The Ultimate Israel Mileage Award Chart

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This updated chart below attempts to break down some of the best options for getting to Israel with miles.

See all of the possibilities along with the mileage booking policies of mileage program from around the world after the jump:

There are 4 transferable point currencies:

-Starwood points can be earned from the Starwood Preferred Guest® Credit Card from American Express. 20,000 Starwood points generally transfer into 25,000 miles, though the transfer can take between 1-12 days. Some partners (like USAirways) do not care if you transfer to someone else’s account while others (like AA) are stricter. There are no transfer fees.

-American Express Membership Rewards points can be earned from consumer cards like The Amex EveryDay Credit Card from American Express , The Amex EveryDay Preferred Credit Card from American Express, the American Express® Premier Rewards Gold Card and The Platinum Card® from American Express.
Points generally transfer instantly (exceptions includes transfers to ANA and Singapore which can take a day or 2) and can be made to anyone over the phone. A fee applies for transfers to domestic carriers like Delta.

-Chase Ultimate Rewards points are earned from cards like Sapphire Preferred , Freedom Visa, Ink Plus, or Ink Cash.
You or your spouse need to have either a Sapphire Preferred or an Ink Plus to actually transfer points into miles. Points generally transfer instantly with no fees (transfers to Singapore can take up to a day). There are no transfer fees.

-Citi Thank You points require either a Citi ThankYou Premier, Citi Prestige, or Citi Chairman card to transfer points.  Transfer options are more limited than with the other point currencies. There are no transfer fees.
Tips for finding saver award availability:

Award tickets to Israel are always tough, though that’s a function of it being an expensive route to fly compared to the distance of the flight.
1. Check availability at least daily (if not more often) as award seats can come and go quickly.
2. Be willing to connect in Europe for much better availability. Flights on low cost carriers from Europe to Israel can also be dirt cheap and it can make sense to use miles to get to Europe and then buy a flight to Israel from there.
3. If you are ready to fly on a whim airlines often open up saver awards the day of or the day before a flight. Otherwise a month in advance is a typical sweet spot.
4. Realize that not all partners will be displayed online and you need to do your own research on partner sites and/or call to find partner availability. For example won’t show Iberia flights, won’t show Aer Lingus flights, won’t show Brussels flights, etc.
5. Airline search engines are only so powerful. Use free stopovers and open-jaws to your advantage. If you are flying from somewhere besides NYC just search from NYC-Tel Aviv instead of from Los Angeles to Tel Aviv. You can always piece together an award by searching for Los Angeles-NYC separately then NYC-Tel Aviv, especially if you are willing to have a long connection, change airports in NYC, or are willing to stay overnight in NYC.
6. The same goes for tickets from NYC. Search from other gateways like Toronto and Philadelphia and piece together the flights to get there afterward. For example be willing to use Avios to get to Toronto and then use United miles to fly from Toronto-Tel Aviv, etc. Consider searching from NYC to European cities and piece together an award from Europe to Israel. You may find availability from NYC to London and then from Paris to Tel Aviv but a computer would never put that open jaw ticket together. Instead you can check out London and Paris on the way to Tel Aviv. Maybe you’ll also get to check out Venice and Rome on the way home. Sometimes you can even save miles by doing that!
7. Don’t forget to book a free domestic trailing flight anytime in the year after you arrive back to your destination. United and USAirways still have free stopovers. You can fly NYC-Tel Aviv-NYC and then stopover in NYC for up to a year before continuing on to say, Anchorage, Los Angeles, or Miami for no extra miles.
8. Find award availability before transferring miles. Once they’re transferred they can’t be reversed!
9. Need help? You can post your travel dates and which miles you have in this DDF thread and ask for help. Consider offering a monetary or mileage reward to the forum member that can come up with the best award ticket to meet your needs and you may find that suggestions will come flooding in!
Airlines that fly nonstop from North America to Israel:
-Air Canada from Toronto (bookable via Star Alliance airlines)
-United from Newark (bookable via Star Alliance airlines)
-Delta from JFK (bookable via Skyteam airlines)
-El Al from Boston, JFK, Los Angeles, Newark, and Toronto. (bookable via El Al miles)
-USAirways from Philadelphia (bookable via OneWorld airlines)


Star Alliance:
Nonstop flights from North America include Air Canada from Toronto and United from Newark. These flights all have lie-flat business class seating and have no first class. Air Canada flies the 787 dreamliner to Israel with one of the best business classes between North America and Israel.

