WIDE OPEN: 8 or More Saver Business Class Award Seats To/From Europe With United Miles This Fall!

A couple of weeks ago a ton of phantom Swiss first class award space was showing up. This wasn’t bookable, at least unless you were a Miles & More elite member using Lufthansa/Swiss miles.

There was also a ton of phantom business class availability as well, though once you got to summer it was real.

Now there appears to be wide open business class Swiss award space for the fall that is real.

Reader brit44 writes,

Yesterday I ticketed 2 roundtrips from [Los Angeles to Zurich] on the direct Swiss flight via Aeroplan. 110,000 each plus $96 CAD.

Availability was for up to 8 people per flight. I still see 8 seats available on the outbound we are taking [in November].

United website shows extent of availability October through December which seem to be only months it is there for. Also some [Scandinavian] LA – Stockhold and LOT Polish inventory to WAW in business thrown in there.

I know a lot of this recently has been phantom inventory with Swiss and I have never seen 8 seats available. Also seems to work on direct SFO-ZRH.

You can book the space with miles in any Star Alliance program. My suggestion is always to search for the space using the Aeroplan website because what you see there will be bookable, it doesn’t tend to show phantom availability like United.com does.

You may not have any interest in Zurich (although consider it for a stopover — or ‘excursionist perk’ on a United Europe award) but you should have interest in these award seats either way. You can fly beyond to other destinations in Europe.

Book with:

  • United MileagePlus: 70,000 miles each way. Chase points transfer to United.
  • Aeroplan: 55,000 miles each way (although if you connect to ‘Europe 2’ the price goes to 57,500). American Express points transfer to Aeroplan, with no fuel surcharges added.
  • Avianca LifeMiles: 63,000 miles each way.

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community InsideFlyer.com, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. […] Saver Business Class Seats available to Europe:  Are you planning a trip to Europe this fall?  Have you been trying to search for business class seat availability but had zero luck?  Currently there is award space on Swiss Airlines business class to Europe.  If you have a stash of Aeroplan, United or Avianca miles and are wanting to go to Europe this fall, you should pounce on this opportunity! […]


  1. @Beachfan Austrian air is much better than Swiss! I thought the food was better and the seats. I really hate the seats on Swiss Air. Neither are my favorite business class config to Europe.

  2. Thanks! We booked flights for the fall. I saw some phantom availability with United, but found dates that worked with Aeroplan and was able to ticket through UA.

  3. Thanks, Gary! Heads up to those making Aeroplan award travel bookings — IF you have a child in your traveling party, do not designate them “Child” (Ages 2-11) while conducting the search. Why? Because once you’ve found the tickets and click on the “Book It” button, you will get an error message. Therefore, book ALL tickets for entire party as “Adults”. You will later get a chance to include everyone’s date of birth, and thus designate children in your party. I spent a full hour getting error messages, and I kept trying to change routing, thinking it was a routing issue. Finally, I called the help desk and they walked me through it. The rep told me it’s likely because the system believes it needs to collect lower taxes for the child, but that’s not the case in Award bookings. Happy travels!

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