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Airfare deals are typically only available on limited dates. We recommend that you use Google Flights to find dates to fly, then book through an online travel agency such as Orbitz, which allows you to cancel flights without penalty by 11pm Eastern Time within one day of booking. Remember: Fares may disappear quickly, so book right away and take advantage of Orbitz’s courtesy cancellation if you’re unable to travel. Additionally, keep in mind that discounted partner fares may not earn miles with US-based carriers.
Air New Zealand offers one of the most interesting fifth-freedom routes for US travelers, flying nonstop from Los Angeles to London every day. While typically not the most affordable option between those two cities, Air New Zealand’s flight is arguably one of the most comfortable. And through January 7, it’s on sale — promo code NYS200 will take $200 off economy fares, NYS400 will take $400 off premium economy and NYS600 will take $600 off lie-flat business class, on all of the airline’s ex-US flights through the end of November. With this deal, economy to London starts at $691 round-trip, while business class starts at $3,655, which is still quite competitive.
There are also some great fares available to the Cook Islands (a 10-hour trip from LA), but those flights only operate once a week and on one of the airline’s 767s, so you won’t have as comfortable of a ride. On that route, round-trip business-class fares start at just $1,697 — note that you’ll be traveling in a recliner seat rather than a lie-flat bed. Also, while all of these business-class fares earn 100% EQMs and 125% redeemable miles with United, none of the economy fares do.
Airlines: Air New Zealand
Routes: LAX to LHR, LAX to RAR
Cost: $691+ round-trip in economy, $1,697+ round-trip in business
Dates: January 2016 through November 2016
Elite Mileage Earning: At least 9,360 elite-qualifying miles
Fare Class: K or G (economy), J (business)
Booking Link: Air New Zealand
Pay With: American Express Premier Rewards Gold, Citi Prestige or Chase Sapphire Preferred
Here are some examples of what you can book:
Los Angeles (LAX) to London (LHR) for $691 in economy on Air New Zealand:
Los Angeles (LAX) to London (LHR) for $3,655 in business class on Air New Zealand (earns 10,880 EQMs):
Los Angeles (LAX) to Cook Islands (RAR) for $1,697 in business class on Air New Zealand (earns 9,360 EQMs):
Maximize Your Purchase
Remember, you can bank extra credit card points by using a card that offers a bonus on airfare purchases, like 3x on airfare with the American Express Premier Rewards Gold and Citi Prestige, or 2x on travel purchases with the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card. Check out this post for more on maximizing airfare purchases.
Be sure to act fast if you’re interested! Even after the introduction of the Chase Sapphire Reserve, the Chase Sapphire Preferred is still a fantastic choice if you want to avoid the Reserve’s $450 annual fee, earn 2x on all travel & dining and earn a 50,000 point sign up bonus.
Even after the introduction of the Chase Sapphire Reserve, the Chase Sapphire Preferred is still a fantastic choice if you want to avoid the Reserve’s $450 annual fee, earn 2x on all travel & dining and earn a 50,000 point sign up bonus.