Star Alliance offers the best availability for flights to Israel by leaps and bounds. Besides for the nonstop flights from North America there are many options via Europe in coach, business, and first class worth looking into including Swiss via Zurich, Lufthansa via Dusseldorf, Frankfurt, and Munich, Brussels via Brussels, Austrian via Vienna, Turkish via Istanbul, SAS via Copenhagen, Singapore via Frankfurt, Aegean via Athens, LOT via Warsaw, or a mix of carriers like United from Newark to one of dozens of European cities and a European carrier to Tel Aviv.
By utilizing free stopovers and open jaws the possibilities are endless if you take the time to research your options leg by leg.

You can search for Star Alliance award availability on sites like and ANA also offers a powerful Star Alliance search tool though you’ll need to have 100 miles in your account to use their Star Alliance search. However if you perform an ANA-only search on a route they serve (like JFK-Tokyo) the site will then allow you to search Star Alliance airlines on different routes as well (just remember to click on connecting flights to expand the selection).

Oneworld has a nonstop option between North America and Israel on USAirways from Philadelphia to Tel Aviv. Other flights to Israel include Air Berlin via Berlin and Dusseldorf, BA via London, Iberia via Madrid, and Royal Jordanian via Amman. BA availability is good, but has high fuel surcharges.

You can check OneWorld availability on incomplete sites such as,, and (BA or Qantas frequent flyer account required)

Skyteam generally has the worst award availability. You can try searching some Skyteam availability on and Delta’s new search engine allows you to search one-way flights with a 5 week flexible calendar view and you can have it search nonstop only or for connecting flight. Options to Israel besides Delta’s nonstop JFK flight are on Czech via Prague, KLM via Amsterdam, Air France via Nice or Paris, Aeroflot via Moscow, and Alitalia via Rome.

Skyteam’s redeeming factor is that both Alitalia and Flying Blue consider Israel to be part of Europe, making travel there a bargain.  However both programs have draconian expiration policies, so transfer there only as needed.

El Al:
The American-El Al partnership ended last year, meaning the only good way to book travel on El Al is with El Al points as they are not part of any alliance.

You can check El Al availability on (Matmid account required), which is a candidate for the worst airline site out there.
Effective for travel booked on 02/10, award rates will go up. The chart below has the current rates for all members, the new rates for people who have made recent transfers, and the new rates for people who haven’t made recent transfer.

Additionally effective 02/10 El Al points from transfers and from flights will expire in 3 years, regardless of account activity.

El Al also tacks on $350 in fuel surcharges on taxes onto round-trip awards between North American and Tel Aviv.

Miles required are for round-trip travel. Close-in fees apply for tickets booked within 3 weeks of departure. Rates are for NYC-TLV unless stated otherwise.

Airline:Alliance, partners, fuel surcharges, and close-in policies.Miles required for Roundtrip:Notes:Transfer, change fees, and expiry policies:
ANAStar Alliance.

Fuel surcharges apply for most airlines except for United.

No close-in fee.
Coach: 65K

Biz: 104K

First: 195K
Round-trip required.

1 stopover allowed.

ANA has the lowest mileage rates without fuel surcharges for travel on United

Starwood 1K:1K or 20K:25K

Date change: Free.
Other changes: Not allowed.
Cancellation: 3,000 mile penalty.

Miles expire after 36 months regardless of activity.
Air CanadaStar Alliance.

Fuel surcharges apply on some airlines, see * below.

No close-in fee.
Coach: 80K

Biz: 165K

First: 230K
One-way allowed.

2 stopovers or 1 stopover and 1 open jaw allowed on a round-trip.

Infants cost just $50 in coach, $100 in business, and $125 in first.

Air Canada is the best AMEX transfer option for the Star Alliance airlines without a fuel surcharge.

Starwood 1K:1K or 20K:25K

Changes or cancellation: $90.

Cancellations aren't allowed within 21 days of departure but you can change to a flight outside of 21 days and then cancel.

Miles won't expire as long as you redeem or earn at least 1 mile every 12 months.
Air France/KLM Flying BlueSkyteam

Fuel surcharges apply for most airlines except Delta.

No close-in fee.
Coach promo: 25-37.5K

Coach: 50K

Biz promo: 62.5K-93.75K

Biz: 125K
One-way allowed.

