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Master Chart of What Sites Search Airline Award Availability

Not all airline websites show all their partner awards. When you’re looking for a specific flight and not all the availability is showing up, this chart will not only show you what airlines aren’t showing up on the site you’re using, but what alternative site you should try.

A lot of people really appreciated my Master Chart of Avoiding Fuel Surcharges, so I decided to make a chart that’s a resource for which airlines can be searched on which sites. If you’re booking a Star Alliance award, what sites do you search? And even more specifically, if you’re looking for a certain airline, what sites can you use to find award availability?

Now understand that while you can use United miles to book flights on Star Alliance partners, United might not look for all the partners. So the first column is what airline we want to find award availability to fly on. The rest will show which sites you can use to search for that airline’s award seats.

The very first example is OneWorld. I’ll just walk through the first row. When looking for flights on AA you can search any of the sites listed to find award space. All four columns of results say “Yes” indicating that the sites at the top of the column do indeed search AA.

A few rows down is Cathay Pacific, and only BritishAirways.com and Qantas.com.au search for Cathay award space.

 

Sites that search OneWorld Award Availability

AA British Airways Qantas Expert Flyer
AA Yes Yes Yes Yes
British Airways Yes Yes Yes
Cathay Yes Yes
Air Berlin Yes Yes Yes
Finnair Yes Yes Yes Yes
Iberia Yes Yes
JAL Yes
LAN Yes
TAM Yes
Malaysia Yes
Qantas Yes Yes Yes
Qatar Yes Yes
Royal Jordinian Yes Yes
S7
SriLankan Yes Yes

Note: Alaska also searches AA, BA and Qantas

Learn more:

 

Sites that search Star Alliance Award Availability

United Air Canada ANA Lufthansa
Adria Airways Yes Yes Yes Yes
Aegean Airlines ? ? ?
Air Canada Yes Yes Yes
Air China Yes Yes Yes
Air New Zealand Yes Yes Yes
ANA Yes Yes Yes
Asiana Airlines Yes Yes Yes
Austrian Yes Yes Yes Yes
Avianca Yes Yes Yes
Brussels Airlines Yes Yes Yes Yes
Copa Yes Yes Yes
Croatia Airlines Yes Yes Yes Yes
EgyptAir Yes Yes Yes
Ethiopian Airlines Yes Yes Yes
EVA Yes Yes Yes
LOT Yes Yes Yes Yes
Lufthansa Yes Yes Yes Yes
Scandinavian Airlines Yes Yes Yes
Shenzhen Airlines Yes Yes
Singapore Airlines Yes Yes
South African Airways Yes Yes Yes
Swiss Yes Yes Yes Yes
TACA Yes Yes Yes
TAP Yes Yes Yes
Thai Airways Yes Yes Yes
Turkish Yes Yes Yes
United Yes Yes Yes

Learn more:

 

Sites that search SkyTeam Award Availability

FlyingBlue Delta Expert Flyer Alaska
Aeroflot Yes Yes
Aerolíneas Argentinas ? Yes
Aeromexico Yes Yes Yes
Air Europa Yes Yes
Air France Yes Yes Yes Yes
Alitalia Yes Yes Yes
China Airlines Yes
China Eastern Yes Yes
China Southern Yes Yes
Czech Airlines Yes Yes
Delta Air Lines Yes Yes Yes? Yes
Garuda Indonesia Yes
Kenya Airways Yes Yes
KLM Yes Yes Yes Yes
Korean Air Yes Yes Yes
Middle East Airlines ?
Saudia ?
TAROM Yes
Vietnam Airlines Yes
XiamenAir Yes

 

Non-Alliance Award Availability

ExpertFlyer Alaska United Qantas
Alaska Yes Yes
Aer Lingus Yes Yes
Emirates Yes Yes Yes
Fiji Airways Yes
Air Tahiti Nui Yes

Conclusion

Note: some of the ExpertFlyer information was based on feedback, and not personal experience. Everything else was searched for by me, and either found or didn’t see availability on a route that had availability on another site.

Still, I think ExpertFlyer is over rated as a search engine. Nothing about the site though is common sense.

In short:

  • OneWorld awards can almost all be searched for with British Airways’ site.
  • Star Alliance awards can almost all be searched for with Aeroplan (Air Canada) and ANA. United is the most user-friendly (and you don’t even have to log in) but it has just a couple holes.
  • SkyTeam awards can almost all be searched for with Flying Blue.

But this chart will show one simple thing, when you can’t find awards on your go to sight, who will have the missing key.

 

Related Posts:

66 Comments

  1. Very Useful :)

    Reply
    • Thanks

      Reply
  2. Hey Drew, these types of charts are super helpful, thanks for assembling this info together. I’m sure a lot of folks use these too, so may want to correct a slight typo error if going to maintain the chart over time….last master chart should say Skyteam not Star Alliance. Thanks again!

