Persistence and following some basic ideas worked for Mary. Here is her story:
I thought I’d share my recent award experience with you. I’m hoping it may help others who scored the British Airways 100K and want to use the miles to book on American. I was looking to book a trip for my family to Jackson Hole over the summer. I researched on American’s web site and Expert Flyer to find some flights. I found a trip with 2 connections each way (and knew there were 7 seats open for almost all of the legs). I went to britishairways.com
and the trip didn’t show up even when I included partners. I called British Airways to book. I explained that I couldn’t see the flights on their site that I found on American. She searched and told me that no tickets at the super saver rate existed. I told her that I could see them on the American site. She told me that American doesn’t release all of the frequent flyer tickets to them. From reading your blog and others, I knew that wasn’t true. I also had read that you shouldn’t try to convince the agent that that isn’t true. That you should just call back and get a different agent. So I did.
The second agent was very helpful. She also told me that she didn’t see tickets available at the saver rate. I told her I could see them on American and Expert Flyer. She then told me the only ones she could see were for 1st class. (Now I’m not like you, I always fly coach so I can get as many trips for my family as I can.) When she told me the routing, I realized that she may only be able to see trips with 1 connection for partner airlines. I asked if she could look up the flights if I told her the flight numbers. She agreed and I gave her all the numbers. And I was able to book our trip at the saver rate. She didn’t even charge me for talking to an agent because she said I would not have been able to book it online.
I hope this helps others. Happy Thanksgiving! I am truly thankful for your blog!
Rick Ingersoll is one of the world’s experts on frugal travel and flying free and the author of The Frugal Travel Guy Handbook. A retired mortgage banker from Traverse City, Michigan, he has retired to Hilton Head Island,... All Articles
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