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Flying Blue, the mileage program of SkyTeam partners Air France, KLM and Air Europa, offer Promo Awards each month, which let you book award flights for as little as 50% of the miles normally needed on certain routes and in specific cabins. While these awards used to be released every two months, Flying Blue now updates them each month. The list of awards you can book between December 1-January 31 for travel February 1-April 30 is now live on the Promo Awards page. Even though Air France is a Delta partner, you can’t book these awards with Delta SkyMiles.
The current list includes:
- Chicago to Europe on KLM: 50% off economy class — 12,500 miles each way, 25,000 miles round-trip; travel dates February 1-March 31.
- New York (JFK) to Europe on Air France: 50% off premium economy — 25,000 miles each way, 50,000 miles round-trip; travel dates February 1 – March 31.
- Atlanta to Europe on Air France: 50% off economy class – 25,000 miles each way, 50,000 miles round-trip; travel dates March 1-April 30.
- Houston to Europe on Air France: 25% off economy class – 18,750 miles each way, 37,500 miles round-trip; travel dates March 1-April 30.
- Montreal to Europe on Air France and KLM: 25% off economy class – 31,250 miles each way, 62,500 miles round-trip; travel dates March 1-April 30.
- Toronto to Europe on Air France and KLM: 50% off premium economy – 31,250 miles each way, 62,500 miles round-trip, travel dates March 1-April 30.
There’s decent availability in coach from Chicago to Paris for 12,500 miles each-way.
A coach award from Chicago to Paris in March would cost 25,000 miles plus 260.84 in taxes and fees. To book these same flights outright would cost $1,091.71, so the redemption option offers about 4 cents per mile in value, which is much greater than my most recent valuation of 1.3 cents apiece for Flying Blue miles.
Last year Flying Blue made some (mostly negative) changes to its award chart, including an increase in the cost of premium economy awards. That means the 50% discount for premium economy promo awards puts the cost pretty close to where it was before the devaluation. However, the added fees are now lower, so those awards are still worthwhile.
Stocking up on Flying Blue Miles
If you don’t have enough Flying Blue miles (or any at all), there are a few ways you can stock up on them relatively quickly. The program is an instant 1:1 transfer partner of Amex Membership Rewards, the program of cards like the Premier Rewards Gold Card and The Platinum Card from American Express.
Flying Blue is also a 1:1 transfer partner of Starwood Preferred Guest, which offers a 5,000-mile bonus on transfers of 20,000 points. So at the Promo Awards rate, you could book a round-trip economy award ticket to Europe for just 20,000 Starpoints. Just note that transfers can take a few days. The current sign-up bonus for the Starwood Preferred Guest Credit Card from American Express (and the business version, the Starwood Preferred Guest Business Credit Card from American Express) is 25,000 points when you spend $3,000, (personal card), and $5,000 (business card) in the first 3 months. Even if you never fly Air France/KLM, or if you bank your SkyTeam miles elsewhere, there are still plenty of options to top up your account quickly using points you might already have.
Do you plan to book any of these awards? Please share your thoughts and plans in the comments below. While this premium card has one of the highest annual fees on the market, it has several valuable perks that could make it worthwhile, depending on your travel patterns. These include a $200 annual airline rebate, lounge access, free Hilton Gold status and free Starwood Preferred Guest Gold status.
While this premium card has one of the highest annual fees on the market, it has several valuable perks that could make it worthwhile, depending on your travel patterns. These include a $200 annual airline rebate, lounge access, free Hilton Gold status and free Starwood Preferred Guest Gold status.