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Award booking services - a list and some reviews

Old Feb 3, 2014, 1:11 pm
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Last edit by: PointsNmiles
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This list is not an endorsement of any particular award booking service.
Please do your research and read this thread.

Please refer to the FT Disclaimers for disclaimer of responsibility for use of these services, etc.

Please feel free add other services and options you are aware of to this wiki.

Also, please post any personal experiences you may have with any of these services in this thread.

Reviews which appear to have been solicited by the service providers based upon content and posting history will be deleted. If you are a brand new or a member with a low post count and wish that your post not be deleted, please be sure to include the following details in your review: program(s), number of miles or points and the desired destinations and hotels. Please also include the itinerary booked by the service including the airlines, routing and hotels, the number of points needed to book that trip and the fee charged.

Award booking services (alphabetical):
  • Award Advocate - Domestic $100 p/p International $125 p/p, no additional charge for last minute. Changes $50. Also 10% discount for families traveling with children and active military
  • Award Booking Service - $25 up front search fee plus $150/ticket & $49 per 30-minute skype consultations (ask anything!)
  • Award Butler - Award Search: $79 for up to two passengers; flight info provided but does not include booking. Booking starting at $149 for first two passengers.
  • Award Chaser - Search fee starting at $79. Itinerary only - no booking provided
  • Award Expert - (MatthewLAX on FT, Live and Let's Fly blog) $150 first passenger, $100 each additional passenger; $250 per person for RTW; $50/ticket booking fee.
  • Award Flight Assist - Specialising in Australian frequent flyer programs; from AU$199 for the first passenger, additional charges for complex itineraries and more passengers
  • Award Planners - One way $129, additional person $99; Round trip $199, additional person $99; Multi City $249 additional person $149
  • Award Travel Consulting - Award Search: $125/person; Booking ticket: $75/itinerary; changes: new trip
  • Awardmagic - $179 per person OW/RT plus one stop or $279 per person for three or more destinations
  • BoundlessMiles - (Dominik Żmuda/Travelling the World): Booking: starting at $50 per passenger; Changes: half of award flight service fee paid
  • CabinChief - Bookings are $49 per pax
  • CatchUsFlying - $125 CAD/person for round-trip, $225 CAD/person for complex round-the-world. Consulting available at $75CAD/hour. (loganre17) on FT
  • Chatflights - Use app to chat in real time with real travel hackers to book travel for points or cash. Booking fee $295 pp coach and business, $395 pp first class.
  • Cranky Concierge - $75 per person each way domestic; $95 per person each way international
  • First Class and Beyond - "Concierge-style" bookings. Fee is based on the value of the retail ticket, $250/person minimum.
  • Flightfox - Consultative flight searching; fees start at $100 (requires credit card authorization up front)
  • Flyermiles - (Graham / YOWgary) $150 + 50 per additional person, $250 for RTW awards. Offers detailed information on how to book your own award.
  • iflywithmiles.com - (Mike/Melissa): 150 USD first person, 85 for additional person on same itin. Change fees vary.
  • JJ Award Travel - FT Member since 2012 - No upfront fees. Basic one-way or round-trip air award travel consisting of a total of 8 legs or less for the entire itinerary: $250 for the first person and $125 for each additional person. Complex one-way or round-trip air award travel consisting of a total of 9 or more legs per direction is additional. FT members get a 10% discount.
  • Loophole Travel - Award Travel Coaching $150 for first passenger and $100 for each additional passenger. Points Earning and MS Coaching also available.
  • Luxury Travel Consulting - (Jasper2009 on Flyertalk): $150 per person per ticket
  • Miles Help - Domestic: $100 OW; $140 RT/complex. International: $150 OW; $200 RT/complex. $50 each additional person
  • Miles Momma Booking Services - Airline Booking: $200 up to 2 passengers. $75 additional passengers. $50 non-refundable up front. Changes $50
  • MileValue Award Booking Service - (Scott Grimmer): Booking: $125 per person per award; $15 up front. Full payment required for successful search even if not booked. Change fee not currently listed; previously $79
  • PMM Travel Consulting - (Miguel R. Quinones/AwardWallet Blog): Booking: $125 per passenger for the first two, $99 for each additional. Additional charges for complex itineraries. Credit card advice and travel planning services.
  • Point.me - merger of services formerly provided by PointsPro (Ben Schlappig/One Mile At a Time) and Juice Miles
  • Reward Flyer - Domestic: $50 first person; $25 each additional person. International: $100 first person; $50 each additional person
  • SFO777.com - (SFO777 on FT) Booking: $200 first passenger, $100 each additional passenger; change fees vary
  • Travel Codex - Per person pricing: $50 for North America award / $100 for International award.
  • The Flying Mustache - $100 per ticket; additional fees for more than eight segments. Change fees vary
  • The Short Final - $100 per person. $100 upfront deposit that is fully refundable if no itinerary found.
  • Travel Is The Point - USA, Canada/Mexico & the Caribbean – starting at $50 per person. All Other International Destinations – starting at $100 per person.
  • zainman - FT member since 2009. Booking: $200 first passenger, $100 each additional passenger; change fees vary, consultant services for $ as well
  • Zero Hassle Rewards - $100 per person. Discounts for domestic and one-way
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Award booking services - a list and some reviews

