Should I play Russian Roulette to JNB?

Old Jan 29, 20, 7:16 pm
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Question Should I play Russian Roulette to JNB?

Looking at SNA-ATL-JNB and back, out 5/6 and back 5/16.

Flights in D1 right now are $10k ish, and last year it was significantly lower for me.

What do you think to me holding off booking for a month? Looking at seat maps (I know!) there seems to be 40% open on the out (DL200) on D1 and massively open in PS (I'd be OK with PS but am trying to see if D1 comes down enough). I'd be OK with say $6k there and back.

Is this foolish? Should I just book?
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Old Jan 29, 20, 7:28 pm
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“Uh uh. I know what you’re thinking. “Is there six open seats or only five?” Well to tell you the truth in all this booking excitement I kinda lost track myself. But being this is a B777, the largest twin jet airplane in the world and would blow Airbus off the tarmac, you’ve gotta ask yourself one question: “Do I feel lucky?” Well, do ya, punk?”
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Old Jan 29, 20, 7:39 pm
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Originally Posted by FlyingUnderTheRadar View Post
“Uh uh. I know what you’re thinking. “Is there six open seats or only five?” Well to tell you the truth in all this booking excitement I kinda lost track myself. But being this is a B777, the largest twin jet airplane in the world and would blow Airbus off the tarmac, you’ve gotta ask yourself one question: “Do I feel lucky?” Well, do ya, punk?”
(Stares back scared witless with wild open eyes and mouth!)
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Old Jan 29, 20, 7:41 pm
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You can get $6K out of LAX. It's not DL through ATL, but who cares?

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Old Jan 29, 20, 7:46 pm
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Originally Posted by tanglin View Post
Looking at SNA-ATL-JNB and back, out 5/6 and back 5/16.

Flights in D1 right now are $10k ish, and last year it was significantly lower for me.

What do you think to me holding off booking for a month? Looking at seat maps (I know!) there seems to be 40% open on the out (DL200) on D1 and massively open in PS (I'd be OK with PS but am trying to see if D1 comes down enough). I'd be OK with say $6k there and back.

Is this foolish? Should I just book?
If you're willing to start/end your trip in YVR business class to JNB on your dates is $3309 on KLM/AF (YVR-AMS-JNB-CDG-YVR).
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Old Jan 29, 20, 7:54 pm
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Originally Posted by TTT View Post
If you're willing to start/end your trip in YVR business class to JNB on your dates is $3309 on KLM/AF (YVR-AMS-JNB-CDG-YVR).
And the OP would earn $8k mqd on that flight vs $5k mqd on the DL $6k fare. On the Virgin flight, OP would earn closer to $9k MQD.
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Old Jan 29, 20, 7:56 pm
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There’s also a LATAM J fare to JNB for ~$2300 if you position out of Miami as noted on the premium fare deals page. One hopes this will earn DL credit sometime soon, but nothing is certain at the moment. I can’t comment on LATAM J service.
LA: MIA-JNB r/t in J for ~$2,300
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Old Jan 29, 20, 8:04 pm
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Originally Posted by bsagator View Post
And the OP would earn $8k mqd on that flight vs $5k mqd on the DL $6k fare. On the Virgin flight, OP would earn closer to $9k MQD.
The cheapest option is with a DL coded return but the AF coded return is a few dollars more, FWIW.
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Old Jan 29, 20, 8:28 pm
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Originally Posted by TTT View Post
The cheapest option is with a DL coded return but the AF coded return is a few dollars more, FWIW.
However DL coded wouldn't earn the good MQD/miles.
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Old Jan 29, 20, 8:32 pm
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Originally Posted by bsagator View Post
And the OP would earn $8k mqd on that flight vs $5k mqd on the DL $6k fare. On the Virgin flight, OP would earn closer to $9k MQD.
and also gets to go on the A350 with the new Upper Class and not the janky 1-1-1 layout
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Old Jan 30, 20, 7:38 am
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And also new lounge area in Virgin plane
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Old Jan 30, 20, 10:13 am
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Back online and many thanks for all the suggestions!

@xliioper - thanks, I didn't think of LHR as an intermediate, I will look into this more!

@TTT - yours is even more creative. @bsagator, I have not booked non DL before, is there a specific way to book to get the DL MQD credit?

Definitley would prefer the 350. Thanks @gitismatt!

Thanks again all, work to do!
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Old Jan 30, 20, 10:20 am
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Originally Posted by tanglin View Post
. @bsagator, I have not booked non DL before, is there a specific way to book to get the DL MQD credit?
The DL MQD earn is not always the best as partners earn MQD based on miles flown instead of fare paid. If you are booking a $6K flight, you will earn more on partner coded flights rather than DL coded flights (which will be based on the fare paid). As noted above, you will earn about 9K MQDs on the VS flights even though you are only paying $6K dollars for the flights.
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Old Jan 30, 20, 11:15 am
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Originally Posted by xliioper View Post
The DL MQD earn is not always the best as partners earn MQD based on miles flown instead of fare paid. If you are booking a $6K flight, you will earn more on partner coded flights rather than DL coded flights (which will be based on the fare paid). As noted above, you will earn about 9K MQDs on the VS flights even though you are only paying $6K dollars for the flights.
Likewise for the AF/KL option. Pay $3400, earn 8200 MQDs.

@tanglin - just make sure you enter your SkyMiles number when booking, make sure it's printed on your boarding pass and keep copies of the boarding pass until they post.
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Old Jan 30, 20, 12:10 pm
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Out of LAX I found this DL-coded, AF-operated for $3974 on Priceline. If you can stomach a stopover in Paris... Same issues apply for MQD reductions as described above, but it's a decent fare.
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