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Update, 3/7: Etihad has now published their new “simplified” award charts.
As I guessed might happen below, they are using the pricey new El Al award chart for use on all partner airlines. This effectively kills off all of the program’s sweet spots.
Originally posted on 2/17:
Etihad has some excellent partner award redemptions that I’ve written about in the past.
If you want to fly on Etihad, you’ll be better off using Air Canada or American miles, though you need to chat or call American to book Etihad awards.
Etihad has different charts for each of its airline partners, and they haven’t been updated in many years, leaving some excellent award bargains up for redemption.
Sadly, those days are coming to an end. The airline emailed me that they will offer a “simplified redemption table” starting on March 10th. They will take their award booking system offline on March 8th in preparation for that, so if you do want to book any last awards, now is the time.
For example here is their award chart for travel on American, which is very similar to American’s pre-devaluation 2015 award chart.
- You can fly to Europe or South America for just 20K miles each way in coach on off-peak dates or 50K miles in business/first.
- A business class ticket to Israel is 67.5K miles each way.
- A business class ticket to Australia is 62.5K miles each way.
- A 3 cabin first class flight between JFK or Miami and Los Angeles or San Francisco is just 25K miles each way.
American no longer makes it easy to see which dates have saver award seats, and indeed they are ending the saver award concept in the coming weeks as well.
Bit you can use the American award calendar to find lower priced dates and then check on BA.com for saver award space on American.
While it goes for 51.5K BA Avios, it will be just 25K Etihad miles:
Unfortunately, you’ll need to call Etihad to book partner awards, though starting on March 10th, after the new chart goes into effect, you’ll be able to book American and Virgin Australia awards online.
Other partner airlines also have award bargains with Etihad miles.
For example, here is Etihad’s award chart for travel on Royal Air Maroc:
That means you can fly nonstop in a Dreamliner from JFK, Boston, Miami, Montreal, or Washington DC to Casablanca for just 22K miles in coach (plus $136 in fuel surcharges) or 44K miles in lie-flat business class (plus $186 fuel surcharges) each way.
You can fly on Brussels between JFK and Brussels for just 44K miles in business class.
Awards on El Al are much pricier, as that chart was just created this week.
I’d assume that the new chart launching on March 10th will remove all the sweet spots and use a distance based chart that is applicable to all airlines. Perhaps it will just be the new El Al distance based chart applied for all partner airlines?
But the clock is ticking if you want to book one of Etihad’s current partner award sweet spots.
Want to earn Etihad miles?
- You can transfer AMEX, Capital One, or Citi points to Etihad instantly at a 1:1 ratio or Marriott points at a 60K:25K ratio.
AMEX cards with transferable Membership Rewards points include:
- AMEX Blue Business Plus
- AMEX Platinum Business
- AMEX Gold Business Card
- AMEX Platinum Consumer Card
- AMEX Gold Consumer Card
- AMEX Green Consumer Card
- AMEX Everyday Preferred Consumer Card
- AMEX Everyday Consumer Card
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:
- Capital One Venture X Card: Earn 75,000 bonus miles for spending $4,000 in 3 months, plus earn 2 miles per dollar spent, $300 annual travel credit, 10K anniversary bonus miles, Global Entry/Pre-Check, Capital One lounge access, Priority Pass Lounge membership, and more. Read more here.
- Capital One Venture: Earn 75,000 bonus miles for spending $4,000 in 3 months, plus 2 miles per dollar spent. Read more here.
- Capital One Spark Miles: Earn 50,000 bonus miles, plus 2 miles per dollar spent.
- Capital One Spark Cash Plus Card: Earn up to 100,000 bonus miles, plus 2 miles per dollar spent, convertible into transferrable miles with any of the 3 cards above. Read more here.
Marriott cards with transferable points include:
- Chase Marriott Bonvoy Boundless Consumer Card
- Marriott Bonvoy Business® American Express® Card
- Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant™ American Express®Card
- Marriott Bonvoy Bold Card
Will you book travel with Etihad points before March 8th?
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10 Comments On "[New Devalued Chart Released] Final Weeks To Book Lucrative Partner Airlines Awards With Etihad Miles Before New “Simplified Redemption Table” Goes Into Effect"
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Brussels and Maroc are impossible to book. After finding dates and booking, a few days later Etihad would call me and say that the other airline cancelled. This happened 4 times with Brussels and 3 times with Maroc, I’d even receive a confirmation email, then cancelled. I have 176k rotting in Etihad. Reddit revealed that no one has booked one of these in years, at least not what I’ve read.
That plane flying through a warzone?
What is their refund policy on award tickets?
$27 for date changes.
10% of the miles penalty for cancellations.
Can’t book for Morocco ever. I look for the full year. Very very limited program. Offers with 0 availability
Can’t find more than one j seat per flight on any date on morac
25k AA F transcon with Chelsea JFK lounge status has been the best and easiest to book deal for etihad miles. A third of the flights release inventory 2 days out. Will miss it, no other way to book cheaper.
Do NOT transfer points to Etihad to book El Al yet. Their whole award chart for El Al has phantom availability. Wasted 3 days booking awards only to have them cancelled because there was actually no availability. Had 480k Etihad points stuck in the account and thankfully Amex reversed the point transfer today. Etihad customer service is extremely incompetent
wow, I wonder if the actual availability is like Qantas however they are displaying the availability that elal keeps for the matmid program and that is the reason why the bookings get canceled
Royal air Maroc is impossible to book even one year out every single day. It s just wishful redemption board