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AA: LAX-JFK-MIA-PTY RT $702 in A/J 18.9K EQMs

AA: LAX-JFK-MIA-PTY RT $702 in A/J 18.9K EQMs

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Old Oct 16, 16, 2:15 am   -   Wikipost
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OCTOBER 2016 UPDATE

LAX-JFK TRANSCONTINENTAL FLIGHTS:
Recent fare rule inclusions, effective October 2016, now prevent any routing via JFK on the non-stop transcontinental A321T aircraft. Any future booking will demand a significantly higher fare to route on the non-stops via JFK. Unless the fare rules are modified and these clauses are removed (highly doubtful), the ability to fly on the transcons via JFK is a thing of the past.
IF THE FARE COMPONENT INCLUDES TRAVEL BETWEEN LAX AND NYC
THEN THAT TRAVEL MUST BE ON
ONE OR MORE OF THE FOLLOWING
ANY AA FLIGHT OPERATED BY AA
BUT NOT ON AIRBUS INDUSTRIE A321 (SHARKLETS) AIRCRAFT.
AND
IF THE FARE COMPONENT INCLUDES TRAVEL BETWEEN SFO AND NYC
THEN THAT TRAVEL MUST BE ON
ONE OR MORE OF THE FOLLOWING
ANY AA FLIGHT OPERATED BY AA
BUT NOT ON AIRBUS INDUSTRIE A321 (SHARKLETS) AIRCRAFT.

1. Same day turns possible on the E-jets and morning 738s.

2. Bonuses now based on fare paid.

3. As of OCTOBER 2016, best fares are now around $1000. Fare tends to rise a few hundred for 2 pax. Fares can also occasionally rise for no discernible reason, but the price spikes have thus far proven to be temporary. Fares have the trend to drop during the year. Keep checking for fares in the $700-$800 ranges for best possible pricing.

4. Airport hotels with shuttles - Crowne Plaza Panama Airport & Riande Aeropuerto. The CP is slightly closer; the Riande is slightly nicer. The CP shuttle leaves the hotel every :00 and :30 and runs 24 hours but they seem to leave a few minutes early as it had left when I went down at 4:00AM on the dot. Also, note UberX charges a US$14 surcharge on top of the ~US$2 fare. CP has poor sound isolation, I could hear my neighbors on both sides including talking, crying baby etc. Had to wear earplugs to sleep.

5. Lounges:

Please refer to this thread for more detailed and accurate information on lounge access in general: https://www.flyertalk.com/forum/amer...es-2016-a.html
LAX AIRPORT

= When trying to gain oneworld J / QF F access based on status, it is simply departing/connecting/arriving at any point on same ticket to and from an eligible international destination. PTY is eligible and not excluded regardless of length.

= When trying to gain oneworld J / QF F access based on class of service disregarding status, it is the international long haul clause that applies. Therefore, no "oneworld/QF lounge" access for non-elites for trips to and from PTY unless booking transcons since PTY is under 5 hours. BUT AA doesn't enforce this in their own lounges so Admirals Club access is expected.


AA GOLDs(RUBYs)/NON-ELITES
Admirals Club access is granted regardless of routing as AA does not enforce international long haul rule. However, the oneworld J lounge does for Golds(rubys)/non-elites as they are aware the PTY flights are under 5 hours. Booking transcon flights in J/F gains access to the OWJ/QFF lounges.
<Transcon 3-class (JFK/MIA) in F = Admirals + Flagship + LAX oneworld J lounge + QF F Lounge LAX>
<Transcon 3-class (JFK/MIA) in J = Admirals + LAX oneworld J lounge>
<Non-Transcon F (2-class) + PTY = Technically NONE (PTY under 5 hours therefore class of service rule applies) BUT AA still opens Admirals Club doors to all customers because they dont enforce the long-haul rule>

AA PLATINUMs
Platinums gain access to all AC/Business lounges regardless of routing due to flying to and from PTY. They gain access to First/Flagship lounges when traveling in F 3-class transcon
<Transcon 3-class (JFK/MIA) in F = Admirals + Flagship + LAX oneworld J lounge + QF F Lounge LAX>
<Transcon 3-class (JFK/MIA) in J = Admirals + LAX oneworld J lounge>
<Non-Transcon F (2-class) + PTY = Admirals + LAX oneworld J>

AA EXPs
EXPs have access to all lounges at all airports regardless of routing so long as they are traveling to and from PTY on the same itinerary (an international destination neither excluded from AA's list of ineligible regions nor limited by the flight length rule)
<EXPs Transcon F (2-class) + PTY = Admirals + Flagship + LAX oneworld J + QF F lounge LAX>
<EXPs Non-Transcon F (2-class) + PTY = Admirals + Flagship + LAX oneworld J + QF F lounge LAX>
<EXPs on Transcon 3-class (JFK/MIA + PTY) in Y = Admirals + Flagship + LAX oneworld J + QF F lounge LAX>
<EXPs on Transcon 3-class (JFK/MIA + PTY) in J = Admirals + Flagship + LAX oneworld J + QF F lounge LAX>
<EXPs on Transcon 3-class (JFK/MIA + PTY) in F = Admirals + Flagship + LAX oneworld J + QF F lounge LAX>

