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50,000 Miles Roundtrip Business Class from New York and Toronto To Europe with Flying Blue Promo Awards

by on February 14, 2013 · 16 comments

in Air France, Flying Blue

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The next round of Flying Blue 50%-off Promo Awards is out with some new awards priced out through April 30, 2013, including business class on Air France from both New York JFK and Toronto Pearson to Europe Zones 1, 2 and 3 for just 25,000 miles each way.

Fly to Europe for half the miles with Flying Blue Promo Awards.

Fly to Europe for half the miles with Flying Blue Promo Awards.

For those of you new to miles, Flying Blue is the frequent flyer program of SkyTeam partners Air France and KLM. Promo awards are 50% off normal award levels and run all year long, but the gateway cities generally change every two months on a rolling basis, and these awards include either business class and economy awards (though there have been mostly economy awards lately).

Using Promo Awards, you can  find award itineraries from North America to Europe and beyond for as low as 25,000 miles roundtrip in economy and 50,000 miles in business class on Air France, KLM and Air Europa. Each airline offers these discounts on different destinations and cabins. Promo award pricing is not available on Skyteam partners. So for example, you cannot book Delta flights at these reduced levels.

The other thing to keep in mind is that Flying Blue is an instant 1:1 transfer partner of American Express Membership Rewards, so this promo could be a great value for using those Amex points especially if you get in on a transfer bonus like the 35% transfer bonus they ran in September.

The one thing to be careful of is that Flying Blue charges hefty taxes on awards – even economy tickets can incur $400-$500 in taxes, so even though you find a promo award for 25,000 miles, it still might not be worth it. Especially if you can find that same ticket for $600-$700 and also accrue miles (award/promo tickets do not accrue miles).

The real value lies in finding promo awards on particularly expensive routes and on business class awards since you’re using a significantly smaller amount of miles and saving a lot more money on premium fares, even with steep taxes many times. Different carriers have different fuel surcharges to different cities (for example, flying into Paris and London will always be more expensive than just transiting through them), so below I list several examples which I pulled directly from airfrance.us, so price out your flight before you hop on this promotion.

As I mentioned, the North America section of the promo awards includes two new entries for the next two months:

This round of Flying Blue Promo Awards includes discounted business class to Europe from New York and Toronto.

This round of Flying Blue Promo Awards includes discounted business class to Europe from New York and Toronto.

New York JFK to Europe 1, 2, 3 in business class for awards on Air France booked between February 27 – April 28, 2013, for flights between March 1 – April 30, 2013.

Toronto Pearson (YYZ) to Europe 1, 2, 3 in business class for awards on Air France booked between February 27 – April 28, 2013, for flights between March 1 – April 30, 2013.

Also just for reference, here are the European zones and which countries they include:

Europe 1
Belgium, France, Germany, Ireland, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Switzerland, United Kingdom

Europe 2
Austria, Denmark, Finland, Italy, Malta, Norway, Portugal, Spain inc. Balearic Islands, Sweden

Europe 3
Albania, Algeria, Belarus, Bosnia-Herzogovina, Bulgaria, Canary Islands, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Estonia, Greece, Hungary, Israel, Latvia, Libya, Lithuania, Macedonia, Moldova, Morocco, Poland, Romania, Western Russia, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Turkey, Tunisia, Ukraine.

So if you’re based on the east coast, you might be able to take advantage of some really well-priced award tickets this spring to some pretty far-flung places.

You won’t be able to start booking any of these until February 27, so I can’t show you any actual promo award availability, but I did want to point out a couple routes to take a look at taxes and charges and give you an idea of how much these awards might cost you.

Let’s say you just wanted a standard New York to Paris business class roundtrip ticket for a long weekend in mid-April. That would cost you $3,940 in airfare plus $1,033 in taxes and fees for a total of $4,973.
This roundtrip JFK-CDG trip would be nearly $5,000!

This roundtrip JFK-CDG trip would be nearly $5,000!

If you could snag this as a Promo Award ticket, you’d still have to pay the $1,033 in taxes and fees but you’d only have to use 50,000 miles, getting a value of nearly 8 cents per mile.
To take another example, let’s say you wanted to fly roundtrip business class from Toronto to Istanbul (in Europe 3).
That would cost you $4,220 in airfare plus $973.50 in taxes and fees for a total of $5,193.50. Again, you’d still have to pay the taxes and fees on the ticket, but your 50,000 miles would be worth 8.44 cents each – a great value.
So while even at half-price these promo awards might not make sense for economy tickets where the taxes and fees can sometimes be even more than the airfare itself, with business class fares like these, if you don’t mind shelling out for the taxes at about $1,000 a ticket, you could save thousands more dollars by using miles – and do so at a substantial discount.

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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  • Jerry

    I believe Canadian AMEX MR does not have Flying Blue as a transfer partner, as listed here. It does have Alitalia and Delta
    so Toronto-Europe may not be so achievable for Canadians :(

    http://catalogue.membershiprewards.ca/l2Category.mtw?categoryName=ca_frequent_traveller_participants&parentCategoryName=ca_travel_1&newCategorySearch=true

  • http://www.facebook.com/jim.strong.3158 Jim Strong

    Yep, the Canadian Amex transfer partners are bleak to say the least. Only Aeroplan and BA are offered at a 1:1 ratio.

  • Urbanist

    The “Book Now” Option is not available on the promo site for the JFK or TOR business class option. Any ideas?

  • Choiklu

    with the constant fair sale from domestic and international carriers, business class to europe is very afordable in the 2k plus. this makes your calculation with miles seem unworthy. however the calculation is better applied during peak season like summer where fairs are sky high.

  • JBJ

    New here, but can I use Skymiles or trade? I have 390k skymiles and need 3 tickets from lax-agp in April…thanks. Platinum/Elite/Reserve w/Delta.

  • thepointsguy

    Unfortunately you can’t use Delta miles on these fares, but you have a lot of SkyMiles and should be able to use them on normal award tickets on Delta’s Skyteam partners like Air France, KLM and Air Europa.

  • thepointsguy

    The calculations are based on what the airfares actually are for the same itineraries.

  • thepointsguy

    That’s because you can’t book this set of promo awards until February 27.

  • JBJ

    thanks, but I only want Business Class…right now I can get to Madrid for 262k miles for 1 ticket!

  • Junblaze

    Deltas website is corky…Did you try searching one way economy and then use the calendar to search business class fares?

  • Janicebell

    Yes, I’ve tried multi-city, etc. It jumps around from 325k miles, down to 262k now, but no lower yet…and this doesn’t get me all the way to Malaga, but that flight is only $200 r/t booked on it’s own

  • Kadyruth

    Hello! When it says we can start booking on Feb 27–is that the 27th Paris time? East Coast time? Also would it be right at midnight? Thanks!

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  • BK

    Hi Dan,
    looking to travel from s fl to paris around may 22-29, hoping for bus class & direct flight. I have tons of am ex points, but they dont partner w AA. To transfer the points through SPG means I will lose a significant amount. What can I do? any promos to look out for?

  • Vmflyer

    Hi

    Do you know how long this promo will be around for?

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