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If you’re unfamiliar with ExpertFlyer, you might want to get acquainted — especially if you’re loyal to SkyTeam. ExpertFlyer is a online service that — in addition to a long list of other features — can help you find award availability and/or notify you when award availability opens up.
Historically, there have been some limitations to the site, but it seems ExpertFlyer has been working hard to add more and more functionality. Last year, the service was able to work with Delta to re-establish Delta award availability coverage. Now, the site’s just announced that it has 100% coverage of all SkyTeam airlines. According to the announcement:
The following SkyTeam airlines have been added or improved for award searching via the Award & Upgrade search tool:
- Korean Air (Now supports all routes)
- China Airlines
- Mandarin Airlines
- Vietnam Airlines
- MEA Middle East Airlines
- Aerolineas Argentinas
- Garuda Indonesia
- TAROM – Romanian Air
This 100% SkyTeam coverage is especially helpful for SkyTeam partners whose award availability doesn’t show up on Delta’s own website. These airlines include:
- Air Europa (UX)
- Czech Airlines (OK)
- Kenya Airways (KQ)
- Tarom (RO)
- Xiamen (MF)
Here are two examples of how ExpertFlyer can help you snag an award flight:
While you may want to avoid flying Air Europa transatlantic (currently flying from Las Vegas, Miami and New York), the carrier’s European coverage could help you complete a SkyTeam award into a smaller city.
Looking for a Thanksgiving getaway to Lanzarote, Spain (ACE)? Even if you can find saver award availability for the transatlantic flight, Delta’s website is still going to error out if you search for flights to Lanzarote (ACE):
Now that you have this information, you can call Delta and feed them this information to book an award ticket on these flights.
Say you want to try out Garuda Indonesia’s 777 business class from Bali (DPS) to Tokyo (NRT) for yourself. For Garuda Indonesia, you can easily search award availability on Delta.com. For example, availability is wide open next April:
However, if you want to fly this holiday season, there’s not much availability:
This is where ExpertFlyer‘s flight alerts can come in handy. Once you search for an award flight that you want, just click on the exclamation point next to the flight to set up an award availability alert:
You’ll get an email if ExpertFlyer finds any award availability on that flight. When you get this alert, make sure to rush over to Delta’s website to book the flight before it’s scooped up by someone else.
Featured image courtesy of SkyTeam.
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