1 stopover allowed on a round-trip

Lowest rates to Israel from any program during promo periods where a round-trip can cost as little as 25K, though fuel surcharges apply.
Best program for Delta travel thanks to low mileage rates, one-way awards, and no fuel surcharges.

Citi TY: 1K:1K

Starwood 1K:1K or 20K:25K

Changes or cancellation: $70.
Promo awards can't be changed/cancelled.

Miles expire after 20 months unless you fly on a paid mileage accruing Skyteam flight and credit the miles to Flying Blue.

Fuel surcharges apply.

No close-in fee.
Coach: 50K

Biz: 80K
Round-trip required.

1 stopover allowed.

Book awards during business hours in Italy to reach competent reps.

The 80K business award on Delta has $300 in fuel surcharges, but is still a bargain.

Starwood 1K:1K or 20K:25K

Date changes: Free.
Other changes: 5,000 mile or 55 Euro penalty.
Cancellation: Not allowed.

Miles expire whenever they feel like wiping everyone's balance off their books.

Fuel surcharges apply for flights on British Airways.

$75 close-in fee for non-elites.
Coach: 80K via Europe between 10/15-05/15.

Coach: 90K via Europe between 05/16-10/14.

Coach: 90K nonstop.

Biz: 135K

First: 180K
One-way allowed.

Stopovers are officially not allowed but can be had for free on flights to Tel Aviv. See ** below.
Starwood 1K:1K or 20K:25K

Date changes: Free.
Other changes: $150
Cancellation: $150 for 1 ticket, $25 for additional tickets cancelled at the same time.

Miles won't expire as long as you redeem or earn at least 1 mile every 18 months.
British AirwaysOneWorld, Aer Lingus

Fuel surcharges apply for most airlines, see *** below.

No close-in fee.
Coach: 56K on BA off-peak dates, 60K on Air Berlin (from JFK) and USAirways (from PHL), 65K on other carriers.

Biz: 140K on Air Berlin, 162.5K on BA off-peak dates, 180K on USAirways, 130K on other carriers.

First: 221K on BA off-peak dates, 260K on BA peak dates
One-way allowed.

Unlimited stopovers as each flight segment incurs an additional mileage charge.

Infant travel: Instead of cash, BA charges just 10% of the adult mileage required on international segments.

Best program for surcharge free travel on Air Berlin.

Chase UR: 1K:1K

Starwood 1K:1K or 20K:25K

Changes: $55
Cancellation: The lower of taxes paid or $55

Miles won't expire as long as you redeem or earn at least 1 mile every 36 months.

Fuel surcharges apply to select airlines.

No close-in fee.
Coach: 80K

Biz: 140K
One-way allowed.

Stopovers are officially not allowed

Best program for travel on other Skyteam carriers without fuel surcharges, but Flying Blue is better for Delta coach travel and Alitalia is better for Delta business travel.

Starwood 1K:1K or 20K:25K

Changes/Cancellation: $150

No changes or cancellations are allowed within 3 days of a flight.

Miles never expire.
El Al
These rates apply for people that have transferred at least 100 Matmid points (5,000 AMEX points) to El Al from non-Israeli cards within the past 12 months or have have an Israeli Fly Card.

Fuel surcharges apply on all flights.

No close-in fee.
AMEX MR rates:

Coach BOS, EWR, JFK, or YYZ in winter: 70K

Coach LAX in winter: 90K

Coach BOS, EWR, JFK, or YYZ in summer: 80K

Coach LAX in summer: 100K

Biz EWR, JFK, or YYZ: 200K

Biz LAX: 225K

First EWR or JFK: 325K

First LAX: 350K
One-way allowed.AMEX MR 1K:1K. See **** below.

Date change: $60
Other changes: $75 ($125 within 3 days).
Cancellation: $125

All points earned after 02/09 expire after 3 years regardless of activity.
El Al
These rates apply for members who don't have recent point transfers or an Israeli Fly Card.

Fuel surcharges apply on all flights.

No close-in fee.
AMEX MR rates:

Coach YYZ in winter: 80K

Coach BOS, EWR, or JFK in winter: 90K

Coach LAX in winter: 100K

Coach YYZ in summer: 90K

Coach BOS, EWR, or JFK in summer: 100K

Coach LAX in summer: 110K

Biz EWR, JFK, or YYZ: 225K

Biz LAX: 250K

First EWR or JFK: 350K

First LAX: 375K
One-way allowed.AMEX MR 1K:1K. See **** below.

