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Update: Some offers mentioned below are no longer available. View the current offers here – Starwood Preferred Guest® Credit Card from American Express, Starwood Preferred Guest® Business Credit Card from American Express, Premier Rewards Gold Card from American Express
Flying Blue, the mileage program of SkyTeam partners Air France, KLM and Air Europa, offers discounted Promo Awards where you can book award flights for as much as 50% of the miles normally needed. The program recently started releasing a new set of Promo Awards on the first of every month (instead of every two months as it used to do), and the list of awards you can book between May 1 – May 31 for travel July 1 – August 31 is now up.
After a couple of months of pretty unexciting awards with just 25-50% off economy awards from most cities, it looks like business class promo awards of up to 50% off are back for summer! That makes sense since summer can be a slow time for business travel and there are some great discount fares as well as last-minute award space, but it’s nice to see Flying Blue offering some tempting business class promo awards again.
Even with the recent Flying Blue award chart devaluation, you can still snag awards for up to 50% fewer miles than SkyTeam partner Delta would charge you for the same awards, so it’s a significant discount and unlike Delta awards (for now) you can book Flying Blue awards one way, giving you extra flexibility. Also note that you’ll be paying about $235 in fuel surcharges each way on business class awards, so budget that in.
- Chicago on KLM: 50% off business class – 31,250 miles each way, 62,500 miles roundtrip
- Dallas on KLM: 50% off business class – 31,250 miles each way, 62,500 miles roundtrip
- Minneapolis on Air France: 25% off premium economy – 42,187 miles each way, 84,375 roundtrip
- Montreal on KLM: 25% off business class – 46,875 miles each way, 93,750 roundtrip
- Toronto on Air France: 25% off business class – 46,875 miles each way, 93,750 roundtrip
- Washington DC on Air France: 50% off business class – 31,250 miles each way, 62,500 miles roundtrip
I can’t show you award availability just yet since these awards don’t go live until tomorrow, but there generally tends to be a good amount of these discount awards available. At least, at first. I would get your summer plans in order today or tomorrow and book as soon as you can since the business class awards tend to be popular and disappear fast.
And for you #AVGeeks (aviation geeks) out there, KLM operates an MD11 on the Montreal-Amsterdam route, which is one of the last, if not the last of these aircraft it still has in service, and it won’t be around much longer, so this could be a fun little trip for bragging rights.
Maximizing These Awards
One of the things that makes Flying Blue and these awards in particular quite interesting is that “Europe” includes a lot of countries we don’t traditionally think of as part of the Continent. Here’s how Flying Blue classifies Europe:
Belgium, France, Germany, Ireland, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Switzerland, United Kingdom
Austria, Denmark, Finland, Italy, Malta, Norway, Portugal, Spain inc. Balearic Islands, Sweden
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.
Then within Europe, the following cities are offering discounted awards, so if you already have your big transatlantic ticket squared away but are looking for ways to get around the continent once you’re there, these could be good to keep in mind. Here are the cities:
Dusseldorf on Air France
Edinburgh on KLM
Kiev on Air France
Valencia on Air Europa
Oslo on KLM
Stockholm on KLM
Vienna on KLM
Zurich on Air France
Bordeaux-Marseilles and Bordeaux-Orly on Air France
Stocking up on Flying Blue Miles
Also keep in mind that Flying Blue is also an instant 1:1 transfer partner of American Express Membership Rewards, so if you have a card like the Premier Rewards Gold Card from American Express or Platinum, this promo could be a good value for using those Amex points especially if they run another 35% transfer bonus like they ran last May.
You could also transfer Starwood Preferred Guest points to Flying Blue, and get a 5,000-mile bonus on transfers of 20,000 miles. The current bonus on both the Starwood Preferred Guest Credit Card from American Express and the Starwood Preferred Guest Business Credit Card from American Express are 25,000 points when you spend $3,000 (personal card) and $5,000 (business card) in the first 3 months.
Do you plan to book any of these awards? Let us know what you manage to snag in the comments below!