Redeeming American AAdvantage Miles On Jet Airways

Quick trivia question — what’s the best first class product you can redeem your American AAdvantage miles on for travel between the US and Europe? The answer is probably Jet Airways first class… if you act soon.

Jet-Airways-First-Class-1
Jet Airways 777-300ER first class

But before I dig too deep into that, lets step back for a second.

Jet Airways’ unique North America operations

Jet Airways is one of India’s better airlines (which I realize isn’t saying a whole lot). They have a unique setup for their North America operations, in the sense that they route those flights via Brussels. Jet Airways’ North American destinations include Newark and Toronto, which they serve nonstop from Brussels. Then from Brussels those flights continue to Delhi and Mumbai.

Jet-Airways-Brussels-Hub

Jet Airways’ business class product to the US…

Historically Jet Airways flies Airbus A330 aircraft to North America, which are equipped only with an economy and business class cabin.

As I explained in my post about redeeming American AAdvantage miles for travel to the Middle East, they have a staggered fully flat business class product which actually looks quite good.

Jet-Airways-Business-Class
Jet Airways business class

They used to offer a herringbone configuration in business class, though in the meantime they have the above product on their North America-bound aircraft instead.

Redeeming American AAdvantage miles on Jet Airways

American belongs to the oneworld alliance, so it’s easy to overlook the dozen or so airline partners they have which don’t belong to oneworld.

American-Airline-Partners

One of those partners is Jet Airways. The reason they probably don’t get a lot of attention is because:

  • A lot of people don’t know they operate flights between Newark/Toronto and Brussels
  • People typically don’t go out of their way to fly Indian airlines
  • There’s no way to search their award space online, unless you have a JetPrivilege account with miles in it
  • The only practical way to inquire about award space is to call up American and ask

But what I’ve found is that Jet Airways has excellent business class award availability between Toronto and Brussels. Even throughout the summer, they have business class award space almost every day. And there are no fuel surcharges if redeeming American miles for travel on Jet Airways.

Availability from Newark to Brussels is okay. Not nearly as good as out of Toronto, but there’s definitely still some space, and it’s worth checking.

Jet Airways is sending a 777-300ER to Toronto!

Things are about to get even more exciting, though. Starting June 20, Jet Airways will begin operating a Boeing 777-300ER featuring a first class cabin on the Toronto to Brussels route. Yes, this is the same 777-300ER that has been leased to Turkish and Thai in the past several years.

Jet-Airways-First-Class-2
Jet Airways 777-300ER first class

This equipment change will apply from June 20 through September 14, 2014. From June 20 through July 3 only a few flights a week will be operated by the 777-300ER, while starting July 3 six of the seven weekly frequencies will be operated by a 777-300ER.

While this is only a temporary equipment change, I think it’s worth mentioning.

As it stands, the only first class products on which you can redeem AAdvantage miles for travel between the US and Europe are American Airlines first class and British Airways first class. American releases virtually no transatlantic first class award space, while there are massive fuel surcharges on British Airways redemptions.

Jet Airways is releasing a good amount of first class award space on this route. Based on my calls inquiring about award availability, Jet Airways has 1-2 first class award seats per flight between Toronto and Brussels.

American charges 62,500 AAdvantages miles for one-way first class travel between the US and Europe, and there are no fuel surcharges.

Bottom line

This isn’t the most significant equipment change ever, but it is a fun one. It’s especially convenient for those looking to redeem AAdvantage miles for travel to Europe this summer, given that the equipment change is happening over a peak travel period.

I’d argue this product is also better than the hard products offered by American and British Airways, as this is a fully enclosed suite with doors.

Comments

  1. Thanks. I never heard of that airline so had to look it up. Safety ratings look fine and it won some awards in the past so is worth a look.

  2. Any sense of how many biz seats they release? always looking for places where I can get 4 premium cabin award seats on the same flight.

  3. @ Tim — It seemed to be an average of two or so seats per flight. Didn’t find any dates with four seats, unfortunately.

  4. A bit off topic but do you know if Virgin Atlantic charges fuel surcharge for reward flights on Jet Airways?

  5. Lucky, were those photos of Jet Airways first class from your own experience? I could barely see the seat in the first pic, unfortunately.

  6. Lucky

    No doubt, this is freaking amazing news!! Especially given the ease of generating URs.

    But I would like to see some speculations on how is this going to affect SQs award availability. Especially in FC! Because all is not going to peachy here… we saw what happened with UA.

  7. This is awesome news, I just booked this in First on June 21st to replace a booking I had on Openskies in BizBed. The first three agents I spoke to at the wonderful EXP desk informed me that no plane actually flew from Brussels to Toronto. Finally the fourth one I spoke with was able to find the flight and availability I wanted.

  8. @ RH — In theory yes, though I’m not sure what the status of their partnership is. I know at one point it was suspended. Also keep in mind that US Airways won’t let you mix non-oneworld partners on an award.

  9. Isn’t United also partners with Jet? I tried to redeem last summer and the agents seemed to have no idea how to do it and i just gave up. I’d be curious to hear if anyone has redeemed for UA miles on jet.

  10. I’m looking to travel to India in November, and have oneworld emerald status. In order to use jet for award travel, can I book it through AA’s reservation helpline? Or do you have to go directly via Jet?

  11. Hey Lucky, Any way to book a Jet Airways codeshare flight on Etihad with US Airways miles? You can redeem US Airways miles with Jet, but didn’t know if that extends to codeshare flights on Etihad. Thanks!

  12. Hi Lucky, Could you tell me a place where I can find Jet Airways award availability that I can book using AA miles?

  13. Thanks for the tips Lucky. I did travel to India on Jet on their first class product and it was great. However, a change coming in Feb 2015 might put a bit of a dent in flying them to Asia in a premium class. Starting Feb 2015, Jet and AA will drop their baggage agreement, which will basically mean that we will have to recheck luggage in Europe.

  14. This is a 3 year old post but I’m looking to redeem my aa miles to India. BA unfortunately has the expensive surcharge that negates the use of miles. Does calling AA to redeem on Jet Airways still hold true? I would be traveling from DTW to BOM in Aug. Please and Thank you.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *