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Ah, Paris! Even in the dead of winter, the City of Lights shines brightly, so though the days may be gray, there’s still plenty to see and do in the French capital. US Airways is offering discounts of up to 20% off flights booked by January 8, 2013, for travel between January 28-February 28, 2013 when you use CDG20PCT at checkout at usairways.com. Just in time for Valentine’s Day.
Just note (as I’ll include in the terms and conditions below) that the discount is only available on roundtrip travel on US Airways-operated flights and only for non-refundable tickets that are not in Envoy class, so you’re pretty much stuck buying a regular old discounted coach ticket.
I found this itinerary from Phoenix to Paris right around Valentine’s Day – the lowest coach fare for each direction was about $507 – a 10% discount off the other options listed bringing the roundtrip total to about $1,030 all in. Not the best deal. On some other dates I checked, discount fares weren’t even available, and right around Valentine’s Day, the best I could find was around $975 from Philadelphia to Paris. But if you’re thinking of going for a quick winter trip to Paris and were planning on flying economy anyway, you might as well get a little discount.
Just as a point of reference, I checked out similar dates on Orbitz and the fare came to $1,090 instead, so you’d only be saving a total of 6% off everything – fare, taxes and fees.
However, remember that January 15-February 28 is also the off-peak period on US Airways for award travel between North America or Hawaii and Europe, so you can actually get a roundtrip economy ticket for just 35,000 miles or use 60,000 miles for an Envoy class ticket, though you’ll still have to pay taxes and fees on those.
A quick award search from Philadelphia to Paris in February shows that Envoy off-peak availability is pretty tight (if not non-existent) but there are still plenty of days with off-peak coach availability so you can get there and back for 35,000 miles and $137 in taxes.
If you were to convert Starwood Preferred Guest points to US Airways miles, you’d actually only need 30,000 of them for economy, or 50,000 for Envoy thanks to the 5,000-mile bonuses you earn per 20,000 points you convert.
So is it worth paying $1,030 or using 35,000 miles and paying $137? If you were to go the award route, your miles would be worth 2.55 cents each – not a bad value- especially if you purchased the miles during one of US Airways sales at 1.1-1.9 cents each.
If you’re looking for suggestions of what to do and where to stay in Paris, we actually covered it as our Destination of the Week last year for Valentine’s Day and TPG Managing Editor Eric wrote up two posts last May during his time in the city with recommendations for what to see and where to eat.
Per the T&C:
Up to 20% offer is valid for bookings made through January 28, 2013 for travel January 28 – February 28, 2013.
Must use eCertificate CDG20PCT to receive discount.
Discount is taken from the base fare and does not include surcharges and taxes.
eCertificate is not valid for Envoy tickets.
All segments must be operated by US Airways, and is not valid for itineraries involving other carriers.
Roundtrip purchase required.
Fares require a 7-day advance purchase, a three-night minimum stay and a 30-day maximum stay and tickets must be purchased within 24 hours of making the reservation.
Tickets are non-refundable; any changes to transatlantic flights originating in the U.S. will incur a minimum $250 fee.
Advertised fares are available on usairways.com. Additional surcharges/taxes/fees apply. Additional terms and conditions may apply. Checked bag fees may apply. Tickets purchased through Reservations incur a fee of $25 for domestic travel or $35 for international travel. Tickets purchased at US Airways ticket offices incur fees of $35 for domestic travel or $45 for international travel. Fares purchased through travel agents may incur additional fees. Seats are limited and may not be available on all flights. Fares are subject to availability and may change at any time.