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Redeeming miles now, buying ticket later

Old Nov 27th, 2006, 07:10 PM
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Redeeming miles now, buying ticket later

DH and I are looking at a vacation in France next fall, and would fly LAX-CDG (with a stopover at ORD or JFK) on American Airlines. I looked it up and at this point it would cost ~$800 to outright purchase or 60,000 miles. I would like to cash in my miles and go ahead and book my ticket now.

Would it be detrimental to wait to purchase his ticket until prices came down a bit (for instance, earlier this year, I saw the same route going for ~$580 on American)? Or shoudl we buy the accompanying ticket now for fear of the flight selling out? (We're looking at travel late September - mid October next year.)

Thanks for your thoughts. I'm not much of a ticket diva!
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Old Nov 28th, 2006, 04:04 AM
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It is not necessarily detrimental to wait to purchase the ticket and the flight isn't likely to sell out this far ahead. That said, I would be leery of expecting a fare of under $600 to show up for LAX-CDG for that time period. Fares are just flat out higher now than they were earlier this year.

We just returned from Paris on a $621 r/t coach tickets from the midwest and while I felt bad about having to pay that much, it turned out to be the lowest priced opportunity for the itinerary in all of the time that I watched the route. We flew CDG r/t for $395 in January and I don't expect to see that kind of fare again. I guess what I'm saying is that $800 may not be a terrible price and your potential savings between now and next fall are probably not all that great (I would guess MAYBE $150 max, if you're lucky.)

Be sure to use the free ticket for the person who accumulates miles most slowly on the airline you're flying.
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Old Nov 28th, 2006, 04:37 AM
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Possibly a long shot, but you might ask American whether the fare rules on the purchased ticket will permit you to refare and get a voucher if the price goes down. I don't have any recent experience with AA, but I'm pretty sure I've seen others here mention being able to do this with international tickets. I did the same earlier this year with United. Bought tickets to Japan for $1300 each. About two months before travel, UA opened up lower fare buckets, and the same itinerary was pricing at $900. I got $400 vouchers; no fee involved--better than nothing.
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Old Nov 28th, 2006, 10:11 AM
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Checking on the AA site, it takes 40K points for Economy off-peak and 60K peak. Do you know that that time will be peak?

Also, you can see how the flight is selling by checking on the 'view seats'.
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Old Nov 28th, 2006, 12:27 PM
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Off Peak is OCT15-MAY1


AFAIK, AA still does fare rollback without any fees for international flights. If you see a lower fare for the same flight(s), just call and they will send you a voucher. But with that much time, the rules may change.

Good luck!
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Old Nov 28th, 2006, 06:51 PM
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You guys are the best! Thank you!

And actually, it gets better! I found out today that I have a firm work commitment until October 18, so we could go off peak. Yay!!!
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