Delta saver business class awards between US and Europe are supposed to cost 70,000 miles each way unless you’re using SkyMiles to fly on a Delta airlines partner in which case they charge extra miles.
At least that’s the theory. Delta charges what Delta wants to charge sometimes. But you can do something about it when you book.
Here’s Delta’s New York JFK – Rome flight in business class on Christmas Day. It’s available as a saver award (“O class”). And they want 100,000 SkyMiles. (HT: Joe Brancatelli)
If you book the very same flight New York JFK – Rome and add a connection on Alitalia the price for the whole itinerary drops to 86,000 SkyMiles. That’s still more than it should cost, but it’s fewer miles to take the same flight and add a flight. Consider booking both flights even if you just need to go to Rome. Throwaway ticketing is now a thing with Delta awards.
But remember this is a saver award, it’s available to Delta’s partners too — like Korean Air which charges 80,000 miles roundtrip for transatlantic business class plus fuel surcharges, and Air France KLM’s Flying Blue:
And of course American Express, Citibank, and Chase points all transfer to Flying Blue (and Chase also transfers to Korean Air).