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Travel to Paris Dilemma - free ticket or not?

Discussion in 'Social Life, Food & Drink, Travel' started by gumercindo, Feb 3, 2012.

  1. gumercindo

    gumercindo Senior member

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    So here's the deal...

    Going to Paris. First time for me and I'm going with my GF. Going for 9-10 days in mid May. I have 2 options.

    1) I have a free ticket coming my way with UA. The day is not ideal and neither is the time and the flight is on UA (with a layover in Frankfurt for 3-4 hours) and CON (return - non stop).

    2) I pay $800 for the ticket and get the day I want, the time I want and the airline I want (Air France, Luf, etc.). I'd save the free ticket for other future trip(s).

    My biggest issues are the day is not ideal and the layover basically kills our first day in Paris.

    Thoughts?
     
    Last edited: Feb 3, 2012
  2. NAMOR

    NAMOR Senior member

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    how often do you fly? would you have another opportunity to use the UA ticket? when does the UA ticket expire?

    I have a total of 4 round trip tickets to Europe either through UA or AA affiliates. its been a complete pain in the ass trying to book a flight because of lack of availabilities, inconvenient flying times, and long layovers.
     
  3. gumercindo

    gumercindo Senior member

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    It's not a free ticket, per se, it's enough miles to buy a free ticket.

    I fly around 3-4 times per year. If not this flight, I would probably be able to use it on domestic flights, etc.
     
  4. tullytra

    tullytra Senior member

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    Use the miles for something else. If you're only going to be over there for 10 days max, there's no sense in burning a day on layovers. Are you staying in Paris the whole time?
     
  5. ter1413

    ter1413 Senior member

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    Pay da $800...
     
  6. curzon

    curzon Senior member

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    +1 See if you can use the miles for hotel, car rental, etc.
     
  7. worldrunner

    worldrunner Senior member

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    I would take Air Tahiti. I have taken Air France and Air Tahiti...I far prefer Air Tahiti due to more room in the seats, friendly workers, smaller lines,and often cheaper prices
     
  8. gumercindo

    gumercindo Senior member

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    Will be in Paris for 6-7 days and then 2-3 days elsewhere (trying to figure that out now).

    Good idea about using miles for hotels - ill see if i can do that.

    Going to pay the $800 bc the flight available using my miles is no longer available and now they have an even worse option.

    Thanks for the advice!
     
  9. poorsod

    poorsod Senior member

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    Also consider using the miles for an upgrade to business class.
     
  10. gumercindo

    gumercindo Senior member

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    I've looked into this and don't think this sort of thing is possible unless you buy an upgradable coach fare - which is ~$3k.
     
  11. poorsod

    poorsod Senior member

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    It is more expensive than the cheapest non-refundable coach fare, but can good value for the money. When I was younger I didn't care for the extra expense for business class comfort but these days . . .
     
  12. stevent

    stevent Senior member

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    I would use the miles for a few free domestics. And honestly it's rarely worth upgrading to business since you can buy business seats these days for relatively cheap if you book well in advance when there is a sale
     
  13. rollafan

    rollafan Senior member

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    That can be true. Last year, I bought a first class seat from SFO to HKG on Cathay Pacific for only $3000 and they normally cost $12k.

    In my opinion, miles are only good for first-class long haul flights.

    As for OP, you are far better off asking these similar questions on Flyertalk. They know what they're talking about.

    I also would not use UA for international flights ..but I'm sure you knew it already.
     
  14. tullytra

    tullytra Senior member

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    Is UA notorious for bad international flights? I used them to Paris and back last fall without issue. I lucked out and selected a non "Economy-plus" row online, but it turned out to be it anyway without the charge :)
     
  15. rollafan

    rollafan Senior member

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    UA is not too bad, but if you can choose something other than UA and if the price is right, you are better off something other than UA for international flights (with the exception of REALLY bad airlines..). Do you have any status on UA? If not, you got lucky!! [​IMG]

    I am an UA1K and I have used UA from SFO-PEK as it was the only airline to provide that route. It was either to use my 70,000 miles or use one of my 3 upgrades and I used my upgrade (which was a major ++). However.. the service, lounge, seats were not as good as ... Cathay Pacific, Lufthansa, Singapore, Swiss etc.
     
  16. gumercindo

    gumercindo Senior member

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    thanks, all. anyone here use mileage for anything other than flights? hotels, etc?>
     
  17. rollafan

    rollafan Senior member

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    You can certainly use miles to buy products, but majority of them are over-priced.

    You can also buy gift cards but it depends on airlines.
     
  18. stevent

    stevent Senior member

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    Yeah I would avoid UA at all costs, lots of bad experiences when I was younger, only time I've flown them since was for interviews when companies paid for my flights.
     
  19. rollafan

    rollafan Senior member

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    UA is known for providing excellent service to their elite members. [​IMG]

    For average Joes, it's hit or miss.
     
  20. GusW

    GusW Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    I've had several very average experiences from SFO to various spots in Europe in UA business class and first class. So, I now try and redeem miles by using their affiliates. The last time to London from SFO they flew us to LA and then non-stop to Heathrow on Air New Zealand Business Class. It was flawless service. Previously we made connecting flights to Paris and Rome through Luftansa using AU milage. The service was fantastic.
     
    Last edited: Feb 17, 2012

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