    Reply
    • Thanks, always glad for feedback and that was a big type lol

      Reply
  3. You are always adding so much value and unique content to our community, thank you!

    I try supporting you by signing up with credit cards through your links. However, you don’t have have that many links. Any chance that you will acquire more over time?

    Reply
    • Very glad to hear someone sees these as actual contributions. 😀 And obviously I appreciate your support, reading and commenting. But in terms of links right now I’m staying very simple, it’s easier for me. If the opportunity of maintaining my own credit card deals had more pros than cons, I would… but we’ll see.

      Reply
  4. Brilliant post, again!

    A note, Lot is seen on United’s website. Try POZ-WAW on any day, and you will see it.

    Reply
    • Great, found an example and added it.

      Reply
  5. Could you please add Fiji Airways?

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    • If you can’t tell I kind of bailed on the non alliance awards because it would look more like a list than a chart. But maybe still worth doing.

      I added Fiji. You find awards on AlaskaAir.com

      Reply
    • It should be noted you can search for Fiji space on Qantas

      Reply
  6. Wow! thanks you so much for this post. I read a lot of blogs and this blog is really different from all others. In other blog you just hear apply for this apply for that 3 times a day and your posts are so helpful!!!! I have like 20 of your posts bookmarked! Thanks again!

    Reply
    • Hah, thanks. Would be very glad to hear that you’ve even bookmarked 1. :-)
      Thanks for commenting just show appreciation. Really does mean a lot to me.
      Drew

      Reply
  7. Awesome post, thanks!

    However, I’d like to mention that you can search Korean Air award availability on Expert Flyer.

    Reply
    • I haven’t used expertflyer in a while. Can you show where I’d find such availability?
      Korean doesn’t show economy awards at all, and when I select a partner like KLM I didn’t see awards on routes I knew.

      Reply
  8. When judging award search tools, one thing you have to take into account is how many dates you can view at once. For Star Alliance, the United search tool is the best at this because it shows 2 months of availability at a time. On the other hand, Aeroplan’s award search tool is more complete because it shows more airlines, but it only shows 2 weeks at a time.

    The most annoying situation is when it comes to searching OneWorld award space. British Airways’ award search tool is the only one that’s almost complete, but it only shows one day of availability at a time. Are there any better options when searching for award space on LAN, TAM, JAL, or Malaysia Airlines?

    Reply
    • I agree completely. For me, United is not only enough, it saves me time.
      The others you named don’t really search oneworld, unfortunately. I’ve never tried LAN though. But that sums up the OW situation.
      JAL has the option to search AA, CX, BA, QF and AF. Not very complete and more painful than ANA to use with only dropdowns.

      Reply
  9. I often get LOT results on UNITED searches….

    Reply
    • Yep, thanks I found an example and added it.

      Reply
  10. Great post! Thanks for another valuable resource.

    One thing… unless something has changed, I think you can search CX award space on JAL

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    • Yes, JAL searches CX. I actually don’t mind searching for CX this way, rather than BA or QF. It has the odd nice search quirk – like finding the next flight day if CX doesn’t operate daily; something that BA doesn’t do.

      Reply
    • Guess I never think to search there because of the few airlines it searches, but it indeed does. It searches AA, CX, BA, QF and AF.

      Reply
  11. Drew – I might also suggest adding Alaska’s website for Emirates and Fiji Airways.

    Also, Expert Flyer provides Emirates and Air Tahiti Nui award space.

    Reply
    • Great suggestion. And right, I’ll add that.

      Reply
  12. This is great, Thanks! Problem with the web is these types of posts can be found forever, but become outdated.

    Reply
    • Well, I hope it sticks around forever. My pessimism about the web is that things get buried in a day. 😀

      Reply
  13. super helpful!

    Reply
    • Thanks for commenting to say so,
      Drew

      Reply
  14. As a ‘free’ (though limited by the points) tool , Award Nexus also covers lots of airlines.

    Reply
    • I’ve never messed with it so I didn’t want to start now. 😀 But I know a lot of people like it.

      Reply
  15. fantastically helpful charts, but LOT does show up on UA – booked an award on lot online about 2 weeks ago.

    Reply
    • Yep, thanks. I located an award an added it.

      Reply
  16. Sorry to post here, as my comment is off subject, but I am trying to signup for your newsletter, but get page not found once I click the “Yes, sign me up” button.

    Reply
    • That’s odd. But if I have your permission I can your email manually.

      Reply
  17. Incredibly helpful and detailed. Thank you for the hard work!

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    • Thanks you for reading! Drew

      Reply
  18. Wow, was thinking of paying ExpertFlyer but after reading your post, I doubt it.

