My husband and I need to book a one-way J ticket from Washington DC to San Francisco this year.

6 replies

ZedEllePea

Member since 01 Feb 2016

Total posts 3

My husband and I need to book a one-way J ticket from Washington DC to San Francisco this year. What's the most cost-effective method to do this? Do we book directly with the airline (either United or Virgin), or is there a better method to utilise our FF points? Most of our points are in the AMEX Membership Rewards program, so we can transfer them where we need them (within the program restrictions).

TIA for your assistance.

henrus

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

Member since 23 Oct 2013

Total posts 768

How many Amex points do you have? and can you be more specific with a date or month?

travs

Member since 21 Oct 2015

Total posts 8

In the US, J doesn't exist domestically. It's really F or Y only. IMO, it's not really worth it for a 4 hour ish flight to spend for F. If you a QF FF, then you can actually get a good amount of status credits in paid F cross country via AA, which is what I usually do if I need SC. You can get ~240-280 SC RT for < 1k USD many times, which is more SC that I get flying a flight w/ similiar costs in PE (and 3 x longer) trans pacific on QF, at usually 2-3x the cost.

Also, the most US carrier F product is really bad. It's worse than QF's domestic J product, even on the 737. Fares don't even give you lounge access, service and food are horrible. The only lay flat flights domestically in the US are between NYC and LA and SF. I guess you could fly to JFK then across, but that seems silly.

ZedEllePea

Member since 01 Feb 2016

Total posts 3

We have a couple of million AMEX points, and specific date of travel is 16 October 2016. 

The problem with AA, from what I can see, is that they don't offer a direct flight to San Francisco to Washington. Time is of the essence, so we want to get from A to B in the most efficient way. Having said that, if there's a particularly compelling reason to fly an alternate route, we're open to that. 

if First is woeful in the US, exactly how terrible is Economy...?

vfm

Member since 26 Jul 2015

Total posts 26

Flown F several times on AA and DL last few years (so can't comment on the VX or UA product), but unfortunately not their recent transcon hard product. Travs is correct that US domestic F is poor compared with our local product, but it's way better than flying Y in the US (which I've also done)! But if you've got pts to burn then why not. A compromise might be the local Y+ product, which should allow you to board after F but before many of the hordes of Y fighting for overhead locker space. Personally, I'd fly direct if I could. Not sure the most cost-effective way to book though.

akronflyer

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

Member since 29 Jul 2014

Total posts 144

Agree totally with Travs re First Class in the USA, all rather average and just snacks on the seven flights i took domestically

American lounges offer very little in the way of food, if i dont eat another Olive or consume tastless cheese again i wont be too unhappy

The only advantage is the proverbial status run , tranferring via an American hub gives you  an opportunity to double dip status credits rather than flying direct

Also buy the best carry on you can , i used Victorinox  Spectra which is cheaper here than the States

ZedEllePea

Member since 01 Feb 2016

Total posts 3

Thanks for the insight. Am curious about the carry on though - why do you recommend buying 'the best'? Our carry on is Louis Vuitton (I know, shamefully nouveau riche) - can't tell if this is a good thing or a bad thing from your post!

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