Date change: $60
Other changes: $75 ($125 within 3 days).
Cancellation: $125

All points earned after 02/09 expire after 3 years regardless of activity.
JAL OneWorld

Fuel surcharges apply for most airlines.

No-close in fee.
Coach: 50K

Biz: 80K

First: 115K
One-way allowed.

2 stopovers allowed.

Very low OneWorld award rates, though fuel surcharges sting.
Starwood 1K:1K or 20K:25K

Date changes: Free.
Other changes/cancellations: ¥3,100 (About $26 USD) or 3,100 mile penalty.

Miles expire after 36 months regardless of activity.

No fuel surcharges.

No-close in fee.
Coach PHL-TLV: 100K kms (~53.3K SPG)

Biz PHL-TLV: 200K kms (~106.6K SPG)

Coach JFK-AMM-TLV: 112K (~59.7K SPG)

Biz JFK-AMM-TLV: 224K (~119.5K SPG)

Coach JFK-LHR-TLV: 154K (~82.1K SPG)

Biz JFK-LHR-TLV: 308K (~164.3K SPG)

First JFK-LHR-TLV: 385K (~205.3K SPG)
Round-trip required.

Unlimited stopovers as each flight segment incurs an additional mileage charge.

LAN is the only program with no fuel surcharges for BA flights.
Starwood 1K:1.5K or 20K:37.5K

Changes: $75 ($150 within 21 days)
Cancellation: $125 ($300 within 21 days)

Miles expire after 36 months unless you fly on a paid LAN flight.
LufthansaStar Alliance.

Fuel surcharges apply for most airlines.

No-close in fee.
Coach from US: 80K nonstop

Coach from US: 100K via Europe

Coach from Israel: 60K nonstop or via Europe.

Biz from US: 135K nonstop

Biz from US: 185K via Europe

Biz from Israel: 105K nonstop or via Europe.

First from US: 290K via Europe

First from Israel: 170K nonstop or via Europe.
One-way allowed.

2 stopovers and 2 open jaws allowed on a round-trip.

No infant charges except for airport departure tax.

Use Lufthansa miles for expanded Lufthansa and Swiss business and first class availability.

Discounted Israel rates require an Israeli address on the account.
Starwood 1K:1K or 20K:25K

Changes/Cancellation: $60

Miles expire after 36 months regardless of activity unless you actively use a Lufthansa credit card.
Singapore Star Alliance.

Fuel surcharges apply for most airlines except for United.

No-close in fee.
Coach: 75K

Biz: 115K

First: 150K
One-way allowed.

1 stopover allowed on a round-trip.

Use Singapore to book Singapore Suites and business class.

Awards on United are a real bargain and have low change/cancel fees.

Citi TY: 1K:1K

Chase UR: 1K:1K

Starwood 1K:1K or 20K:25K

Miles expire after 36 months regardless of activity.
Starwood 1K:1K or 20K:25K

Changes: $20
Cancellation: $30
UnitedStar Alliance.

No fuel surcharges.

$75 close-in fee, waived for United Club cardholders
Coach: 85K

Biz on United: 140K

Biz on partner airlines: 160K

First on United via Europe: 180K

First on partner airlines: 280K
One-way allowed.

1 stopover and 2 open-jaws allowed on a round-trip.

United cardholders get expanded saver and standard award availability.

Don't be afraid of trying a Plan B award.

Best program for Star Alliance travel without ever paying a fuel surcharge.
Chase UR 1K:1K

Date change more than 21 days in advance: $75.
Other changes: $100
Cancellation: $200

Miles won't expire as long as you redeem or earn at least 1 mile every 18 months.

*Air Canada charges a fuel surcharge to fly on Adria, Air Canada, ANA, Asiana, Austrian, LOT Polish, Lufthansa, TAP Portugal, and THAI. They do not charge a fuel surcharges if you fly on Aegean, Air China, Air India, Air New Zealand, Avianca, Brussels, COPA, Croatia, EVA, EgyptAir, Ethiopian, SAS, Singapore, South African, Swiss, Turkish, and United. Minimal fuel surcharges for LOT.