    Reply
    • Well, I didn’t do it much justice as I just searched based off a single airline in an alliance (which should work but doesn’t). However, while I don’t like it, a lot of people use it for the alerts for award space. Although, I find that painful to use as well.

      Reply
  19. BA is known to have phantom flights on CX, the best way is finding them on JL. Award Nexus is excellent for award flights too. Airlines do not have all seats shown from other airlines they only have a small allocation if any.

    Reply
    • Good general resource, but agree with wizard on the seats. If the seat isn’t released to the partner to book with their points, availability isn’t going to show up. That should be a caveat. I at least know this to be the case on BA. Recent example, I was searching LAN availability on BA and got no availability for months because no flights were bookable with avios, but award space was wide open on LAN searching directly on their website.

      Reply
    • Well, sure if it’s an airlines own program it will always be better on their own site.

      But I hope AA just adds Cathay. Don’t know why they decide never to work together (and also why you earn 0% on CX for AA miles).

      Reply
  20. Hi Drew,
    I enjoy reading your blog and find a ton of valuable, interesting info. So please take the following as constructive criticism: I think it would be worthwhile to verify / test the data you’re posting before publishing in some cases. For example, Royal Jordanian does show up on BA.com. And LOT on united.com as mentioned by others was already fixed in the chart. And Aegean does show up on united.com. Also most of the expertflyer information is not accurate (do you have an account to test?).

    Please understand, the chart concept and start is awesome – it just could be that much better…

    Anyway – here are a couple other corrections that jumped out at me – not exhaustive but merely examples:
    Expert Flyer does search:
    Aeroflot
    Aerolineas Argentinas
    Air Europa
    Air France
    Alitalia
    China Eastern
    China Southern
    Czech Airlines
    Kenya Airways
    Xiamen Airlines
    Aer Lingus
    Emirates

    Expert Flyer does not search:
    British Airways
    Delta
    Qatar
    Etihad
    KLM award search is very limited (I wouldn’t include it)
    Finnair is economy only

    In non-alliance, I would add Expert Flyer also searches Air Tahiti Nui.

    And a couple suggestions to enhance the overall chart:

    Add Alaska and Delta to the Skyteam comparison. While not comprehensive in terms of number of airlines, the Alaska search tool is pretty good, and Delta.com is surprisingly useful now with the flexible date calendar. Within Skyteam, Delta searches Delta, Aeromexico, Air France, Alitalia, KLM and Korean, while Alaska searches Delta, Aeromexico, Air France, KLM and Korean. It’s not more than Air France obviously, but the routing and search tools give a good alternative to Air France, which I find to be flaky relatively often.

    Then outside of alliances, Alaska searches Alaska obviously, Emirates and Fiji, while Delta searches Alaska, Virgin Atlantic and Virgin Australia.

    So there you go – a little criticism but hopefully some value to go along with it…

    Reply
    • Hey Alex, I actually take no offense to any of the comment… at all. I know I didn’t do experflyer justice. BUT I will say this.

      For RJ, I searched on BA and AA next to each other on the same route and found no award availability on BA for RJ. I tried multiple examples where that was the case.
      I just don’t want to add anything without confirming. So with those, I’d need examples.

      With ExpertFlyer I just don’t use it. 😀
      So what I did was search AA, for example, and then searched the same routes that I was looking for on BA or whatever. ExpertFlyer found no award space for AA when AA did on flights that AA did have award space for.

      So I’ll go back through now trying other partners with the same routes. Which, for the record, it’s not a user friendly tool and should work for most things in the alliance if it’s pulling the award space.

      Anyways, I’ll go back through some of it in a second.

      Alaska is a good suggestion for Sky Team.

      Reply
    • Awesome – thanks for all the updates! I agree that Expertflyer isn’t my favorite, and I’m not comfortable with their AA results either. The only reasons I keep it around are for the award alerts, random partners that can’t be found anywhere else like Air Tahiti Nui and to double check other sites if I’m piecing together multiple segments. And that I really can’t stand the Air France site in terms of flakiness. For some reason I just get more search errors there than just about anywhere – I know others don’t feel that way. Anyway – I don’t disagree with the end result – I wouldn’t recommend it for 95% of folks searching for awards.

      That’s weird about RJ on BA.com. I did a quick double check before commenting, and I found space. This morning I see the same – check 2 pax ORD-AMM Economy in January. AA.com has 1/12, 1/21, 1/23 and BA.com matches each. Obviously not extensive testing, but a couple more spot checks returned the same.

      The only other change I didn’t see in the charts now is that United and ANA both search Aegean. Check something like SKG-CHQ on 6/3 – nonstop A3 comes up on both. I didn’t check Aeroplan.

      Thanks again for all the good content!!

      Reply
    • Actually I think Drew is right about RJ. In fact, I just booked an RJ segment that was showing up on AA but not BA. I’m not sure if this is a difference in partner availability (like Aer Lingus and its various partners) or in showing available space. I didn’t try calling BA to see if a phone agent could see the space since I was booking with AA.

