Category Archives: SWISS

3 Things Everyone Should Know Before Purchasing Airfare Through an Online Travel Agency

Million Mile Secrets reader, Lynn, commented:

I purchased JetBlue airfare through Kayak’s Kiwi.com.  Will my checked baggage fees be the same as if I booked directly with the airline?

It doesn’t matter which site you use to purchase airfare.  Because the amount you’ll pay for things like checked baggage or cancellation charges is based on an airline’s published schedule of fees.

But there are other factors to consider when booking through an Online Travel Agency (OTA) like OrbitzExpedia, or Kiwi.com.

For example, depending on the airline, you might earn fewer miles on your flight if you don’t book directly.  Or you could accidentally book a “no-frills” Basic Economy fare without realizing.

Drawbacks Of Booking Airfare With An Online Travel Agency

Purchasing Airfare Through an Online Travel Agency Is Convenient. But There Are 3 Things You Should Know Before Booking This Way

I’ll explain what you should know before booking airfare through an online travel agency.

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Save Miles on Award Flights to South Africa Using AMEX & Starwood Points

Million Mile Secrets reader Aaron asked:

I have been looking to take the family to South Africa.  It appears ANA has the best mileage, but taxes and fees are terrible.  Do you have any thoughts?

Aaron is mostly correct.  ANA Mileage Club can save you tens of thousands of miles for flights to South Africa.  But it also adds fuel surcharges to most of its partners.

If you collect AMEX Membership Rewards or Starwood points, you can transfer them to ANA to book award flights.  Or move Marriott points to Starwood and then to ANA.

Using airline miles on award flights to South Africa is a great idea, because paid flights are expensive and rarely discounted.  But fuel surcharges can be very high.

ANA stopped collecting fuel surcharges on most of its own flights in Spring 2016, but it keeps adding them to most of its partners.

How To Book Award Flights To South Africa With ANA Miles

Planning a Trip to South Africa Like Million Mile Secrets Team Member Keith? You’ll Use Fewer Miles (but More Cash) Booking With ANA Miles

I’ll show you how to save miles and money, and pitfalls to avoid for award flights to South Africa.

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Sizzling Hot! Many US Cities to Europe ~$300 to ~$400 Round-Trip!

If you’ve been considering a European vacation, today is the day to book!

Via The Flight Deal, you can fly from many US cities to destinations like London, Paris, Amsterdam, Stockholm, Madrid, Milan, Rome, and more for ~$400 round-trip in coach on airlines like American Airlines and Delta.

And Frequent Miler reports even cheaper fares from the West Coast in the low $300 range!  Plus, if you’re an AARP member or have the Chase British Airways Visa Signature® Card, and can find flights on British Airways, you could save even more.

Travel dates vary, but some include spring and summer 2017 travel.  These are terrific deals for peak season to Europe!

Fare Sale US To Europe

Dreaming of a European Trip? Fly to Many Cities in Europe for ~$300 to ~$400 Round-Trip, Even for Spring and Summer Travel

Here are the details.  And how to search for deals from your city!

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Ultimate Guide to Big Travel With American Express Membership Rewards Points Part 8: India & Middle East

You get lots of travel flexibility with AMEX Membership Rewards points.  Because if you don’t have set travel plans for a future trip, these transferable points give you the option to choose from multiple airline partners when you’re ready to book.

Folks in the miles & points hobby know earning transferable points, like AMEX Membership Rewards points, are the best way to get Big Travel.  

The AMEX Membership Rewards program has 17 direct airline partners.  Plus, you’ll get access to other indirect partners as well, which gives you choices for flights to the India, which is one of my favorite travel destinations!

And you’ll have great options for travel to the Middle East too!

Or you can save time (and potentially points) by using AMEX Pay With Points to book flights through the Membership Rewards travel portal.

American Express Membership Rewards Points For Flights To Middle East

With AMEX Membership Rewards Points, You’ll Have Lots of Flight Options to India!

I’ll show you the best ways to use AMEX Membership Rewards Points for flights to India & the Middle East!

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Ultimate Guide to Big Travel With American Express Membership Rewards Points Part 7: Europe

You get lots of travel flexibility with AMEX Membership Rewards points.  Because if you don’t have set travel plans for a future trip, these transferable points give you the option to choose from multiple airline partners when you’re ready to book.

Folks in the miles & points hobby know earning transferable points, like AMEX Membership Rewards points, are the best way to get Big Travel.  

The AMEX Membership Rewards program has 17 direct airline partners.  Plus, you’ll get access to other indirect partners as well, which opens up lots of options for flights to the Europe!