Old Nov 12, 2018, 8:50 pm
  #646  
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Join Date: May 2009
Location: FRA / YEG
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Originally Posted by Liface
Do any of these do open-ended destination suggestions?

I frequently find myself in situations where I don't care really at all what my destination is, I just want to go somewhere and get the best redemption possible.
Here's how I imagine it working. I deliver:
  • A list of my current points
  • Some rough dates
  • A region I want to travel to (e.g. "Central and South America")
A service delivers me the cheapest 5 destinations where I can get the best redemptions for my points, with current availability for my dates. For example, my input is: "I want to go to a Latin American country around Thanksgiving" and I get back:
  • Cabo for 22K Southwest points
  • SJU for 55K AA miles + $86.20
  • Mazatlan for 55K AA miles + $183.36
  • etc.
I can then pick which of the destinations/pricing suits me best.

I can't speak for all award booking services, but I'd say such a request wouldn't be entirely uncommon.

I've certainly received requests along the lines of "interested in spending Thanksgiving in ICN/HKG/NRT, whatever the lowest mileage cost is" or "want to travel to Western Europe during my summer vacation" and I'd then send the client the top x options along with a short pro and con list for each option.

That being said, if your dates and departure airport are fixed, there may not be all that many different options to choose from, plus finding award availability on a connecting flight within your destination region often is much easier than finding any longhaul award availability. But it certainly wouldn't be uncommon for me to send over a list along the lines of:

- LAX-LHR - British Airways business class - 57.5k miles + ~$500 in taxes/fees/surcharges (various other European destinations can be added at no additional cost)
- LAX-ZRH-LHR - Swiss business class - 70k miles + minimal taxes/fees (no fuel surcharges) (various other destinations European destinations also available at the same price)
- LAX-LHR - Virgin Atlantic business class - 75k miles + minimal taxes/fees (no fuel surcharges)
- LAX-LHR - Virgin Atlantic business class - 55k miles + ~$500 in taxes/fees/surcharges
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Jasper2009 is offline  
Old Nov 17, 2018, 6:18 pm
  #647  
 
Join Date: Mar 2015
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Originally Posted by Jasper2009
I can't speak for all award booking services, but I'd say such a request wouldn't be entirely uncommon.

I've certainly received requests along the lines of "interested in spending Thanksgiving in ICN/HKG/NRT, whatever the lowest mileage cost is" or "want to travel to Western Europe during my summer vacation" and I'd then send the client the top x options along with a short pro and con list for each option.

