TPG Readers’ Most Impressive Award Flights for the Fewest Miles
This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. Terms apply to the offers listed on this page. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.
We recently asked our TPG Lounge readers to share the most impressive award flights they’ve been able to score for the fewest miles. Here’s a look at some of our favorite answers. (Some responses have been lightly edited for style and clarity).
Epic Flights to Europe
When it comes to flights between the US and Europe, our TPG Lounge readers knew where to find the best award redemptions to suit their travel needs.
“600,000 miles for 10 round-trip tickets to Europe in steerage (i.e. economy) from Dallas-Fort Worth (DFW) to London-Heathrow (LHR) and London to Rome (FCO), with five people each way.” — Harrison S.
“30,000 United miles to fly from Bremen (BRE) to Munich (MUC) to Frankfurt (FRA) to San Jose (SJC) in economy on Lufthansa. Spent the whole day in Munich. Lufthansa was asking $3,800 for that leg.” — Jonathan K.
“34,000 to fly in business class from New York-JFK to Madrid (MAD) on Iberia. Possibly the best deal out there. Hope it lasts.” — Aaron R.
“24,000 SkyMiles to fly round-trip from Chicago-O’Hare (ORD) to Munich thanks to a TPG flash sale post!” — Maggie B.L.B.
“25,000 Avios on Iberia to fly from Chicago to Madrid in business.” — Norman C.
“10,000 Delta Skymiles for Columbia, SC (CAE) to London (LHR), then Paris (CDG) to CAE. The Amex rep found it by chance when fixing a flight change for me.” — Crystal D.C.
“60,000 miles to fly from Anchorage (ANC) to Athens (ATH) round-trip on United.” — Summer L.
Inspiring Trips to India and Asia
“70,000 American AAdvantage miles plus $15.60 in taxes for a QSuite on Qatar Airways from Dallas-Fort Worth to Doha (DOH) to New Delhi (DEL).” — Raghav B.
“15,000 Skywards miles for a first-class upgrade on Emirates from Dubai to Mumbai. It’s only a 3.5-hour flight but the cheapest shower at 35,000 feet I know so it was well worth the points.” — Vishvas S.
“10,000 Asia Miles from Hong Kong to Singapore (SIN) in economy one-way. The cash price can cost much more.” — Johnny Z.G.
“170,000 American AAdvantage miles for three business class saver one-way tickets from Ontario (ONT) to Tokyo-Narita (NRT) for Sept 2019.” — Jim F.
Adventures in Mexico, South America and Australia
Whether it’s a great deal to Mexico brought to you by the Southwest Companion Pass or an award flight to Australia, there’s no stopping our intrepid TPG Lounge readers from taking the trip of a lifetime for free with points and miles.
“3,086 Southwest Rapid Rewards points from St. Louis to Cancun one-way, plus my husband flew for free because I had a Companion Pass. I got a lot out of Southwest points combined with the Companion Pass last year and this year. We’re heading to Jamaica in November that way, too. Not sure what I’m going to do without it next year.” — Sam L.
“Two round-trip tickets for 140,000 miles from San Francisco (SFO) to Lima (LIM) in business class on Copa Airlines.” — Frédéric C.B.
“8,000 United miles on a flight from Quito (UIO) to Bogota (BOG).” — Hamza E.
Domestic Deals Worth Bragging About
From free trips to Hawaii to incredible experiences like seeing the Northern Lights in Alaska, our TPG Lounge members definitely earned some major bragging rights with these domestic flight award redemptions.
“19,000 Delta SkyMiles from Phoenix (PHX) to Fairbanks (FAI) in February of this year. Thanks to you, TPG, I saw the Northern Lights!” — Becky B.
“1,000 miles on JetBlue from Boston (BOS) to Orlando (MCO). Leaving Monday for a quick Disney trip to celebrate my daughter’s and my birthday. I was on vacation in Monterey and it popped up so I booked it instantly!” — Leanne B.