      Reply
  21. So solid. Drew is a legend. The man just cranks out quality content day after day. The quality of his posts and attention to detail are unmatched in the points and travel world, especially considering how large other sites have become and the resources they employ. I frequent many sites on a daily/weekly basis and almost all pale in comparison to what Drew has put together (and keeps putting together). I can’t say enough good things really – it’s just fantastic. Thanks Drew I really appreciate it.

    Reply
    • Wow, flattered. Legend might be a slight exaggeration, but I’ll accept it none the less. 😀 But really, I appreciate the encouragement. It’s really the comments (where people can interact) that I’m encouraged to go back, fine-tune and write more. So much thanks!
      Drew

      Reply
  22. I know you don’t put your email out in public, but I have a question (unrelated to this post) and I don’t know how else to reach you except here pretty much

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    • I sent you an email.

      Reply
  23. Such a Delta hater! They deserve a mention on the skyteam list, especially with their new, seemingly functional award calendar. It’s also good to be able to find non-saver level space on Delta. 40,000 miles for a trip from RT NY to Alaska, a domestic stopover and a free one way to Miami is not bad.
    As others mentioned, you should make a chart for Alaska too. Their site is good.

    Reply
    • I admit to Delta hating, but I will admit to just grabbing a chart I made earlier. so I will go back and update it, and make it better, now. Thanks for the feedback.
      Drew

      Reply
  24. I don’t necessarily expect you to know this but I figured if anyone would know the answer to a nuanced question like this, it would be you. Are United, ANA and Aeroplan really the best places to search for Air New Zealand award space? NZ flies several routes out of Christchurch but all 3 of these search engines regularly say something like, “we do not operate flights on this route”. Maybe Air New Zealand really just never ever releases any space out of CHC?

    Reply
    • Nevermind my question as I finally got a very limited amount of award space to show out of CHC. Looks like NZ just doesn’t release much which probably isn’t surprising.

      Reply
  25. I know that the point of this post is where to find availability freely on airline websites, and does an awesome job of it.
    That said, when booking a major trip, I usually find it worth my time to toss $20 to KVSTool for their diamond subscription for two months. I look for my flights a segment at a time and have found great luck using the power search tool where it brute force searches day by day until it finds availability on the particular route you are looking for (the program just pretends to the airline website to be a web browser and simply speeds up the search). This has easily saved me $20 in time while planning a flight. It is by no means user friendly, but if you are smart enough to stitch together an alliance partner international award ticket, you’re smart enough to use the 90s user interface of KVSTool.

    Reply
  26. Where to search for Hainan Airline award seats?

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  27. Before calling to use miles I always find award seats on at least two sites, as I mainly use OW airlines I try JL first then BA and Award Nexus. JL in regard to QF and CX are usually spot on.

    KVS tool they say is the best but its messy to instal on Apple computers as its windows based and Expert Flyer is very limited for OW awards.

    Have found booking using AS miles excellent, calling USDM too many different results from operators so have to HUACA (hang up and call again).

    Reply
  28. I’ve bookmarked this page bc it is so useful to me. Just a quick correction: Qantas shows S7 award availability.

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  29. United does not show Brussels availability.

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  30. BA shows S7 availability

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  31. This should be updated to show that Delta now shows many more airline availability online. Also, Flying Blue only shows partial MU, CI and other airline availability (try searching for HNL-TPE CI or HNL-PVG MU, for example: you will see that the flights only show on delta.com but never on FB). So, FB is not to be trusted for its award results, at least for come airlines (pretty much all * China / China * ones). That should be noted, that FB only shows partial (only some routes) availability for many airlines, but not full (not all routes), and thus is not a resource trust fully.

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  32. Qantas site shows Emirates award space. Sucks to see it when there’s no Cathay space at all.

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  33. Qantas shows Aer Lingus award space.

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  34. Qantas also shows TAM space. You have marked otherwise.

    Reply
  35. This chart is very informative. One question though: how do you search for Star Alliance flights from North America to Southeast Asia via Europe to take full advantage of United’s 3 connections rule? Which site do you go to? I tried United.com but it only shows flights over the Pacific. I find this intiguing cause you can actually see 3 EXTRA European cities if I can somehow squeeze those connection times under 24 hours at each city.

    Reply
  36. What a terrific tool…..user friendly and straightforward. Thanks so much for taking the time to provide this information. Much appreciated!

    Reply
  37. Drew, you are fantastic, and here is a challange for you! My wife and I have a total of over 2 million miles/points /credit cards/hotel points in various programs and need someone’s expert opinion on how to use them the most efficient ways to travel!How can I get your opinion for a personalized trip I may plan to take?

    Reply

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