Etihad Launches Award Travel On El Al With Excellent Availability; Redeem El Al Points On 3 Airlines

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It’s been in the works since 2020, but Etihad and El Al are now full frequent flyer partners. You can earn and redeem miles between both airlines.

You can find the Etihad redemption chart for El Al flights here and the El Al redemption chart for Etihad flights here.

It’s the 3rd airline that you can redeem with El Al points, after Alaska and Qantas. However until El Al rejoins with a US bank transfer partner option, that’s not terribly useful for Americans.

You’ll need to call either Etihad or El Al to book partner award travel.

Qantas has a very good award chart for travel on El Al, but most El Al award flights have been blocked from booking with Qantas over the past couple years.

2 months ago, Alaska launched award redemption for El Al flights. Availability is excellent, and prices are variable based on the season, ranging from 40-50K in coach, 65-80K in premium, and 85-100K in business each way.

However, no major bank point currencies transfer to Alaska, so Marriott is the only decent option at a 60K:25K ratio.

Etihad’s award chart for travel on El Al isn’t cheap. But you can transfer points from AMEX, Capital One, or Citi instantly to Etihad at a 1:1 ratio.

I called Etihad and confirmed that their award space matched up with Alaska’s generous award space in the sample dates, and not the stingy Qantas award space that showed none of this space available:

But it won’t come cheap for Americans.

Boston or NYC to Tel Aviv will clock in at 67K coach, 74K premium, or 120K business each way. Miami or LA to Tel Aviv will set you back 75K coach, 90K premium, or 140K business each way.

Other flights are a better deal.

  • Larnaca to Tel Aviv will cost 6K coach, 7.5K premium, or 10K business each way.
  • Athens to Tel Aviv will cost 12K coach, 13K premium, or 20K business each way.
  • Budapest, Dubai, Rome, or Vienna to Tel Aviv will cost 15K coach, 19K premium, or 30K business each way.
  • Milan or Zurich to Tel Aviv will cost 23K coach, 25K premium, or 40K business each way.
  • London or Paris to Tel Aviv will cost 28K coach, 31K premium, or 50K business each way.

That means if you find a flight deal to Europe, you can combine it with an El Al flight by using Etihad miles.

Etihad’s distance based award chart for travel on El Al:

 

That being said, Etihad will be making unified award charts between all of its partner award charts starting March 8th, so we’ll have to wait for them to see whether rates will go up, down, or stay the same.

Want to earn Etihad miles?

  • You can transfer AMEX, Capital One, or Citi points to Etihad at a 1:1 ratio or Marriott points at a 60K:25K ratio. 

AMEX cards with transferable Membership Rewards points include:

If you or a friend has one of the following Citi cards, you can transfer points into miles:

  • Citi Premier has a 60,000 point bonus for spending $4,000 in 3 months, 3 points per dollar on airfare, hotels, travel agents, groceries, gas, and dining. $95 annual fee. Read more here.

Citi no-annual fee cards that are fantastic for earning points, but require one of the cards above for points transfers include:

  • The Citi Double Cash card offers 2% cash back or 2 points per dollar spent everywhere that can be transferred into ThankYou points. If you also have a Citi Premier Card you can transfer points into miles. No annual fee. Read more here.
  • The Citi Custom Cash Card offers 5 points per dollar on up to $500 in purchases in your top eligible spending category each billing cycle. This is marketed as 5% cash back, but will actually come in the form of 5 ThankYou points per dollar spent! Eligible categories include Restaurants, Gas Stations, Grocery Stores, Select Travel, Select Transit, Select Streaming Services, Drugstores, Home Improvement Stores, Fitness Clubs, and Live Entertainment. You will also get 0% APR on purchases and balance transfers for 15 months. No annual fee. Read more here.
  • The Citi Rewards+ Card offering 20,000 points for spending $1,500 in 3 months. This card can’t transfer points on its own, but can transfer points if you have one of the Citi cards above. This card automatically rounds up rewards earned on every purchase to the nearest 10 points, meaning you earn 10 points on a $0.50 Amazon balance reload. Earn 2 points on $6K in annual spending at supermarkets, and a 10% points rebate when you redeem points, up to a 10K points rebate per year. If you also have a Citi Premier Card you can transfer points into miles and get a 10% points rebate on transferred or redeemed miles. No annual fee. Read more here.

Capital One cards with transferable points include:

Marriott cards with transferable points include:

Will you book travel on El Al with Etihad points?