“5,048 Southwest Rapid Rewards points for Oakland (OAK) to Las Vegas (LAS) round-trip. I also got two one-way American Airlines first class saver flights from Fresno (FAT) to Orlando (MCO) for 50,000 miles total, then received 10% back so the net was 45,000 AAdvantage miles.” — Yuri H.
“I got tickets today for Denver (DEN) to Seattle (SEA) for 12,000 Delta SkyMiles in Comfort+ in December. Thanks for the head’s up, TPG!” — Brandon G.
“Boston to Aspen (ASE) round-trip in ski season for 15,000 Delta SkyMiles.” — Mark E.
“17,500 Delta SkyMiles for Washington-Dulles (IAH) to Salt Lake City (SLC) to Seattle just 12 hours before departure [with no last-minute booking fee]. The cash price would have been $505.” — Nick C.
“150,000 Virgin Atlantic Flying Club miles and $20 in taxes for two round-trip business-class tickets from Detroit (DTW) to Honolulu (HNL) on Delta One. Thanks TPG!” — Gordon L.
“5,000 Alaska Miles from San Francisco to Boise (BOI) with a five-day stopover in Seattle.” — Vlad Z.
“12,500 Avios from Los Angeles to Maui (OGG) on AA metal.” — Steve S.
Readers Helping Readers
We love it when our TPG Lounge readers get so involved in a given topic they start answering each other’s questions and lending their best advice based on personal experiences. That’s what happened when Ashley W.H. asked Peter H. to elaborate more on his recent ANA redemption via the American Express Membership Rewards program.
“90,000 Amex MR points for an ANA business-class round-trip flight from Los Angeles to Taipei (TSA), with a stopover in Tokyo. Also, 85,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points with a 30% bonus transfer to Virgin America for a first-class round-trip flight from Los Angeles to Tokyo (NRT). Not the lowest in miles this year but lowest for J and F class [overall].” — Peter H.
“I had no idea the Amex MR ANA bookings permitted a stopover. Was that an outlier you found?” — Ashley W.H.
“Works all the time! Just book the round-trip to your destination online — make sure you book it on ANA metal and not via Star Alliance — then call ANA to change the date. There may be a small increase in fuel charges (mine was $20). For example, I booked LAX – Tokyo-Haneda (HND) – TSA round-trip online, then called and asked to push back the date of HND-TSA for a few extra days in Tokyo. The return trip is the same. Of course the stopover flight has to be available for an award ticket. Cathay Pacific allows that via Hong Kong as well, using Alaska miles.” — Peter H.
“Thanks so much! We really enjoyed flying ANA to Japan. We’ve been searching for the best way to get to Australia, but assumed using ANA would require us to redeem Amex MRs for two separate itineraries.” — Ashley W.H.
“You can check and see how they price it. It’ll likely two segments but you never know. Good luck!” — Peter H.
Featured photo of Cancun by Federico Scotto / Getty Images.
Welcome to The Points Guy!
WELCOME OFFER: 80,000 Points
TPG'S BONUS VALUATION*: $1,650
CARD HIGHLIGHTS: 2X points on all travel and dining, points transferrable to over a dozen travel partners
*Bonus value is an estimated value calculated by TPG and not the card issuer. View our latest valuations here.
- Earn 80,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $1,000 when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. Plus earn up to $50 in statement credits towards grocery store purchases within your first year of account opening.
- Earn 2X points on dining including eligible delivery services, takeout and dining out and travel. Plus, earn 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
- Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. For example, 80,000 points are worth $1,000 toward travel.
- With Pay Yourself Back℠, your points are worth 25% more during the current offer when you redeem them for statement credits against existing purchases in select, rotating categories.
- Get unlimited deliveries with a $0 delivery fee and reduced service fees on eligible orders over $12 for a minimum of one year with DashPass, DoorDash's subscription service. Activate by 12/31/21.
- Count on Trip Cancellation/Interruption Insurance, Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver, Lost Luggage Insurance and more.
- Get up to $60 back on an eligible Peloton Digital or All-Access Membership through 12/31/2021, and get full access to their workout library through the Peloton app, including cardio, running, strength, yoga, and more. Take classes using a phone, tablet, or TV. No fitness equipment is required.