**British Airways does not charge a fuel surcharge when you fly on Aer Lingus, Air Berlin, Alaska, LAN, and TAM. There are also no fuel surcharges for American and USAirways flights within the western hemisphere, for JAL flights within Japan, and for Qantas flights within Australia. Fuel surcharges for intra-Europe flights are also typically quite low. Fuel surcharges for travel on Cathay Pacific aren’t too bad while fuel surcharges to fly on British Airways border on the criminal.
You can also transfer BA Avios to Iberia to save on fuel surcharges on Iberia flights.

***While American got rid of stopovers on awards, due to quirky pricing you can still take AAdvantage of stopovers when flying to Israel.

A nonstop flight from Philadelphia to Tel Aviv or a flight that connects in Philadelphia to Tel Aviv is 45K AA miles each way all year round.

Winter: A flight from the US to Europe between 10/15-05/15 is just 20K each way and a flight from Europe to Tel Aviv is 20K year-round. So you can stopover for as long as you want in any European city, even on a one-way ticket, for just 40K in that timeframe.  Whether you just connect in Europe or whether you stopover for 6 months, you’ll save 5K miles each way over the 45K nonstop option in the wintertime.

Summer: A flight from the US to Europe between 05/16-10/14 is 30K each way and a flight from Europe to Tel Aviv is 20K year-round. So you can stopover for as long as you want in any European city, even on a one-way ticket, for 50K in that timeframe. That’s a 5K premium over just connecting in Europe for less than 24 hours or flying nonstop to Israel in the summertime.

****For simplification sake, all El Al rates in this chart have been multiplied by 50.  In the real world 1K AMEX MR converts into 20 El Al “points” and a ticket from JFK to TLV in coach is 1,400 “points”.  I’ve multiplied everything by 50 to make the numbers comparable to the miles used by every other airline in this chart. Frankly El Al ought to do the same.

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85 Comments On "The Ultimate Israel Mileage Award Chart"

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


Is it possible still to transfer American express to a other name account???


How much is ANA fuel surchage on AC? Not easy to find on their site

Dan's the Man

Dan, It’s posts like this that make you the MAN!


Is a trailing domestic ticket allowed when flying Delta TLV-JFK booked with flying blue points?


Dan, thank you for this! כתיבה וחתימה טובה לך, ולכל המשפחה


@dan in regards to #7 with the trailer flight. How do you book that? Clicking on multi city bookings?


If delta has bugs, what’s the best way to search for business availability?


+1 to dan being the man

Lazer Ungar

Dan thanks this is a great report i would like to ask is there anyway you can make the same report between NYC and Ukraine


Over the phone, yes.

Probably the same as on a paid flight.
You can look that up by searching for a paid flight on the ITA Matrix and looking at the fare breakdown.

@Dan’s the Man:


Thanks, you too!

Depends on the airline.
With some you can do it online with multi-city. With others you’d have to call.

You can also try the Air France site, but it’s buggy as well 🙁

@Lazer Ungar:
Unlikely, sorry!

But maybe I’d do Hawaii or Paris, or something if people want.


Amazing as always. Making the world a bit more accessible. Thanks!


American OneWorld, El Al.

Fuel surcharges apply for flights on British Airways.

$75 close-in fee for non-elites plus mandatory $35 phone fee even for flights that can’t be booked online like El Al. Coach: 80K via Europe between 10/15-05/15.

Coach: 90K via Europe between 05/16-10/14.

Coach: 90K nonstop.

Business: 135K

First: 180K One-way allowed.

I thought american does not fly to Israel?



They can book you on their partner OneWorld airlines or El Al.


7. Don’t forget to book a free domestic trailing flight anytime in the year after you arrive back to your destination. Delta, United, and USAirways will allow you to fly NYC-Tel Aviv-NYC and then stopover in NYC for up to a year before continuing on to say, Los Angeles, for no extra miles.

How exactly do we do this? is the trailing flight one way only?

I Can See for Miles

Dan, I’m Jewish — and yet I’ve come to loathe the surplus of Israel-travel-centric content on the blog. If you were writing a deal/travel blog for JTA, fine, that would make sense. But if this is meant to be a deal/travel blog for the general population, it’s waaaay too much. Are you writing for the Jewish population or EVERYONE?



Dan are you sure you can transfer AMEX points over phone to another name. I tried that maybe 6 months ago to Flying blue and they said no unless you are the primary card holder or authorized user. Did things change recently or is there a “trick”


@I Can See for Miles: are you kidding me?


