I am looking to buy the promotional US Airway miles 100%, can anyone confirm there are no restrictions for Australians to use?

17 replies

airADL

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

Member since 25 Mar 2014

Total posts 195

I am looking to buy the promotional US Airway miles 100%, can anyone confirm there are no restrictions for Australians to use? Also what is the likely hood of getting two J class flights return to HK next year>> Thanks for yor help

RealKid

Member since 20 May 2014

Total posts 92

Hi ADL,

I use the buy miles option from US Airways frequently.  Some things to note:

1. You need a US Airways Dividend Miles account which was opened at least 12 days before the start of the promotion. Other than that there are no restrictions on Australians.

2. When you buy miles, there is a 7.5% tax on top of the $35/1000m fee.  All prices are quoted in USD, so take into account the exchange rate.

3. Your options to HKG are Cathay and Qantas.  Qantas releases the most award space at around 330 days in advance.  Cathay releases award space closer in to the date of departure.  I've had luck booking tickets to HKG on both carriers.  One thing to note, the Qantas website will sometimes show Cathay Pacific award availability which the US Airways reservation agents cannot see. 

4. Malaysia Airlines has very open award availability toward the later half of the year (I'm sure I can think of two reasons why).  This may be another good option of getting to HKG. 

5. US Airways agents are not great at finding availability by themselves.  I use a combination of the Qantas and British Airways award search tools to find

6. US Airways allows one stopover per award ticket, so you would be able to see a second destination besides HKG.  On my last trip to HKG, I actually routed SYD - HKG (stopover) - Cebu, Phillipenes and back.  It cost the same as a trip to Hong Kong solely, and I got to tack on a little beach holiday for myself.  Anywhere in southeast or north asia will price at the same as just a return to Hong Kong (90k miles), so it may be worth working in a stopover to another destination in Asia.


Good Luck!

airADL

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

Member since 25 Mar 2014

Total posts 195

Thanks RealKid

Awesome I think its worth a shot.

So you physically call the US Airways awards centre to book instead of online?

So you can mix carriers also?

RealKid

Member since 20 May 2014

Total posts 92

No worries mate.

1. US airways awards are not bookable online unless you're travelling on US Airways or American Airlines.  Oneworld partners have to be called in to book.

2. You can mix Oneworld carriers.  US also partners with some select non-oneworld airlines like Jet Airways (India), Air China, and Air New Zealand to name a few.  These airlines are not combinable with other Oneworld airlines, nor are them combinable with US Airways, nor are they combinable with each other.  For instance, if you wanted to book on Air New Zealand, all legs of the trip would have to be on ANZ for it to work.

Also, just make sure you research the award availability before you purchase the miles!

airADL

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

Member since 25 Mar 2014

Total posts 195

Thank you very much for your assistance, safe travels

gumshoe

Member since 04 Nov 2012

Total posts 61

Calling to book is a toll free No.?.

RealKid

Member since 20 May 2014

Total posts 92

Calling to book incurs a USD $25 booking fee, which is unfortunately not waived. 

gumshoe

Member since 04 Nov 2012

Total posts 61

I thought I read somewhere the 7.5% tax on thesemiles was only paid by CN and US residents?.

RealKid

Member since 20 May 2014

Total posts 92

You might be thinking of Avianca/TACA LifeMiles, which only levy a tax on CN and US residents.  The tax is hardcoded into the buy miles page for US Airways, so there is no way around it, unfortunately. 

gumshoe

Member since 04 Nov 2012

Total posts 61

If say my wife and I both get say 80K miles each out of this promo and she transfers hers to me to book 2 award flightsis, is there any penalty on transefering them over?.

RealKid

Member since 20 May 2014

Total posts 92

Transferring miles costs $15/1000m, which almost obviates the whole reason to buy miles under the scheme. 

What you should do is plan beforehand and search for an itinerary where there are two business class seats open on each flight.  When you call US Airways, the agent is able to search for the two tickets as if it was one booking, and then when it comes time to pay, they will split the booking.  That way the 80k points will deduct from your respective accounts without you having to transfer any miles. 

 

One thing to mention, 80k is not enough miles to get a return business class ticket anywhere outside of the South Pacific region.  I'm assuming then you are buying these miles for an Economy return ticket.  Keep in mind:  Award tickets still attract taxes and fees, so even if you have the points you need you will still likely have to pay an extra $100-200/ticket depending on where you are going.  

The real value from the buy miles promotions comes from booking Business or First class tickets.  You will likely find it is not much more expensive, if at all, to buy a saver economy ticket to wherever you are trying to go. 

gumshoe

Member since 04 Nov 2012

Total posts 61

Thanks for that.

We have enough QFF points CNS/HKG/CNS in J, then propose to use miles from there to Europe also in J.

Was just not sure about how the USDM worked with a partner.

Have done this trip before but used AS miles for the outbound and QFF points from HKG to VIE via DXB.

RealKid

Member since 20 May 2014

Total posts 92

That sounds like a good plan then. 

One hidden thing you have to worry about it British Airways.  Unlike the other OW partners, US Airways passes on the fuel surcharges for British Airways flights, which can be sometimes up to $400 each way. 

If you are going to Europe from HKG, your best bet is CX, followed by Finnair or JAL.

gumshoe

Member since 04 Nov 2012

Total posts 61

It wont be BA no LHR for us either, have used CX numerous times so that it will be for direct flights. I'm in various airine programs so know where to look for awards before calling.

These days we can be flexible on weeks and month or cities to some point, as long as its not cold!. The trip is back to Split and Dalmaton Islands, Paris and possibly Milan.

RealKid

Member since 20 May 2014

Total posts 92

Awesome! Sounds like you're set!

Considering US allows you to buy up to 100,000 with the 100% bonus, you should look and see if CX has F seats available on the dates you are flying.  It'd be around an extra $400 each to buy the extra 20,000 miles. 

I've flown them before in F and it was a brilliant flight.  I flew them with my partner last November to Milan, and was able to find two seats without two much difficulty.

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