continental flight from Newark (EWR) to Delhi in BusinessFirst was wonderful. It's non-stop 14 hours, and we slept for about 8 hours. The remaining time we were awake, we were constantly being fed great food or watching the movies using top-quality in-flight entertainment. Another Star Alliance option is to fly via the Pacific. You can use your United/Continental miles to fly Singapore Airlines -- as many have raved, the best airline in the world. Flying via the Pacific allows you to make a side-stop in a major Asian city as well (i.e. Tokyo, Singapore, Bangkok, Bali, Hong Kong etc.). Good luck!
Aap, I am going to Mumbai next week from Newark in CO. Right now I've booked economy ticket, but I'm planning to use miles (35k miles + $550 fee) to upgrade to Biz/First class. If you can give more info about the CO's biz class along w/ if it's worth, that'll be great. Thanks!
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Old Jul 17, 11, 8:43 pm   #5
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aap View Post
80,000 points will not be enough to get you in Business Class as far as I know on any airline to India. My wife and I just flew to India on Star Alliance using Continental Miles (which you can transfer from Membership Rewards). You need to get to 100,000 points at a minimum to include at least 1 business class flight.
That'll get you 120,000 miles on BA. You can consult BA's award charts to see what it would take, miles-wise. If you're leaving from the US, the US-LHR segment could have some expensive fuel surcharges on it, but it's less than the cost of a ticket.
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Old Jul 17, 11, 9:16 pm   #6
 
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Originally Posted by mreed911 View Post
That'll get you 120,000 miles on BA. You can consult BA's award charts to see what it would take, miles-wise. If you're leaving from the US, the US-LHR segment could have some expensive fuel surcharges on it, but it's less than the cost of a ticket.
There are two ways of doing it on BA. First is through BA itself:

Quote:
Between North America and South Asia:

90,000 miles = one coach (World Traveller) ticket.
135,000 miles = one coach (World Traveller Plus) ticket.
180,000 miles = one business class (Club Europe/World) ticket.
270,000 miles = one first class ticket.
You'd only need 15k more miles to get the World Traveller Plus ticket. Of course, it's not Business, but it's better than Coach.

Second is doing a Partner Award. On a one partner only award, you can do it for 80k in Economy or 160k in Business, flying on Cathay Pacific from a Cathay Pacific gateway in North America. (So you'd need to get to YYZ, YVR, LAX, JFK, or SFO on your own.)

You could get 50k in bonus miles from the Chase BA card right now. That would easily put you over the top for either of those rewards. I would go with the Partner Award because the BA award would likely cost you a good chunk of change. Not to mention Cathay Business Class vs. BA World Traveller Plus.
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Old Jul 17, 11, 10:53 pm   #7
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"I would go with the Partner Award because the BA award would likely cost you a good chunk of change. Not to mention Cathay Business Class vs. BA World Traveller Plus."

BA will assess high fuel surcharges on a U.S. to India Business Class redemption regardless of which carrier one actually flies. The surcharge on CX will be less than on BA via LHR or on RJ via AMM, but it will not be nothing; and I'm not sure that BA will permit a TPAC routing on a U.S. to India award because of the much greater travel distance involved (at least if one were starting from NYC).
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Old Jul 18, 11, 5:16 am   #8
 
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Still, US-India Business award using BA miles would cost more than 120000 miles.
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Old Jul 18, 11, 5:55 am   #9
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MJLouise View Post
You could transfer to Delta to get a 50% bonus to get to120K Delta miles, which theoretically gets you RT in Business from North America to South Asia. You would need to be super flexible to find the lowest redemption days.

But look at Delta's web site or call to get a flight on hold, then transfer your MR points. Plus I think you have to register for the 50% promo.



http://dmn.delta.com/ace_offers/junemr/

http://thepointsguy.com/2011/05/delt...nd-low-awards/
That's probably the route to choose. Finding flights on AF/KL can keep the mileage at 120K. Flying DL will mean it almost certainly is more than that. 9W and IT flights can be booked with SkyMiles, but I don't know of any way to check their award inventory online. (I've seen some indication that maybe if you sign up for their FF programs and search the seats will be available for partner booking, but that's never a sure thing.)
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Old Jul 26, 11, 6:46 pm   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tintin_007 View Post
Aap, I am going to Mumbai next week from Newark in CO. Right now I've booked economy ticket, but I'm planning to use miles (35k miles + $550 fee) to upgrade to Biz/First class. If you can give more info about the CO's biz class along w/ if it's worth, that'll be great. Thanks!
The food and service we received was truly first class on our CO Bus-First flight from EWR-DEL, but the seating is more like Business Class, although still very enjoyable. Highly recommend ordering a special meal instead of the standard meal.

Now everyone values points differently, and international use is the most valuable. I would say 35k points is worth about $400. Add in the $500 cash upgrade portion, and your total cost is $950. Some would argue that's a bargain to upgrade to business class, and others would say that's almost the cost of another economy class ticket to India. I traveled from the West Coast, so my upgrade included a domestic first class segment as well. I personally would have used points for this ticket (instead of buying as you did) since the difference between economy and business class award was only 40k points.
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Old Aug 12, 11, 10:48 am   #11
 
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Best Deal for 3 F Awards to India

Hello All,

I am looking for the best way to maximize my MR points for 3 RT F awards from US to India. I am currently banking FF miles with SQ so I am not aware of the Oneworld & Skyteam awards.

Which airline(s) would be the best to transfer miles to?
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Old Oct 28, 11, 12:26 pm   #12
 
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Reedeming MR points for a one-way flight to India

I apologize in advance if this is not the right place to ask this question. I am planning to go to New Delhi (actually Kathmandu, but I'll spend some time in Delhi) the second week of November. I have 76K Amex MR points right now. I have never actually redeemed my miles/points. What would be the best way to do it? I did some research on my own and with Virgin Atlantic, it costs me 39,750 miles i.e. 39.75K MR points (1:1) and USD 391.50 for taxes, fees and surcharges. Similarly, for British Airways, I would need 45K miles or 45K MR points (1:1) and USD 422 for taxes, fees and surcharges. Both flights are economy-class and transit through London. Another thing I could do is pay my flight with points which cost about USD850 right now.

What do you suggest is the best option?

Your help/suggestion is really appreciated.
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Old Oct 28, 11, 1:04 pm   #13
 
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Aeroplan

Did you check Aeroplan and see how many miles you need through Air Canada?
AC is with Star Alliance and has plenty of international routes covered.

Also, with British, you might be able to get the non-stop route that American Airlines flies from ORD - DEL. I am not sure if fuel surcharges would be less if you take a non-stop flight.
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Old Oct 28, 11, 3:23 pm   #14
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It would be helpful to know from which city the OP is departing.
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Old Oct 28, 11, 10:22 pm   #15
 
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Originally Posted by gates1580 View Post
Did you check Aeroplan and see how many miles you need through Air Canada?
AC is with Star Alliance and has plenty of international routes covered.

Also, with British, you might be able to get the non-stop route that American Airlines flies from ORD - DEL. I am not sure if fuel surcharges would be less if you take a non-stop flight.
With Aeroplan, I just checked. It costs me 67K points for a one-way flight redemption. Thanks!
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