American is tight-fisted with award availability on its own flights. Getting to Europe with American miles is tough without coming out of pocket big money paying British Airways extortionate fuel surcharges. The other usual options are Iberia (pretty good business class availability for 2 passengers booked a year out most of the time) and air berlin (with the hope that the airline is still around by the time you travel).
However there’s another route that almost no one thinks about, because it’s flying an airline that’s a partner but not a member of oneworld and availability isn’t shown on the AA.com website.
Indian-based carrier Jet Airways has been a partner of American AAdvantage for years. They fly between North America and India via Amsterdam which means they offer awards to Europe.
Their space was tough to search for, but since they’ve recently partnered up with Delta and Delta does a good job showing most partner award space on its website that’s changed.
- Jet Airways has fantastic business class award space Toronto – Amsterdam
- You can book this space with American AAdvantage or Delta miles (or transfer Citibank points to Etihad Guest)
- Search Delta.com for the space, and if you’re using American miles call AAdvantage to book.
Availability is out of this world good. Here are calendars showing dates where (4) business class award seats are open:
Availability looks the same in the opposite direction — Amsterdam to Toronto — as well.
I’ve only flown the Jet Airways 777 business class product when Thai Airways had leased their equipment.
However it’s 1-2-1 in a herringbone configuration, here’s a look at the product:
- Delta charges 70,000 miles each way.
- American charges 57,500 miles each way.
American doesn’t charge additional miles for connecting to Toronto — American serves Toronto from Dallas, Charlotte, Miami, Los Angeles, Chicago, Washington National, New York JFK, and New York LaGuardia. And may not cost additional miles for flights beyond Amsterdam, such as on Finnair, Iberia, or British Airways. (Delta shouldn’t charge additional miles, but sometimes does.)
You can hold an award with AAdvantage for 5 days without ticketing, and you don’t need to have miles in your account to do it. So you can lock in an award and then even buy miles with their current stackable offer if you need to.