@dan/anyone who knows,

I want to use thankyou points to transfer to airfrance and fly delta coach (50K rt without fuel surcharges) from jfk-tlv direct. 2 questions:

1) is availability impossible to come by? any tips?
2) i have an upcoming paid flight on delta i want to earn airfrance miles instead of delta miles – how do i change my ffn on the reservation?

many thanks

Miles Fresser

Dan, great post. write in #7 “Don’t forget to book a free domestic trailing flight”, seems that only applies if you didnt use already a stopover in europe. example: EWR-FRA-TLV-EWR, can’t have another continuation to LAX after EWR for one year. EWR_FRA_TLV_LAX will work though. 2. you write in Star Alliance “By utilizing free stopovers and open jaws the possibilities are endless if you take the time to research your options leg by leg.” But you cant book it for 85k around trip, only as separate legs (many ramifications), unless you call up and pay the fee, unless you went to the seminary and know how to get around the fee 🙂


Dan, Great post! you wrote for Singapore RT in Business-115K / First 150K. They fly JFK-FRA, so for FRA-TLV i would assume you can add an LH flight, are there any other options? also what are the fuel surcharges?


AC fuel charge on the dates i checked is $556. If that’s ANA’s charge it’s high
Thanks for posting!


With for example you can use multiple destinations to do that. Though it’ll be easier over the phone.

It’s only good for a one-way, so you would have to buy the one-way back home.

@I Can See for Miles:
If you loath it so much why keep visiting?


1. Search for saver dates on
2. Call Delta or give the number to an airport agent.

You can also book a suites flights using Singapore miles (57K+$200 JFK-FRA) and then use other miles to get to TLV.

Right, that’s why ANA is best for United.
And United is good for partners thanks to lack of fuel surcharges.


A lot of people can use a chart for Ukraine. Why do you have to hate on Uman?


Hi Dan when you write by aeroplan Cancellations aren’t allowed within 21 days of departure but you can change to a flight outside of 21 days and then cancel.
Can you advise if thats a full refund of miles or a one year credit that you need to use within the year?


Who said anything about hating?

Writing a post like this is a massive undertaking and making one for Ukraine just isn’t a priority.

Full refund. Though you’d be subject to 2 $90 penalties.

south west

Dan, my dad just signed up for the southwest card he likes the southwest airlines because they fly to where he needs to go like florida to chicago. I told him he might do better with a different card. What should I advise him to do?

David Barman

One note for couples or persons traveling as a pair. U.S. Airways flight is configured with seats 2-4-2 in Coach. So, if you get the outer seats, the two of you are together with NO third person.


I appreciate all the hard work you do and I understand that these charts take a lot of work but Uman is a place where thousands of yidden go every year and where every yid should go.


@south west:
May be better off with BA Avios.

And millions of Jews go to Israel every year and that’s probably where they should go more than they “should go” to Uman.

If I had unlimited time I’d love to do a chart like this for every city in the world. But that’s not going to happen.

At any rate considering that everyone goes to Uman on the exact same dates it would be pointless anyway as mileage seats are a limited resource. The best deal is probably using a Barclay Arrival card for a ticket booked in advance.

I Can See for Miles

Dan, I like the blog AS A WHOLE, which is why I read it. Please don’t be defensive. It’s just I sincerely don’t understand why you choose to overemphasize travel-to-Israel deals, and I find this aspect of your blog to be a turnoff. Yes, you’re Jewish (as am I). Some points/miles bloggers are Indian. Some are Russian. And still others are, well … you get the point. They don’t lean so heavily on how to fly to one specific destination, however. Many of your readers are Jewish. I would venture to guess more of them either aren’t Jewish or are Jewish but have an interest in visiting other destinations besides Israel. So I think I’m asking a valid question: It’s something, obviously, very important to you, but is it not too much of a focus for a general readership?


I dont have any immediate plans to travel to Israel, but i just wanted to post my comment just to let you know that this is a great article and will be extremely helpful when i firm up my travel plan to Israel. Great work, Dan. Kudos.


Thanks Dan for sharing your extensive knowledge on these matters. The point about Israeli address for Lufthansa (Miles & More) rewards may prove helpful. I better make sure to take care of my mileage for Swiss flights which didn’t qualify for United miles.