That being said, if your dates and departure airport are fixed, there may not be all that many different options to choose from, plus finding award availability on a connecting flight within your destination region often is much easier than finding any longhaul award availability. But it certainly wouldn't be uncommon for me to send over a list along the lines of:

- LAX-LHR - British Airways business class - 57.5k miles + ~$500 in taxes/fees/surcharges (various other European destinations can be added at no additional cost)
- LAX-ZRH-LHR - Swiss business class - 70k miles + minimal taxes/fees (no fuel surcharges) (various other destinations European destinations also available at the same price)
- LAX-LHR - Virgin Atlantic business class - 75k miles + minimal taxes/fees (no fuel surcharges)
- LAX-LHR - Virgin Atlantic business class - 55k miles + ~$500 in taxes/fees/surcharges
That makes a lot of sense, and I'm sure people benefit from the service, and it makes your job much simpler
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Old Nov 17, 2018, 6:25 pm
  #648  
 
Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 473
Originally Posted by MarkP24
That makes a lot of sense, and I'm sure people benefit from the service, and it makes your job much simpler
I'd say we also get similar requests. Some requests are very focused and some are totally open-ended and the client wants the bulk of the research done for them. That said, it really depends on the client.
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Old Nov 17, 2018, 6:27 pm
  #649  
 
Join Date: Mar 2015
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Posts: 2,217
Originally Posted by PointsNmiles
I'd say we also get similar requests. Some requests are very focused and some are totally open-ended and the client wants the bulk of the research done for them. That said, it really depends on the client.
As with most service industries
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Old Nov 17, 2018, 6:28 pm
  #650  
 
Join Date: Aug 2012
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Originally Posted by MarkP24
As with most service industries
Very true.
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Old Dec 27, 2018, 5:48 pm
  #651  
 
Join Date: Sep 2018
Posts: 2
Award travel

New to this forum. JW if there are services that book your travel using awards/points/miles or is that not something that is done?
Flytetyme is offline  
Old Dec 27, 2018, 5:55 pm
  #652  
 
Join Date: May 2002
Location: St Louis, MO
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That’s kind of how it works. U let them know what u have points wise and they help put a trip together for u.
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Old Dec 27, 2018, 6:03 pm
  #653  
 
Join Date: Nov 2013
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Posts: 658
Originally Posted by Flytetyme
New to this forum. JW if there are services that book your travel using awards/points/miles or is that not something that is done?
I'm not sure if you've read through even some of the above posts, but if I understand correctly, this is precisely what some (most? all?) of these services do.

Look a few posts above for the post by Jasper2009 for a discussion like this from one member of FT who has such a service.

We read about him here a few years ago, and have used him quite a few times in the past, and have several trips planned in the future with him. He is remarkably helpful, and yes, he'll book the trips using our awards.

Here is a link to his website:
Award Bookings - Luxury Travel Consulting Luxury Travel Consulting

GC
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Old Dec 28, 2018, 2:00 am
  #654  
 
Join Date: Sep 2018
Posts: 2
Award travel

i understand that they find ways for you to use your award travel. However I was wondering if there are services or companies who book travel for you using their award points/miles not your own.
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Old Dec 28, 2018, 2:33 am
  #655  
 
Join Date: Nov 2013
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Posts: 658
Originally Posted by Flytetyme
i understand that they find ways for you to use your award travel. However I was wondering if there are services or companies who book travel for you using their award points/miles not your own.
Unless they are doing that for free, that would involve selling the awards points, right?
That is expressly not allowed, AFAIK, and could or would lead to loss of all accumulated points, or other negative consequences.

Others here may have more specific information or experiences.

We've used our own airline points for our spouses (and also kids/grands) to join us on trips, but that is quite different (and is certainly allowed).
My understanding is that we could also use our points to get tickets for family (or friends) even if we didn't accompany them, but again, that would be only if there was no payment.

Keep in mind that you can *purchase* awards points on some programs, so why not do that, and then use a service to help you use them (or help you decide which awards you could purchase for travel where you want to go).
We haven't needed to purchase points *yet*, but as we continue to travel more and more, we are aware that doing so would yield great value for the types of premium air travel we prefer.

Note that there can be limits on the amount of points purchased per year per person, so depending upon where you want to do, and in what class, you might want to start accumulating those points.

Is there a reason why purchasing points yourself, from the airlines - which is fully allowed - would not work for you?

