20 Responses

  1. Joshua MacDonald
    Joshua MacDonald at |

    I 100% agree with scheduling on this. I am for booking standard awards when you are not flexible.

  2. SJ
    SJ at |

    I book standard awards all the time unfortunately. Some sectors (like to/from Canada, Hawaii, small city pairs) last minute costs are crazy ($800+) and even 25k awards are a good deal.

  3. Oliver Trojak
    Oliver Trojak at |

    What makes your dislike domestic red-eyes?

    1. Seth Miller
      Seth Miller at |

      The not really sleeping part. Even if one assumes restful sleep the entire flight that’s only 4 hours if you’re lucky, given the climb out and descent times.

      I’m generally unhappy with only 4 hours of sleep in a real bed, much less in a coach seat on an airplane.

    2. Oliver Trojak
      Oliver Trojak at |

      I like them because I can maximize my last day somewhere. I guess I am always less concerned about how I feel when I come back lol

    3. Steven Sullivan
      Steven Sullivan at |

      I maximize my last day somewhere by spending the night, sleeping in a real bed, and flying home first thing the next morning. I’ve been commuting to the West Coast (or almost West Coast – Nevada) for going on 3.5 years now, and have taken only two redeyes home from that. Every other trip has been either Thursday afternoon so that I’m home around midnight Thursday, or like today, leaving first thing Friday morning so I get home by around 5:00 PM, in time for dinner. If I do the Friday return, I can work on the plane most of the day, and be far more productive than I would be if I had taken a redeye the night before and then passed out in bed for most of the rest of the day. Plus, this is less disruptive to my sleep schedule.

      If I’m on an overnight flight, I better be changing continents.

    4. Michael J. Graven
      Michael J. Graven at |

      Steven Sullivan my general rule is any overnight flight better require different money at the far end.

  4. DaninMCI
    DaninMCI at |

    On a Trans-con it seems worth it with those prices and times. What isn’t worth it is a typical non-transcon domestic award most of the time. It’s all about the cash price.

  5. Brandon
    Brandon at |

    Standard awards are definitely great for last-minute trips as well. Had a B6 flight that cancelled NYC-MSY last month and they couldn’t rebook me before the following day. Needed to be at work, so booked an AA standard award for 20k miles (plus the $75 close-in fee, unfortunately). Cash prices were >$400 to get me home that night, so it was definitely worth it.

  6. Sice
    Sice at |

    Make a book appearance in Utah and I’ll be there…the book looks intriuging, you should run a special on wandr.me! And btw, I need to find a skill like writing so I can get out of the internet startup world 🙂

  7. Greg N
    Greg N at |

    Yes, a Rocky Mountain tour! I’m in Santa Fe, so Albuquerque would work too. Right now the only dates on the “west cost tour” link show east coast dates.

    1. Greg N
      Greg N at |

      Edit – I should read more carefully. I see the west coast dates. But nothing in the Mountain time zone.

  8. Amol
    Amol at |

    Agree with scheduling which is why I’ve been focusing on earning points in credit card programs — that same $354 flight would be 20,000 FlexPerks and would also cover a $25 airline allowance to buy things sold by the airline. I would have even saved $5.60 on the tax! 🙂

  9. Poley King
    Poley King at |

    I happily booked a full fare domestic coach award on AS BOS-SEA-ANC-BRW and return (60K RT) because they do instant upgrades on full fare awards for elites. F upgrade space was available on all but the BRW flights so i grabbed it. Other option was 40K choice award in coach or 120k RT for full fare F (w/ lounge access)

  10. Jane
    Jane at |

    Your math is wrong. You paid 20,000 miles to save $348.40 ($364 of the ticket you would have purchased – $5.60 co-pay required along with the miles).

    Further math shows that you got 1.74 cents in value per AAdvantage mile used. And this is on the high-end of what they’re worth (for now, until the next devaluation). So yes, very sensible.

    But you ended up on a far worse airline (AA) that if you had paid $364 (DL), one that probably doesn’t even have seat-back screens on your 5+ hour flight (DL 757 guaranteed screen, AA 738 only 50% or so), so you should take that in consideration as well.

  11. Paul Brown
    Paul Brown at |

    You and I have the same “rules” about trans con red eyes and times… I just can’t. I’ll pay the extra if I need to.

  12. mark
    mark at |

    well if you have AA status, you can of course change this to saver levels even on the day of departure and knock it down to 12.5K!

  13. Miles and Points Recap: New 75k Offer on Citi Prestige, Amex/Avios Transfer Bonus, Booking "Standard" Awards and More - Miles For Family

    […] 8) Happily booking a “standard” award ticket by Wandering Aramean. A great post which mirrors my own thoughts on the subject. So very often in this hobby we are fixated on getting “saver” level award tickets. I think it has something to do with “winning” mentality, the satisfaction of knowing that we are smarter than airlines. But at what cost? […]