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49 Comments On "Etihad Launches Award Travel On El Al With Excellent Availability; Redeem El Al Points On 3 Airlines"

All opinions expressed below are user generated and the opinions aren’t provided, reviewed or endorsed by any advertiser or DansDeals.

yelped

Is there any chance of ELAL stopping to block Qantas from booking their flights? Any reason why Qantas allows that to happen?

Moishe bernsonn

I tried Alaska Airlines website did a search for NYC 2 TLV however the site only showed British airways flights and no elal flights…. how do you get elal flights to appear on the Alaska Airlines website?

Yisroel

Can you please specify he award cancellation fee for Etihad.
Thanks

Mdv

For those with business plat or csr only makes sense to pay 120k for business if cash is more than 2k each way… in which case it likely won’t be available for partner Redemptions

Harry

This is good news as I am stuck with a bunch of Etihad miles due to Covid and can finally use them

BT

Are the alaska prices subject to change due to Alaska going dynamic?

Aaron

Hey Dan, not regarding Etihad but not sure where else to ask. What is the deal with delta where every TLV/NYC delta flight being over 100k miles for economy and 300k+ for business (one way)? Searched many many dates and that is the minimum standard. I also never see any direct delta flights available through Air France. Am I doing something wrong or am I stuck with a bunch of delta miles which are almost worthless? Thanks

BUYING

I might be interested in them
iF YOU ARE INTRESTED LET ME NOW

Ly

Availability is excellent only for economy when booking LY via AS it’s almost impossible to find in business. Tlv to nyc I found on Purim and the last day of chol hamoed and the first few days of אייר.

steve

do you know the taxes using ethiad miles?

MF

+1

JR

wait! I have a few hundred thousand marriot points, are you saying don’t use them for hotels anymore better transfer to Alaska and use for ELAL? I

David

Is it cheaper for non Americans?

Max

Anyway to see availability? Or I have to call them for that?

Moishe

If transferring Marriott to Airlines, is there any advantage of Marriott to Alaska Airlines or Marriott to Eithad airlines?

MF

dan,
how much are the fuel surcharges?
it is not your type to omit this info;)

meilech

I understand that Qantas aren’t showing ELAL availability, but do you have a clue what the rate is compared to Qantas?

Israel

****PSA*** Found availability to Israel round trip for 2 by calling Etihad. Transfered 480k points from amex, and booked the flights through an agent, then it went into “Waitlist.” Apparently El Al has to confirm the tickets after, and if they don’t do it within 30 min the ticket gets canceled. So after spending hours on the phone my tickets were canceled and are now no longer available. I would wait a bit longer until they know what they’re doing because all the agents seem to be confused.

MF

any success?

Zack

I succesfully booked and travelled one-way LY J tickets via Etihad a few months ago

etihadElAl

hi Dan, I have been calling Etihad numerous times and they are telling me one-way elal award tickets are not permitted (even thought the website says they are). have you had any experience with this?
Thanks

Zalmen

@dan
Just booked jfk-tlv ow elal premium economy with Etihad, and they charged me 74,469 miles.
No matter how much I said the award chart says otherwise..
Just FYI, that prices are for reference only it seems.

eli

How do i book elal flights on ethiats?

Zack

Find the El Al ticket you want is available on Alaska, call Etihad and create a booking for the reservation you want, then (preferably while you’re still on the phone) transfer points into Etihad and complete the booking. If the points don’t transfer instantly, call back and complete the booking as soon as they do.

Benjamin

Hi Dan

I’m not sure where to put this: we love your blog and use it for Israel travel advice all the time. The topic of Etihad and El Al could use more love. At the moment the landscape of El Al booking via US based points, as it seems to me: Alaska leaving the El Al partnership, Qantas award availability on El Al is extremely hard to find and as such not a reliable option, Delta is the new player but their rates are ridiculous. That leaves Etihad, with rates that are high but fixed and not ridiculous, as the only reliable source of tickets on El Al using US based points. So it seems worth its own post… I’ve had good experiences but as you’ve written it requires 1) calling them and 2) for availability elsewhere, and this is not very reliable as Delta doesn’t show available space as accurately as Alaska. I’ve found many cases where Alaska’s online availability matches what the Etihad agent on the phone sees, but Delta’s does not… what can we do when Alaska drops El Al?

YB

The condition for using Etihad points makes it not very useful: “Effective 13 February 2023, you can redeem your miles for reward flights by contacting the Etihad Guest Service Centre 24 hours before your date of departure”.

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