Or you can keep it simple and use AMEX Pay With Points to book flights through the Membership Rewards travel portal and get a fixed amount per point.

American Express Membership Rewards Points For Flights To Europe

Use AMEX Membership Rewards Points to Travel to Wonderful European Destinations Like Cinque Terre, Italy

I’ll show you the best ways to use AMEX Membership Rewards Points for flights to Europe!

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Big Travel to Europe With This AMEX 100,000-Point Bonus

Update:   One or more card offers in this post are no longer available.  Check our Hot Deals for the latest offers. 

If you’re planning a trip to Europe, the fantastic 100,000-point sign-up bonus from The Business Platinum® Card from American Express OPEN offers lots of options for flights.

Depending on your European destination, the points you earn from the card’s sign-up bonus and minimum spending requirement can be more than enough for multiple round-trip award tickets.

You can transfer the American Express Membership Rewards points to terrific airline partners across all 3 major alliances like Air Canada, British Airways, and Delta.  Or for more flexibility, use AMEX Pay With Points, which can make your points effectively worth up to 2 cents each.

Remember, the AMEX Business Platinum 100,000-point sign-up bonus is only available for a limited time until January 25, 2017.

Use AMEX Points Flights To Europe

You Can Earn 100,000 AMEX Membership Rewards Points With the AMEX Business Platinum Sign-Up Bonus, Which Gives You Lots of Options for Flights to Europe

I’ll show you how to use AMEX Membership Rewards points from the Business Platinum for flights to Europe!

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What to Do With Points Scattered in Different Programs

Update:   One or more card offers in this post are no longer available.  Check our Hot Deals for the latest offers.

Million Mile Secrets reader, Joe, tweeted:

I was wondering what I should do with my rewards points.  I have 600 JetBlue points, 1,200 IHG points, 2,000 Delta miles, and 800 Virgin America miles.

Thanks for the question, Joe!

You can’t do much with a small amount of points in different loyalty programs.  But there are plenty of ways to quickly earn more rewards, so you can get Big Travel with Small Money.

What To Do With Points Scattered In Different Programs

Don’t Have Enough Miles & Points for a Free Trip? I’ll Show You How to Earn the Extra Rewards You Need!

I’ll help you quickly reach the number of miles & points you need for a well-deserved vacation! 🙂

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Award Ticket Change, Cancellation, and Hold Policies for 25+ Airlines!

Folks in the miles & points hobby are usually diligent about planning their travels.  But sometimes life happens and you have to change or cancel your plans.

In that case, what are the fees for changing an award ticket?  And do any airlines allow you to hold an award reservation while you firm up your plans?

To help y’all out, I made a chart that shows the award ticket fees and policies for over 25 domestic and international airlines!

Award Flight Change Fees

Tracking Down Award Ticket Fees Can Be Tricky, So We’ve Made an Easy Table Showing Award Ticket Change & Cancellation Fees for Over 25 Airlines!

Let’s take a look!

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New (Better!) Way to Use Starwood Points to Fly United Airlines

With the new way to transfer points between Starwood and Marriott accounts, folks can get a better ratio converting Starwood points to United Airlines miles by first transferring to Marriott points.

For example, if you transfer 10,000 Starwood points directly to United Airlines, you’ll only get 5,000 United Airlines miles because there’s a 2:1 ratio.

Instead, you could convert 10,000 Starwood points to 30,000 Marriott points (1:3 ratio).  Then, transfer the Marriott points to United Airlines and you’ll get a much better deal for your points.

Transfer Starwood Points To United Airlines

Now You Can Get a Better Ratio Converting Starwood Points to United Airlines Miles!

I’ll explain the math behind the points conversion and why United Airlines miles are great for Big Travel!

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Can You Save Time Booking ITA Matrix Itineraries With BookWithMatrix?

I’ve written that ITA Matrix is a powerful airfare search tool with many built-in options not available elsewhere.  It’s simple to perform basic searches, and you can filter results by airline, departure and arrival times, flight duration, number of stops, and more.

But there’s a big limitation – you can NOT book a ticket on ITA Matrix.  Once you find a fare, you must purchase your flight directly through the airline or with an online travel agency.

Now, there’s a way to quickly book ITA Matrix itineraries without hunting for the fare elsewhere.  BookWithMatrix finds the fare for you!  All you do is copy and paste the itinerary from the ITA Matrix search.

Can You Save Time Booking ITA Matrix Itineraries With BookWithMatrix

BookWithMatrix Saves Time and Aggravation Searching for Flight Itineraries You’ve Found on ITA Matrix

I’ll show you how to use BookWithMatrix and help you decide if it’s worth using!

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