NON-AA ONEWORLD ELITES
All sapphires and emeralds have some form of lounge access on any flight systemwide
<non-AA sapphires on ALL AA FLIGHTS = Admirals Club + oneworld J lounge LAX>
<non-AA emeralds on ALL AA FLIGHTS = Admirals Club + oneworld J lounge LAX + Flagship Lounge + QF F lounge LAX>



OTHER AIRPORTS

SFO - Admiral's Club (Centurion Lounge for a fee)
JFK - Admirals Club & Flagship Lounge for EXP/First 3-class/Emerald
MIA - Admiral's Club (Centurion Lounge for a fee), Oneworld Premium Lounge for EXP/First 3-Class/Emerald
PTY - No lounge access (Copa with PP, or for a fee, for 7am or later flights)
YVR - No lounge access (PP for a fee)
DFW - Admiral's Club (with F/C Dining for EXP/Emerald) (Centurion Lounge for a fee)


6. PTY Customs:
Inbound to PTY -
  • 12 noon - no lines reported
  • 8PM Fri (5/27/16) - ~10 min line

Outbound to MIA -
  • 4:40am - no lines reported
7. Finding flights:

NOTE: LAX-JFK NO LONGER VALID FOR LOWEST FARES (effective OCT 2016)

If you want the transcon bonus, enter the search with a connection in JFK. (e.g. LAX-JFK,JFK-MIA,MIA-PTY,PTY-JFK,JFK-SFO.) You can play around from there to get the best deal. Some of the better deals do not start and end in the same city (e.g. start in LAX, end in SFO may be cheaper than start/end in LAX).

Also, it's possible on the outbound portion to time it so you have no more than a 60-minute layover at JFK or MIA (though note that some of these flights aren't available on weekends). While yes, JFK is notorious for delays, this rarely applies for inbound red-eye flights. Also, note that AA 28 below is sometimes "hidden" if you're looking on Google Flights inside a much more expensive trip; that does not necessarily mean, however, that you can't get it for one of the trips under $1,000 (in other words, try it out to see).

NOTE: LAX-JFK NO LONGER VALID FOR LOWEST FARES (effective OCT 2016)

Below is the shortest-possible outbound itinerary that has the LAX-JFK transcon on AA's A321T with flat-bed seats:

LAX-JFK on AA 28
10:45pm - 7:22am

JFK-MIA on AA 200
8:15am - 11:24am
(Note: AA has now switched all of the metal it used on this leg - on all JFK-MIA nonstops - to 757s instead of the 767s with international-style F & J seating.)***767 and 772 are back. Flight 200 is a 772**

MIA-PTY on AA 4434
12:33pm - 2:48pm
(Note: Even more distressingly, AA switched from using a 737 on this leg to an RJ, presumably because summer is off-peak season in Central America. The 6:05pm flight still uses a 737 if a full-size aircraft is a must.)
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Old Jan 25, 16, 2:20 pm
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Austin, TX
Programs: AA PLT, ex-UA 1K, Sixt Plat.
Posts: 591
AA: LAX-JFK-MIA-PTY RT $702 in A/J 18.9K EQMs

I know there was a thread on this topic a while back, but remarkably, fares have actually dropped a bit since then! And yes, the LAX-JFK-LAX legs are on the A321s with lie-flat seats. (Even JFK-MIA-JFK are on a 76x & 77x with lie-flats!)

Dates appear to be quite varied, but here's one such routing:

https://goo.gl/fZLu2s

It requires an overnighter in PTY -- plus, obviously, a red-eye on the LAX-JFK leg -- but the return trip can be done in a single day. It's also slightly lower if you stay in PTY for 2-3 days. Further still, AA extended its bonus-miles promotion into 2016 (though alas, not the one with 3x EQMs).

Edit: I miscalculated the bonus-mile count for EXPs (I mistakenly based it on the bonuses for full-fare tix), but general info on the promo is here: http://www.aa.com/i18n/urls/aadvanta...itle=moremiles

Edit #2 (1/26/16): I can't change the thread title, but rates are now available on a similar routing -- including lie-flats on the transcon segments -- for as low as $437!!!

Last edited by kirker; Jan 26, 16 at 12:30 pm Reason: added edit disclaimer
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Old Jan 25, 16, 2:35 pm
  #2  
 
Join Date: Oct 2015
Location: Seattle, WA
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Posts: 26
Edit: Sorry, my math is off.
bork is offline  
Old Jan 25, 16, 3:01 pm
  #3  
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
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Posts: 296
Thanks! 3 things I'm wondering about.

1) It seems like the price (from your link) has risen to $862

2) Is it possible to route this out of SFO instead of LAX, for about the same price?

3) How do you find other available dates? I mean, what segment is the important one here?

