Cheap Flights to Istanbul on Delta and United- From $525 Total from NYC

by on May 31, 2012 · 33 comments

in Delta, Mileage Runs, United

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Last November I jumped on a Delta fare sale to Istanbul, which came to $576 total from JFK to Istanbul, building in stops in Rome and Amsterdam. In total I banked over 10,000 valuable Medallion Qualifying Miles. Flights to Istanbul are on sale again – and this time it’s for travel in from October 20 through December 10 and the price comes in even cheaper at $525. I played around and made a few mock bookings on both Delta and United to see what I could find.

$524.90 a/i for JFK-IST on Delta.

I found Delta had flights for $525 roundtrip for NYC-IST non-stop or you could add in a stopover in Paris (CDG), Rome (FCO), or Amsterdam (AMS) and just pay the extra tax – so really a great deal. Update: It looks like only layovers less than 24 hours are allowed in these cities.

While I keep swearing how I will never fly coach internationally again (I’m not being a snob, it’s just not enjoyable as a 6’7″ man), when I find a great deal it’s sometimes very hard to pass up. While these aren’t upgradeable, Platinum and Diamond Medallions will at least be able to advantage of free Economy Comfort (discounted for Gold and Silver) which Delta has on its entire international fleet and will be on all its domestic aircraft by June 7 as well. If you haven’t been to Istanbul or are looking to rack up an easy 10,000 Elite Qualifying Miles, this is something to consider.

Also available on United EWR-IST for under $525

I had a fantastic time when I went to Istanbul so I highly recommend visiting at some point, even if you decide this fare isn’t for you.

Be sure to check out some recommendations on what to do in Istanbul and where to stay in our previous Destination of the Week: Istanbul post. You can also read my hotel review of the Park Hyatt Istanbul from my trip last year.

Use your 2 free Hyatt Nights at the Park Hyatt Istanbul

Hat tip TPG Twitterer @TheDJK! If you don’t follow me on Twitter already, join the fun here.

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.

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  • Scott in Dallas

    Here’s hoping for a oneworld match! Why do you think they annually discount these fares, TPG?

  • Mmj_lee

    i’m not seeing this on for Dec. Its coming up as over 2k. on ita its about 900 bucks. Am i doing it wrong?

  • Tao

    How to add stopovers and keep the total price close to $500+ on Delta? It priced out to be $1500+ when I add in stopovers.

  • Lauren

    Thanks! I saw EWR > IST on United came up as $599 for October – so tempting!

  • The Points Guy

    Try going through this link, it should have a calendar matrix of the dates the sale fares are available.

  • Matt Langdon

    Does this kind of sale tend to have a posted end date? How long do I have to work out whether I should buy?

  • Tao

    Is there a problem with booking KL flights intra Europe? it always gives this error message saying that service not available. I am trying to book AMS-FCO, is it not allowed online?

  • TPG Intern Ryan

    No one knows how long these will last. You have 24 hours to cancel any fare so if interested, buy now and then think about it.

  • TPG Intern Ryan

    Try using the the “My Dates are Flexible” on and then it will display a calendar of available dates and the prices.

  • New Frequent Traveler

    I’ve been looking into booking a trip to Athens and Istanbul for a Fall trip so this came at a perfect time! But how do you add stopovers? I thought those were only possible when booking award tickets.

  • Jess

    Wow, impulse purchase for a trip in November just made — thanks!

  • Matt Langdon

    Thanks a bunch.

  • James W

    United has ORD to IST for $568.90 all-in for November/early December

  • mark

    capacity > demand

  • TPG Intern Ryan

    Looks like only layovers less than 24 hrs are allowed-thanks for letting us know, we’ll update.

  • Rob H

    Booked DCA-IST on UA. Thanks!

  • Matt C.

    It appears that a lot of the cheap United fares are for Lufthansa and do not count towards Premier Qualifying (shows as 0%). Turkish airlines shows 100% around the $836 mark on the fare I priced.

  • Maxim

    My 2012 New Year resolution was not to fly in economy unless absolutely have to. This is incredibly tempting: both 10k MQM and checking out Istanbul.

  • Alan

    This site is fantastic. I’ve only belonged for a few days but I’ve learned so much already.

  • tassojunior

    Playing around with Turkish I found some interesting fares to Dublin and a couple western European cities from IAD cheap with a free stopover connection in Istanbul.

  • David

    This also works out of DCA/IAD, with dates available in late October-November for roughly $600 all in. I did DCA-JFK-IST-AMS (STOP)-IAD for $612 all-in. WOOT!


    Looks like there are some dates from ORD-CDG-IST also for $605 all-in for us in the MidWest. Hummm……

  • Ram Kashyap

    Welcome Alan. TPG is really fantastic. You will soon become a big fan like me.

  • Ram Kashyap

    Set the travel dates from 10/21 – 10/29 from EWR-IST and the pricing is 565$ All Inclusive.
    Do not forget to go through for an additional 7$ off.

  • Debbie Schroeder

    I had hoped American would match but as of this morning, still no. But they did drop their rates from what they had posted yesterday. :)

    For us on the West Coast, I’m finding $756 LAX-IST on United; $1021 LAX-IST on American. And with American, the fares are upgradeable so that $1021 with a couple of SWUs can be in Business Class! :)

  • Loves Holiday

    Love this site! Sigh, just returned from IST on SUNDAY (booked 3 weeks before travel, Turkish Airlines for $655). For those who haven’t been, Turkey is amazing; highest recommendations.

  • AlanS

    Love this one… picked up tickets for my wife an I. EWR to IST nonstop for $525 in early November.

  • Bob

    For Thanksgiving, our family will be in Turkey instead of the Turkey being in us! (With almost a day in Zurich on the way home.) $550 each EWR-IST and IST-ZRH-EWR for 4 people.


    (Matt C. – My IST-ZRH flight on Swiss Airlines is currently showing 0 miles on my reservation, not just 0 premier miles.)

  • Bob

    checked again… my SWISS flight is “K” class, which means no award or EQM for that segment.

  • Hcry

    Sorry this thank you is late … going ORD-EWR-IST for $569 in October. Hope to see a lot of great tennis at the WTA year end championship there. It wouldn’t have happened without this post!!!!!

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