Star Alliance business award availability wide open for second half of 2017 to almost everywhere

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One of the main reasons to be a United flyer is the perks that come with Star Alliance.  It’s just so easy to find availability to pretty much everywhere through United.  I wrote specifically about EVA’s awesome award availability to Asia through the end of 2017, but right now there’s wide open Star Alliance business award availability to almost everywhere!

Below are some samples that I pulled.  I still urge you to check on specific dates that show no premium availability as you might still find it.  United’s award calendar is a bit funky.  Hover over the images to see the respective routings.

For the sake of comparisons, let’s take a few of these routings and see the business saver availability among the three major alliances.  The routings were randomly chosen.  I’ll use United’s website to search for Star Alliance, Delta’s website to search for Sky Team, and American’s website to search for One World.  I’ll search from one of each airline’s major hubs.

Example #1 – ORD(UA)/ATL(DL)/DFW(AA) > JNB in September

United -> 90%  premium saver availability @ 80k miles one-way plus between $5.60 and $21.80 fees.

Delta -> 0% premium saver availability.  Lowest bookable award @ 325k miles one-way plus $5.60 fees.

American -> 4% premium saver availability @120k miles one-way plus $368.30 fees.

 

Example #2 – ORD(UA)/ATL(DL)/DFW(AA) > BKK in November

United -> 100%  premium saver availability @ 80k miles one-way plus $7 fees.

Delta -> 2% premium saver availability @ 80k miles one-way plus $34.90 fees.

American -> 0% premium saver availability.  No bookable premium award ticket.

 

Example #3 – ORD(UA)/ATL(DL)/DFW(AA) > BOM in December

United -> 70%  premium saver availability @ 80k miles one-way plus $9 fees.

Delta -> 45% premium saver availability @ 97.5k miles one-way plus $41.30 fees.

American -> 74% premium saver availability @70k miles one-way plus $521.80 fees.

 

Example #4 – ORD(UA)/ATL(DL)/DFW(AA) > SYD in August

United -> 12%  premium saver availability @ 80k miles one-way plus $37.90 fees.

Delta -> 0% premium saver availability.  Lowest bookable award @ 220k miles one-way plus $28.10 fees.

American -> 0% premium saver availability @175k miles one-way plus $368.30 fees.

 

By no means is this comparison an absolute truth.  I don’t intend to claim that Star Alliance is better for everyone, either.  There’s much more to think about when deciding which is the best airline alliance for you – perhaps a future post.  But in general, this is the way of things when it comes to award bookings.  Not everyone is an award booking expert or willing to pay for someone to book the award for you and find those complex routings that will yield a better value; and therein lies one of Star Alliance’s pros in comparison to the other two major alliances: it makes things easier for the regular customer to redeem their hard-earned miles.

Simply something to think about…

Give me your thoughts