Have you ever flown first class?

Old Jul 9, 13, 1:09 pm
  #1  
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Have you ever flown first class?

I have about 140k UR points racked up and have a CSP card.

I know for sure that I'll be going to San Francisco from NY next summer. Is it worth it to book first class flights on this trip? I was thinking of maybe booking first class one way, and economy coming back (which would be about 37,500 pts a person). I just don't want to seem like I'm wasting points on a domestic flight.

Or should I wait until I rack up over 200k+ and save them for a trip for a 10+ hour long flight like Hong Kong or Tokyo?

Availability for first class international award flights on United seem really limited too...
dunderball is offline  
Old Jul 9, 13, 2:03 pm
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I would rather fly economy class and save rewards for other travels.
townhurst is offline  
Old Jul 9, 13, 2:22 pm
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I consider first class on domestic flights to be a waste of points. I do it only when economy is not available. I recently took a SJC-SAT flight in business class (US Airways) because economy was not available and thought that I wasted my points.

However I have taken business class/first class flights from SFO-LON, SFO-HKG, SFO-India etc and have loved it even though I paid fees ranging from $500-$1000 round trip.

Originally Posted by dunderball View Post
I have about 140k UR points racked up and have a CSP card.

I know for sure that I'll be going to San Francisco from NY next summer. Is it worth it to book first class flights on this trip? I was thinking of maybe booking first class one way, and economy coming back (which would be about 37,500 pts a person). I just don't want to seem like I'm wasting points on a domestic flight.

Or should I wait until I rack up over 200k+ and save them for a trip for a 10+ hour long flight like Hong Kong or Tokyo?

Availability for first class international award flights on United seem really limited too...
rambo is offline  
Old Jul 9, 13, 2:28 pm
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The feedback on this board is probably going to tell you to save for the flights over oceans.

Do what is best for you. If you have no plans to fly to Tokyo, and don't particularly want to go there, then use the points to go to San Francisco.

Another alternative is that I know some carriers have 3 class flights from NY to California. I know there are flights that offer business class from NY to LAX. I don't know about NY to SFO. But business class, if available, is a good alternative to the first class ticket.
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Old Jul 9, 13, 3:03 pm
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It might be worth it for SFO-JFK or LAX-JFK on United p.s., but in general domestic First Class isn't worth paying extra for IMO.
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Old Jul 9, 13, 3:11 pm
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I agree with others and only do domestic first class award tickets if economy tickets are not available.

I use every bit of my yearly PTO and sometimes first class flights align the best with my schedule, so those are the ones I go with.
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Old Jul 9, 13, 4:59 pm
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I used points to book lax to msy on aa once in first, but I checked and made sure my lax to dfw was on a 767 with a lie flat seat, and I had 3 bags to check. I did it partially to save the baggage fees (I had to take the bags and would have had to pay for them if I paid for a y seat) and also because I got the 10% refund on miles as a citi card holder. I still didn't think it was the best use of miles.
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Old Jul 9, 13, 11:34 pm
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I'm a big guy, and the only first class I've ever flown was DFW-LAX on Virgin through Virgin Flying Club (which I'd argue is a sweet spot - 40k for a first class flight) - and I would definitely recommend that. I guess it depends on what you are flying first class in. I'd consider it - especially if you can find a sweet spot - just for the comfort, especially if you're not 5'8/140.
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Old Jul 10, 13, 5:41 am
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I have flown first class. It might be worth it if you are flying from one corner of the country to the diagonal opposite, but otherwise I would say it's not worth the points (or money).
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Old Jul 10, 13, 7:33 am
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Originally Posted by dunderball View Post
I know for sure that I'll be going to San Francisco from NY next summer.
Assuming you plan ahead you should be able to buy that ticket for say $300 in coach (or much less). At a minimum if you fly NYC -> HKG or TYO I'd expect you will pay $800 for coach (or more). Which is worth more to you?

Also keep in mind that you likely will have the points to go NYC -> HKG or TYO in Business or First, likely that is not worth the posted price to you, but is worth something more than the $800 coach price, maybe twice?

Do the grand first class trip, save up your pennies to pay for SFO… or get another credit card to do that trip.
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Old Jul 10, 13, 9:48 am
  #11  
jmw
 
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Even for international flights over an ocean, I do not redeem to business class or first class. Inflating the value of miles due to F/C redemption is a pet peeve. F/C does not make a $1k flight into a $4k or $10k flight. It's still a $1k flight to me. I do not give any extra value for C/F seats. Even for extra bags, it is not the best use of miles. However, I allowed an exception to this rule with a 7 segment international trip with tons of long flights that total to 23k miles even though it's still not the best use of miles.
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Old Jul 10, 13, 11:20 am
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For long-haul flights, I only fly business or first class. I'm fairly tall and I can't "stand" sitting in economy seats for long periods of time. Paying a bit more in miles to come off of a flight feeling refreshed is worth it.
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Old Jul 10, 13, 11:33 am
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Thanks for the feedback, folks. My only anxieties are that booking those award flights seems pretty difficult for those long haul flights, and also the possibility of our points getting devalued.

I don't suppose the other airline partners besides UA will do any better?
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Old Jul 10, 13, 11:41 am
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Best use of UR points in my opinion.

This past spring was able to fly on Lufthansa and Thai First. Great experience that I wouldn't have done without the miles.

Highly recommended.
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Old Jul 10, 13, 1:14 pm
  #15  
mia
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I would rather stay home than fly in economy.
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