@Dan can you calibrate on Why a Barclay Arrival Card Would be the best choice Thanks


@I Can See for Miles: dude – all of Dan’s real FOLLOWER’s visit Israel – or at least want to. He’s just making it happen for more of them. Dan also posts a lot of baby junk? Don’t have a baby, skip em. Don’t need a memory stick (cause do people really buy them that frequently). Skip em… you get my drift.


Dan I’ve been learning from your blog all year and just now got free miles tickets to Israel for my family of 6 for next summer. Ata HaMelech!


Dan I have 2 accounts with Barclays/Lufthansa about 50k points in each but the fuel charges make it not worth using – they are a Star alliance partner, so is there a way to transfer the points out to United and then use them on a United based ticket?

south west



@I Can See for Miles: he has probably seen more feedback, bookings through his referral links, and publicity from posts about getting to Israel than everywhere else combined.


@Lazer: The Barclay’s Arrival card points can be used to pay the bill of a travel related expense. So buy your ticket, hotel, car rental with the Arrival card and use it’s points to pay off the charge.
Then you’re free to use any airline, hotel, car rental and get a bargain and then use points to pay off the bill.


@Musk: Depends on what you would want to use them for? you can book a ticket with Lufthansa points on a United flight in the US on business for only 17,500 points with no fuel charges.


How do you use Flying Blue with Delta points (or can someone link me to a post that explains that)?

Thanks for the breakdown.


Thanks, Dan. If you do focus on Paris, it would help me. I have a trip to book for next September. Can travel from Newark or Philly.

Also, like others, I am unsure how to do the trailing domestic flight thing.


@Dan: I am (sadly) a total novice when it comes to using points for travel, so thank you so much for this post! One question re: Delta’s FF plan. My husband has a Delta Amex and I have an Amex Premier Gold. Since Delta is changing its FF plan (and everyone is panning the new plan) my thought was to use up my husband’s miles, have him drop his Delta Amex and get into a better program. Is there a particular program you recommend or does it just make the most sense–and provide the most flexibility– to get another Amex Premier Gold?


Thank you dan great post
Any way to post as a word doc so can keep handy ?
Also UA said a stop over on rt no longer allowed n will be charged additional domestic miles
No benefit if combined w international
Asked several UA over phone
Are u aware?


where can I find availability from any AA European city to TLV?

From my experience, before chagim its nearly impossible

any tips?

3 tickets


Dan: I searched the website but haven’t been able to find a “getting to Israel with Chase UR points” post, similar to the post(s) you did about getting there with Starwood points. Have you done one and I’m missing it? If not, that would be a huge help if you ever had the time to do one. Thanks & gut gebenched yur!


When I called Lufthansa, they had very high taxes and surcharges to Israel in the summer. Is there a specific route I should be taking to avoid the surcharge? I tried various routes and direct with United and surcharges (or taxes) seem high to me. Also, if you put an Israeli address on the account, does that mean you are subject to VAT or anything else to be concerned about.


When calling British Airways for booking flight from NY to TLV via Berlin, they said the taxes or fees was $129. You wrote that it’s $91.74. Did it go up? Or did I do something wrong?


El Al is no longer affiliated with AA at all (or any other airline for that matter), so you can’t use AA miles for booking. They claim they will start some new airline relationships in 2015, but we’ll see. Similarly. you cannot earn miles for flying El Al on any program other than Matmid.


Is there a way to transfer US airways dividend miles to starwood points (or any other hotel points)?




Dan-this post is better than ever. Thanks!
Regarding the trailing domestic flight (one-year stopover): I already booked BOS-FRA-BOS on Lufthansa with United miles. Can I change the itinerary to add a trailing domestic flight, or are such changes even allowed to reward travel? Thanks.


Dan- if i want to fly on united, but only have United and UR points, is there anyway to transfer those points to ANA, to book w/ ANA?



Can you go a little more in depth on how to book star alliance through the United website? Just tried and not seeing anything


Hi Dan!

Any significant differences booking EX-TLV?


Do any airlines still allow the off-season rate round-trips that have only the first leg in the off-season period?


A change like that would set you back $100.


You’re searching for NYC-TLV and clicked on award travel?

Only on Lufthansa as shown in the post.

Those airlines price travel for each way, so you’d pay half of the peak and half of the off-peak rate.


Yes I only see United though


do all or most international flights from us to israel on business class have flat lie-down seats?


it would be awesome to see you give all the ins and outs on booking that free trailing domestic flight?


