4 Tips for Buying Airline Tickets Using Award Miles

Do It the Right Way to Save Money and Hassles

Author: The Traveling Professor/Saturday, July 30, 2016/Categories: Travel Tips

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The Traveling Professor's tips for buying airline tickets with award miles are simple.  They save time, money, and hassles.

When to Buy:  Tickets become available as far as 330 days out.  The earlier the better for availability options.  However, more award tickets may become available within 30 days of a flight.         

Redeem Each Way Separately:   This is probably the most important, but least know tip for getting your airline tickets with award miles.  There is no penalty in terms of number of award miles used for redeeming tickets as one-way or R/T tickets.  However, if a R/T ticket is redeemed   and later on a change needs to be made on the return flight, both ways on the ticket needs to be re-issued and it is possible the outbound flight becomes unavailable as an award ticket.  However, if both tickets are issued separately, this will not be an issue.  Furthermore, it is easier to purchase the tickets separately if needing different classes of service (i.e., coach on the outbound, first-class on the return) on the trip.

Don’t Route an Award Trip Through London:  The airport taxes can almost be as much as purchasing the ticket outright.

Insurance:  Check your policy, but some credit card and other insurance policies do not cover trips obtained with award miles. However, you can usually buy insurance directly from the airline in this case.

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