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Booking a Trip to Vietnam through Asiana/Eva (Best way to use Chase Points?)

eViLNeWBiE06 1,691 457 January 23, 2016 at 02:42 PM

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Last Edited by eViLNeWBiE06 January 23, 2016 at 11:26 PM
I'm not a frequent traveler, but I need to travel to Vietnam in a month. I saw that the cheapest tickets right now are $707/each from Seattle to Ho Chi Minh City on Asiana for 3 people (yesterday it was $800 on Eva). I have about 130,000 points on my Chase Freedom card, and my wife just got her Chase Sapphire card (because I heard it's great for travel).

What's the best way to book this? Either way, I should move all of my points to my wife's card. Do I then transfer points to get the airline miles, or do I just book with the points directly?

I also have 20,000 expired miles on United, and it'll cost $150 to get them reinstated... not sure if that helps. I also have 75,000 miles on American Airlines / US Airways, but I don't think that will help at all in this scenario?

Sorry, I'm a complete newbie at this. I've never booked travel with anything but cash... so points/miles are a new concept to me and I want to maximize my savings.



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First and foremost - if your wife just got the Sapphire Preferred - make sure she adds you as an authorized user - no credit check required and she will get 5,000 additional UR (ultimate rewards) points after you make a purchase.

Asiana is part of Star Alliance so in order to book these flights with points you would transfer the points from your wife's Chase UR to United to then book the Asiana flight with points.

RT economy saver awards will run at 40,000 points each way. When you look at the same flight purchased with cash - $707 RT - then spending 80,000 points for a $707 flight yields you .88 points per mile - which is a fairly poor redemption value for using points.

Generally speaking - when you want to assess the value of miles you always compare the points to the purchase price. If you wanted to book the same Asiana flight but in Business class (new Airbus A380 Business class on Asiana is quite nice) the same flight should cost around $4,000 RT with Cash but only 160,000 United miles - yielding about 2.5 cents per mile - a much more valuable redemption by those standards.

It all depends on how you like to travel and what you find valuable (my girlfriend has joint issues so the lie-flat seats in Business on the A380 for a 14 hour first leg to Seoul is a huge selling point - we are in NY).

If I were you I would buy these flights with cash and bank the miles earned and look for ways to redeem your ultimate rewards points for hotels or other flights with a higher redemption value.

Rewards travel research can be a bottomless pit especially because airlines and hotels regularly change their policies and redemption amounts. I would start looking at travel blogs to get a basic understanding of how the whole system works - start with Thepointsguy (google it)

Hope this helps
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