Round trip to Rome, Milan, Athens from $306 or 38,500 miles on United, Emirates and more
Update: Some offers mentioned below are no longer available. View the current offers here.
If you've been hoping to check Greece and Italy off of your bucket list, there's no better time than the present. According to Google Flights, these fares are at least $200 cheaper than the typical off-peak pricing. But act quickly: Many of these fares are set to increase in the next 10 hours, according to the Google Flights pricing predictor.
These flights are available from both the East and West Coasts as well as major airports in the Midwest.
Flights to Rome begin at just $307 round trip on SkyTeam's Delta and Air France/KLM, or $309 round trip on Star Alliance carriers such as United and Air Canada. Or visit Milan or Athens from $409 round trip on the famous Emirates fifth freedom routes, where even economy class is quite plush. The cheapest routes are on Norwegian, and start at $306 round trip out of New York.
Spring is a lovely time to visit both countries — the weather is inviting, and peak tourist season doesn't begin until mid- to late May.
Note that, while the award flight rates are a steal compared to United's former fixed rates of 30,000 miles one way to Europe, you'll find a better deal paying cash at these $300 fare prices, based on our monthly valuations.
Some of these fares may book into basic economy, which means different things to different airlines, but often means you may not have free use of the overhead bins for a carry-on bag. You probably also won't be able to select your seat, get an upgrade, or earn PQM/PQS/PQDs. However, it’s possible to defeat many of basic economy’s negative aspects by having elite status or a cobranded credit card.
To find a deal, head to Google Flights and enter your origin and destination cities. Scroll through the calendar function to find dates and prices that work for you. Finally, click through to book directly with the airline or an OTA like Orbitz or Expedia.
Airline: Norwegian, United, Emirates, Air Canada, KLM, Air France,
Routes: JFK/EWR/ORD/LAX/SFO and more to FCO/MXP/ATH
Cost: from $306 round trip
Dates: February — April 2020
Pay With: The Platinum Card® from American Express (5x on airfare booked directly with the airline), Citi Prestige® Card (5x on airfare), Citi Premier® Card, Chase Sapphire Reserve (3x on airfare), American Express® Gold Card (3x on airfare when booked directly with the airline) or Chase Sapphire Preferred Card (2x on travel)
The information for the Citi Prestige Card has been collected independently by The Points Guy. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.
Here are some examples of specific flights that are available:
New York (EWR) to Rome (FCO) round trip nonstop on United for 38,500 MileagePlus miles and $68.25:
New York (JFK) to Rome (FCO) for $306 round trip on Air France in basic economy:
New York (JFK) to Rome (FCO) for $316 round trip on American in basic economy:
San Francisco (SFO) to Rome (FCO) for $327 round trip on Delta/Alitalia via KLM in basic economy:
Chicago (ORD) to Rome (FCO) for $327 round trip on KLM in basic economy:
New York (JFK) to Milan (MXP) round trip nonstop on Emirates for $409 via Expedia:
Chicago (ORD) to Milan (MXP) for $452 round trip on TAP Air Portugal:
Maximize your purchase
Don’t forget to use a credit card that earns additional points on airfare purchases, such as The Platinum Card® from American Express (5x on flights booked directly with airlines or American Express Travel), Chase Sapphire Reserve, American Express® Gold Card, Citi Premier® Card, Citi Prestige Card (5x on airfare) or the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card (2x on all travel purchases). Check out this guide for more on maximizing airfare purchases.