Basically I worked two things here: 1) I noticed that to fly between two Oceania locations only costs 12,500 miles and 20,000 in business class. Which is insane because Oceania covers most of the Pacific and there are rarely direct flights. So in order to go from one to the other you have to be routed through Asia and Australia. and 2) You can create a stopover AND an open-jaw on round-trip flights using United miles.
My dream route was born and this week I booked it. A flight that would be 9,000 miles direct, is instead 26,000 miles with my added stops in Business Class for a 60 hours long series of flights.
What is the route?
- Saipan, Micronesia to Seoul, South Korea (on Asian Airlines’ 767 Business Class).
- Seoul to Singapore (on Singapore Airlines’ Airbus 330-300 Business Class).
A legal layover is less than 24 hours so I have a layover in Singapore from 6am to midnight. A place that we’ve wanted to see but didn’t feel the need to spend a lot of time in, so it works out.
- Singapore to Melbourne (on Singapore Airlines’ 777-300er Business Class (their newest plane)).
- Melbourne to Auckland (on Air New Zealand’s 777-300er Business Premier Class).
We’ll spend exactly 3 weeks in New Zealand, the officially allowed stopover. It will be May/June: their winter. If you have any suggestions, let me know. We really have few plans for there yet, but are considering a flight to Queenstown.
- Auckland to Rarotonga, Cook Islands (on Air New Zealand’s 777-200 Business Premier Class).
2 weeks in the Cook Islands, our official destination.
- Rarotonga to Sydney (on Air New Zealand’s 767-300 Business Class).
Spend the night in Sydney.
- Sydney to Bangkok (on Thai Airways’ 747-400 Business Class).
Made a 5 hour layover because I hear really good things about their lounge and because business class passengers get a 30 minute massage in the lounge. We’ll take our time.
- Bangkok to Tokyo (on Thai Airways’ A330 Business Class).
Then we are suppose to continue to Guam but read through the lines here.
If you’re super perceptive you may have noticed that the open-jaw was not utilized. Despite hopes and dreams, they would not let me work it in during the Australia part of the flight above. (The plan was to fly into Sydney and continue on from Melbourne). Instead the open-jaw is to return to Guam instead of Saipan. This was simply added in order to increase likelihood of getting routed through Japan. But we will have already been to Guam by then.
Needless to say, we are excited! This was all one ticket but I just booked a few to get to Saipan. Which includes Saigon, Hong Kong, Tokyo, some amazing hotels (stay tuned) and my first Cathay First Class flight (and my fourth international Cathay flight). Over 60 hours of flying in two months.
To prove how valuable this ticket is, below is a quote from Kayak for a similar flight. Even this isn’t quite as valuable because 1) The route is a little dumbed down, (I didn’t put in Bangkok or Japan for example). And 2) Singapore Airlines, Thai Airways and Air New Zealand are consistently ranked as 3 of the top business class airlines in the world. The quote from Kayak was mostly United and Korean Air. We’re comparing apples and prunes here.
$10,000 divided by 40,000 miles = 25 cents per mile.
Not every reward has this kind of value but it’s certainly my goal. As you can imagine, there will be a follow up post.