Does anyone know a good award ticket booking agent for israel? I have a bunch of points and this seems like a job for someone who does this frequently.


Hi dan!
if I just started with credit cards, does it hurt my credit score more when i apply for new ones now than later on in life? Because I pay in full every month but my credit score dropped 19 points after applying for one card…


First time I heard of trailing flights. do you have a previous post that describes the details of how to do this and the rules involved? (if you already have a stopover rome-toronto-ewr, can you still add another leg or just if it’s a direct home flight (london-ewr)? Do you have to add the trailing flight at original booking – if not, until when can you add it? if lets say you book it to miami form ewr and decide to change your plans, can you change that leg at a later time, before the scheduled last leg?
I’m going to europe this summer. flying direct to rome but home need to fly through toronto because no direct flights available, so I was wondering if I can take advantage of the trailing flight on my return (even though I have idea where I would use it for yet).


How do I book United via Singapore Air to Tel Aviv. On kris flyer there isn’t a listing available for Tel Aviv.


Another question-
I used aeroplan to book my flights to europe on united this summer because I had a lot of amex points . I only found out after transferring about aeroplan’s difficult rules such as $95/ for any changes (I had to change one flight I booked for a loner layover because I was worried the one I originally booked was too short and I wouldnt make it and I had to pay the $95 fee!) and their cancellation within 21 day rule as mentioned above. They told me that within 21 days, my only option was to book the exact same itinerary within 12 months from my original booking and I would have to pay the $95 change fee. Are you saying that if I need to do this and I reschedule for more that 21 days out I can then cancel at that point and the miles will go back to my account. I assume I would have to pay another change fee, thus costing each cancelled flight $190 for this cancellation?


Dan AWEsome work…can only imagine how much time this took to put together….so THANK you..M just fly in on Air Berlin…took a 24 hour stopover to visit where the Germans killed our people….and then on to Israel….makes you appreciate that much more. Got the Air Berlin idea from your site…and way back in Business onIberia. So Thanks


Dan! Just got an email from US Dividend card that they are waiving forigen transaction fees from now on!


Thanks Dan, great work!
which airline would allow stop in NY on the way back and then continue to HI?
I see miles – we like our blog the way it is. If you are looking for a different product, feel free to find it elsewhere
Dan, sorry you need to deal with such comments.


i found flights on US Airways for miles. how would i go about reserving them with BA Avios?




what about using avios miles to get back and forth to israel?


I don’t see Alaska on your chart. They have a few good options.


Thanks for an excellent post!

Can you add something that discusses the availability of award flights?


Dan is not a very good communicator or teacher; he knows what he knows and he is unable (like a good teacher) to understand what someone knew to the subject does not know.

Dan writes “Check availability at least daily (if not more often) as award seats can come and go quickly.” BUT DAN DOES NOT EXPLAIN HOW ONE CHECKS AVAILABILITY. Of course, Dan doubtless would say to himself, “Everyone knows that.” But, everyone does not know that. A good communicator,a good teacher, would understand that.

I appreciate that good teaching is an acquired skill and, probably, in the fullness of time, Dan will get better; for now, he is not very good.


@chip Yes, @Dans posts are not for entry level mileage/credit fiends. But to criticize his communication skills with a misspelled word in your tired rant is a travesty of justice and principal. He is a skilled blogger.



I am looking for flights to Jamaica May 13-17 from NYC. Is there an optimal /best way to get there using miles or just a different booking technique?

Thanks for your time.


You say in the chart above that it should be 85k for a round trip on United. When I go through the steps to make a reservation on the United website and I select my flights it is 85k each way for a total of 170k for the whole trip! What am I doing wrong? Thanks


You are choosing a standard reward, not a saaver reward


how hard is it to find availability for the alitalia 80k business rt rewards?


What right do you have to say such a thing!! Do you have any clue how many THOUSANDS of ppl have benefited from dans help and advice. Hes not able to answer every single question that every person new to this would ask, especially since these Q’s were probably asked a million times already and he cant keep answering again and again which is why he created his forums with threads that were specifically created to help noobies.


Is Korean Air an option?


you can still take AAdvantage of stopovers when flying to Israel.
Please explain


How do you search ba availability. they only seem to have flights to and from england on their website?


Why is this all crossed off??


Read the first line.