Using partner miles for awards on VX

Old Aug 25, 14, 11:15 am
  #1  
A FlyerTalk Posting Legend
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: Berkeley, CA USA
Programs: Piggly Wiggly "Shop the Pig!" Preferred Shopper
Posts: 42,760
Using partner miles for awards on VX

Greetings, folks. There's a thread about redeeming VX points on partner airlines, but I haven't see anything on the flip-side of that: using partner airlines' miles for awards on VX. Anyone have experience with this?

I'm particularly curious about Hawaiian miles. For 40/60/90K HA miles (depending on distance), you can get a roundtrip F award on VX. I wonder if VX imposes any inventory restrictions on such awards.

You can transfer AmEx MR points to Hawaiian, and there are HA-branded credit cards with mileage bonuses. I wonder if this might be a crafty way to sneak into the VX F cabin for cheap.

BTW, Singapore also has partner awards on VX, but for way more miles. Roundtrip in VX F is 54/126/170 SQ miles. No thanks.
dhuey is offline  
Old Aug 25, 14, 11:24 am
  #2  
A FlyerTalk Posting Legend
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: Berkeley, CA USA
Programs: Piggly Wiggly "Shop the Pig!" Preferred Shopper
Posts: 42,760
I just noticed that Virgin Atlantic also has VX awards, and at very reasonable rates. Roundtrip in F on VX for 20/25/30/40/75K VS miles, depending on distance. VS is a Chase Ultimate Rewards airline for points transfers.
dhuey is offline  
Old Aug 25, 14, 1:09 pm
  #3  
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Programs: B6 Mosaic, SPG LT Platinum, UA SIlver, VX eleVAte Gold (RIP)
Posts: 4,386
You have to check availability through the airline where you have your miles. I redeemed Emirates miles for an award on VX. Economy seats were difficult to find but Main Cabin Select was easier. Best thing to do is to call HA and ask what class of service they use to book awards on VX. Then you can use www.flightstats.com or another such website and check availability yourself if HA has no online mechanism for checking availability for VX awards.
sfozrhfco is offline  
Old Aug 25, 14, 3:08 pm
  #4  
A FlyerTalk Posting Legend
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: Berkeley, CA USA
Programs: Piggly Wiggly "Shop the Pig!" Preferred Shopper
Posts: 42,760
Thanks -- I don't think the award inventory would be visible through a normal flight availability check.
dhuey is offline  
Old Aug 25, 14, 3:33 pm
  #5  
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Location: SFO
Posts: 264
it appears HA has the best conversion out of all partner airlines with VX.

You can also use points.com to covert HA points to VX elevate
mdosu is offline  
Old Aug 25, 14, 3:45 pm
  #6  
A FlyerTalk Posting Legend
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: Berkeley, CA USA
Programs: Piggly Wiggly "Shop the Pig!" Preferred Shopper
Posts: 42,760
Originally Posted by mdosu View Post
it appears HA has the best conversion out of all partner airlines with VX.

You can also use points.com to covert HA points to VX elevate
Virgin Atlantic's are a little better: http://www.virgin-atlantic.com/us/en...n-america.html

75K for a return transcon in F vs. 90K on Hawaiian.
dhuey is offline  
Old Aug 25, 14, 4:45 pm
  #7  
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Programs: B6 Mosaic, SPG LT Platinum, UA SIlver, VX eleVAte Gold (RIP)
Posts: 4,386
Originally Posted by dhuey View Post
Thanks -- I don't think the award inventory would be visible through a normal flight availability check.
It was when using Emirates miles. Think they used T class for coach and A for MCS. Was able to look it up through flightstats a few months ago when I used up the rest of my EK points.
sfozrhfco is offline  
Old Aug 25, 14, 5:37 pm
  #8  
A FlyerTalk Posting Legend
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: Berkeley, CA USA
Programs: Piggly Wiggly "Shop the Pig!" Preferred Shopper
Posts: 42,760
Originally Posted by sfozrhfco View Post
It was when using Emirates miles. Think they used T class for coach and A for MCS. Was able to look it up through flightstats a few months ago when I used up the rest of my EK points.
I would dearly love to be wrong about this and to discover that there is a way to check the VX award inventory online. My experience today makes me skeptical.

An hour ago, I called VS to see if I could get an F award on VX, SFO-BOS, out 9/10, ret 9/14. The agent told me that there is availability on the 11 am outbound but nothing on the return. There was availability on 9/15 for a return.

