This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.

This is an installment in my Istanbul: End of Year Mileage Run with Dad series. Posts include; Cheap Istanbul Flights: From $576 Total Roundtrip on Delta from JFKHelp Plan My Long Weekend in IstanbulFlight Review: Alitalia JFK-Rome in CoachHotel Review: Westin Excelsior RomeHotel Review: Park Hyatt Istanbul Spa RoomIstanbul Eats and Excursions.

Delta just loaded a bunch of relatively cheap fares from NYC to Istanbul including $576 total for non-stop JFK-IST. Coincidentally my Dad emailed me that he needed to do a mileage run to retain his Delta Gold status (it runs in the family) so I just booked us a 5 day trip that includes a 23 hour layover in Rome on the outbound and 23 hour layover in Amsterdam on the return that cost us $594 total.

While I’ve sworn off coach international travel more than once before in my life (I’m not being a snob, it’s just not enjoyable as a 6’7″ man), I’ve never been to Istanbul and my Dad has never been to Rome or Amsterdam and this will be a great chance to spend some quality time with him. I’ve been so busy and on the road a lot, I’ll take any time with my family – even if it means travel in steerage! Even though it’s not a pure mileage run because we are making a mini-vacation out of it, I think it’s still a great deal – especially since it’ll mean I 100% lock-in my Diamond status until February 2013.

To search for fares, just go to -> Planning Tools -> Book a flight -> JFK-IST and then check the “Flexible Dates” box and select Flexible weekends or +/- 3 day search (these fares are only good if you have a Saturday night stay).

Flexible weekend search calendar

As mentioned, I ended up choosing routing through Rome/Amsterdam and it showed $613, but when I clicked through to check-out it dropped to $594. Not the best deal ever for 10,000 elite miles, but I personally can’t put a mileage value on being able to travel and spend time with the guy I look up to most in life.

Bizarre to see an airline change in your favor
Gold Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express

If you are a Delta flyer who is looking to bank some extra miles this card is a great addition for your wallet. While you'll earn 2 miles per dollar on Delta purchases and 1 mile per dollar on everything else, you'll also have access to other perks like priority boarding, a first bag checked free and 20% off in-flight purchases.

Apply Now
More Things to Know
  • Earn 30,000 bonus miles after you make $1,000 in purchases on your new Card within your first 3 months and a $50 statement credit after you make a Delta purchase with your new Card within your first 3 months.
  • Earn 2 Miles per dollar spent on purchases made directly with Delta. Earn 1 mile for every dollar spent on all other eligible purchases.
  • Check your first bag free on every Delta flight - that's a savings of up to $200 per round trip for a family of four.
  • Settle in sooner with Priority Boarding.
  • Enjoy a $0 introductory annual fee for the first year, then $95.
  • Terms and Conditions apply.
  • See Rates & Fees
Intro APR on Purchases
Regular APR
16.24%-25.24% Variable
Annual Fee
$0 intro annual fee for the first year, then $95
Balance Transfer Fee
See Terms
Recommended Credit
Excellent Credit
Terms and restrictions apply. See rates & fees.

Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser’s responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.