GC
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Old Dec 28, 2018, 9:13 am
  #656  
 
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Suwanee,Ga ,usa
Posts: 3,617
Do any of these services have more success with specific airlines? I am interested in using one of them for a J trip for me and my wife next fall (although open to Spring) to Italy using Delta miles. In the past I've had no trouble booking tickets like this, but it now seems like Delta's redemption availability (at reasonable rates ) is amazingly high. they have also made it more difficult to search.Thanks
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Old Dec 28, 2018, 10:44 am
  #657  
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
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Originally Posted by Flytetyme
i understand that they find ways for you to use your award travel. However I was wondering if there are services or companies who book travel for you using their award points/miles not your own.
In my own service I don't sell anyone my miles or points. This is against the rules and not wise. If caught the owner of the miles loses them and the tickets get cancelled.

I only offer my help redeeming my client's miles for their own flights. Not worth the risk if you ask me.

Originally Posted by jabez
Do any of these services have more success with specific airlines? I am interested in using one of them for a J trip for me and my wife next fall (although open to Spring) to Italy using Delta miles. In the past I've had no trouble booking tickets like this, but it now seems like Delta's redemption availability (at reasonable rates ) is amazingly high. they have also made it more difficult to search.Thanks
I have done a lot of Delta bookings but unfortunately it is flat out awful for their own flights most of the time. Delta simply deleted their award charts and are now tying the miles prices closer to the cash prices hence the really high numbers.

Last edited by TWA884; Dec 28, 2018 at 11:35 am Reason: Merge consecutive posts by the same member; Please use the multi-quote function. Thank you.
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Old Jan 12, 2019, 8:38 am
  #658  
 
Join Date: Jan 2019
Posts: 1
LAX --> BKK

Taking my mom to Thailand next January (LAX - BKK) and wondering what would be the best service to use or if anyone has some recommendations for best use of my 560,000 Chase points. Business/First class is preferred.
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Old Jan 12, 2019, 9:02 am
  #659  
 
Join Date: Nov 2013
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Posts: 658
Originally Posted by GeezerCouple
I'm not sure if you've read through even some of the above posts, but if I understand correctly, this is precisely what some (most? all?) of these services do.

Look a few posts above for the post by Jasper2009 for a discussion like this from one member of FT who has such a service.

We read about him here a few years ago, and have used him quite a few times in the past, and have several trips planned in the future with him. He is remarkably helpful, and yes, he'll book the trips using our awards.

Here is a link to his website:
Award Bookings - Luxury Travel Consulting Luxury Travel Consulting

GC
Originally Posted by JCN9000
Taking my mom to Thailand next January (LAX - BKK) and wondering what would be the best service to use or if anyone has some recommendations for best use of my 560,000 Chase points. Business/First class is preferred.
We continue to use Jasper2009 - link to his website is in my post that is copied right above yours.

We've had extraordinary service from him, including with last minute F availability (from the already confirmed J) while we were at a Buddhist Monastery for a couple of nights. Nice to find out that we were all set with the F tickets. IF we had needed to have him contact us first, we'd certainly have lost those two precious CX F seats!

He really does go out of his way to figure out what the best choices are for a person, given any preferences for routing, or type of seating/beds, etc.

(Also, we had the privilege of actually meeting him, twice. So we can verify he's not a "bot" He knew our travel plans, no surprise, and it turned out we have an annual trip to a location he is frequently at. It was just nice to *meet* someone we otherwise only know "online".)

GC
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Old Jan 12, 2019, 11:19 am
  #660  
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Hawai'i Nei
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Posts: 7,249
Originally Posted by GeezerCouple
We continue to use Jasper2009 - link to his website is in my post that is copied right above yours.

We've had extraordinary service from him, including with last minute F availability (from the already confirmed J) while we were at a Buddhist Monastery for a couple of nights. Nice to find out that we were all set with the F tickets. IF we had needed to have him contact us first, we'd certainly have lost those two precious CX F seats!

He really does go out of his way to figure out what the best choices are for a person, given any preferences for routing, or type of seating/beds, etc.

(Also, we had the privilege of actually meeting him, twice. So we can verify he's not a "bot" He knew our travel plans, no surprise, and it turned out we have an annual trip to a location he is frequently at. It was just nice to *meet* someone we otherwise only know "online".)

GC
Hi GC,

Very pleased you have had such good service from a reputable source.

I'm assuming that to use your FF account, he needs all your login information, FF account number, answers to challenge questions, your record locator, your credit card number as well as some as your DOB, Is this true?
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