I'm flying into SFO 4th of May and a week or two in Panama combined with a mileage run seems like a pretty nice deal
sexten is offline  
Old Jan 25, 16, 3:03 pm
  #4  
 
Join Date: May 2015
Location: YVR, ZRH
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Originally Posted by sexten View Post
Thanks! 3 things I'm wondering about.

1) It seems like the price (from your link) has risen to $862

2) Is it possible to route this out of SFO instead of LAX, for about the same price?

3) How do you find other available dates? I mean, what segment is the important one here?

I'm flying into SFO 4th of May and a week or two in Panama combined with a mileage run seems like a pretty nice deal
1) Probably because someone booked it

2) Unlikely (LAX>SFO for AA purposes), but you can only find your answer if you try

3) google flights/ITA

best I could find off the top of my head:

Feb6-8, LAX-PTY
648USD
Smiley90 is offline  
Old Jan 25, 16, 3:08 pm
  #5  
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Posts: 365
Does seem widely available.

Here's $690

http://goo.gl/flights/5DZp
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Old Jan 25, 16, 4:31 pm
  #6  
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: BOS/TUL/DEN
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Posts: 184
Originally Posted by kirker View Post
I know there was a thread on this topic a while back, but remarkably, fares have actually dropped a bit since then! And yes, the LAX-JFK-LAX legs are on the A321s with lie-flat seats. (Even JFK-MIA-JFK are on a 76x & 77x with lie-flats!)

Dates appear to be quite varied, but here's one such routing:

https://goo.gl/fZLu2s

It requires an overnighter in PTY -- plus, obviously, a red-eye on the LAX-JFK leg -- but the return trip can be done in a single day. It's also slightly lower if you either stay in PTY for 2-3 days. Further still, AA extended its bonus-miles promotion into 2016 (though alas, not the one with 3x EQMs). EXPs would get an additional 26,000 miles on *top* of everything else!
kirker, I'm struggling with your math on the 26k promo miles for EXP; I see 10k bonus promo miles for EXPs (which is still great):

LAX-JFK (I) - 3500
JFK-MIA (A) - 1000
MIA-PTY (I) - 500
PTY-MIA (I) - 500
MIA-JFK (A) - 1000
JFK-LAX (I) - 3500

Am I missing something?
challett is offline  
Old Jan 25, 16, 4:41 pm
  #7  
 
Join Date: May 2015
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Originally Posted by challett View Post
kirker, I'm struggling with your math on the 26k promo miles for EXP; I see 10k bonus promo miles for EXPs (which is still great):

LAX-JFK (I) - 3500
JFK-MIA (A) - 1000
MIA-PTY (I) - 500
PTY-MIA (I) - 500
MIA-JFK (A) - 1000
JFK-LAX (I) - 3500

Am I missing something?
maybe he meant 100% exp bonus + http://www.aa.com/i18n/urls/aadvanta...itle=moremiles together?
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Old Jan 25, 16, 4:46 pm
  #8  
 
Join Date: Nov 2012
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I see as low as $590 RT, but routing via LAS, MIA/DFW
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Old Jan 25, 16, 4:47 pm
  #9  
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
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Originally Posted by Smiley90 View Post
maybe he meant 100% exp bonus + http://www.aa.com/i18n/urls/aadvanta...itle=moremiles together?
I considered that, but the math doesn't add up there either. My guess is that he mistakenly calculated the LAX-JFK segments as earning 12k promo miles in each direction.
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Old Jan 25, 16, 4:47 pm
  #10  
 
Join Date: May 2015
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Originally Posted by happyland View Post
I see as low as $590 RT, but routing via LAS, MIA/DFW
that's a different deal though which has a) much less mileage and b) no transcon lie-flats. So that's something else entirely.
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Old Jan 25, 16, 4:55 pm
  #11  
 
Join Date: Mar 2015
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Bummer

It's not the 12k miles like the last one, I see what you're saying as it books into I class
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Old Jan 25, 16, 5:08 pm
  #12  
 
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I happened to post about this, a couple hours ago.

I started out of LAS. So right now I have LAS-LAX-JFK-MIA-PTY-MIA-MCO-DCA-JFK-LAX-LAS.

For the bonus RDM, to get the full bonus you need to book it in non discounted (non-I) fares on the JFK-LAX/SFO legs, and be ex plat. Otherwise it's 6k/1k (1k if I) for plat and golds.

Keep in mind all the LAX-JFK fares are in Business, not First, so you will be in the middle of the plane, not front.
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Old Jan 25, 16, 5:46 pm
  #13  
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Originally Posted by Smiley90 View Post
maybe he meant 100% exp bonus + http://www.aa.com/i18n/urls/aadvanta...itle=moremiles together?
Yep, but see my OP for a revised comment.

Last edited by kirker; Jan 25, 16 at 5:53 pm
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Old Jan 25, 16, 6:42 pm
  #14  
 
Join Date: Sep 2015
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I think the Zika Virus scare is keeping people off the planes to South and Central America.
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Old Jan 25, 16, 7:21 pm
  #15  
 
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Prices seem to have jumped - cheapest I can find is ~$840 now
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