So, here's what expertflyer.com has to say about VX flight availability:

9/10, 11 am flight (VS agent said there was availability):

J2 C1 D0 W6 Q4 Z1 Y7 V7 B7 H2 E1 U0 M0 I0 L0 S0 N0

9/14 flights (two; VS agent said no award availability):

J1 C0 D0 W4 Q2 Z1 Y7 V7 B7 H4 E4 U3 M0 I0 L0 S0 N0
J2 C2 D0 W6 Q3 Z0 Y7 V7 B7 H7 E5 U0 M0 I0 L0 S0 N0

9/15 flights (two; VS agent said there was award availability, but I didn't ask which flight she meant):

J1 C0 D0 W7 Q3 Z0 Y7 V7 B7 H7 E7 U7 M7 I5 L0 S0 N0
J3 C3 D2 W7 Q7 Z3 Y7 V7 B7 H7 E7 U7 M5 I2 L1 S1 N1

I can't see how any of these fare classes square with the award inventory the VS agent mentioned. The only potential I see here is that perhaps Z-class is the award inventory, and the agent didn't notice that the earlier return flight on 9/14 had one seat available. That's possible, but this agent seemed knowledgeable to me and unlikely to make such a mistake.

Last edited by dhuey; Aug 25, 14 at 5:43 pm
dhuey is offline  
Old Sep 2, 14, 1:15 pm
  #9  
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: YVR SFO EOF
Programs: UA 1K, VX S
Posts: 4,864
Originally Posted by dhuey View Post
The only potential I see here is that perhaps Z-class is the award inventory, and the agent didn't notice that the earlier return flight on 9/14 had one seat available. That's possible, but this agent seemed knowledgeable to me and unlikely to make such a mistake.
I don't believe so. JCD are F fares (in decreasing order), Q and Z are MCS and discounted MCS, and the rest are the normal economy buckets.
unavaca is offline  
Old Sep 4, 14, 12:22 pm
  #10  
A FlyerTalk Posting Legend
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: Berkeley, CA USA
Programs: Piggly Wiggly "Shop the Pig!" Preferred Shopper
Posts: 42,760
Originally Posted by unavaca View Post
I don't believe so. JCD are F fares (in decreasing order), Q and Z are MCS and discounted MCS, and the rest are the normal economy buckets.
Thanks; I agree. It seems to me that access to mileage award inventories is different and rarer than the normal fare bucket screens.
dhuey is offline  
Old Sep 4, 14, 12:32 pm
  #11  
FlyerTalk Evangelist
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: DFW
Programs: AA 1M
Posts: 27,394
Originally Posted by sfozrhfco View Post
You have to check availability through the airline where you have your miles. I redeemed Emirates miles for an award on VX. Economy seats were difficult to find but Main Cabin Select was easier. Best thing to do is to call HA and ask what class of service they use to book awards on VX. Then you can use www.flightstats.com or another such website and check availability yourself if HA has no online mechanism for checking availability for VX awards.
Was it a straight forward process? Just call EK and book over the phone?
UA Fan is offline  
Old Aug 18, 15, 3:06 pm
  #12  
 
Join Date: Nov 2012
Posts: 567
I'd like to book one way JFK-SFO flights on VX using my VS miles. How do I check award availability for my dates and determine the fuel surcharges?
mrstraveler is offline  
Old Aug 18, 15, 9:16 pm
  #13  
 
Join Date: May 2011
Posts: 5,777
Originally Posted by mrstraveler View Post
I'd like to book one way JFK-SFO flights on VX using my VS miles. How do I check award availability for my dates and determine the fuel surcharges?
You can check out the award chart here on Virgin Atlantic's site:

http://www.virgin-atlantic.com/us/en...n-america.html

To spend miles:

Please contact the Virgin Atlantic Flying Club team to check availability and mileage required.
Not sure of any YQ charges. Give them a call and let us know?
edcho is offline  
Old Aug 24, 15, 3:10 pm
  #14  
 
Join Date: Nov 2012
Posts: 567
Made the above mentioned VX reservations, using VS miles...YQ charges $5.60 per ticket.
mrstraveler is offline  
Old Aug 24, 15, 3:33 pm
  #15  
FlyerTalk Evangelist
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: DFW
Programs: AA 1M
Posts: 27,394
Originally Posted by mrstraveler View Post
Made the above mentioned VX reservations, using VS miles...YQ charges $5.60 per ticket.
Are you able to book one-ways?
UA Fan is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread