The Alaska Mileage Plan is one of my favourite frequent flyer programs. Not only can you buy Alaska miles at great rates on a regular basis, but there are also plenty of hidden treasures; particularly when it comes to redeeming First and Business Class flights on Alaska’s partner airlines.

One of the best features of the Alaska Mileage Plan is the free stopover on partner award tickets. A stopover allows you to stay for more than 24 hours at your transit destination, or for as long as you want up to 364 days (e.g. Singapore > Tokyo (stopover) > Los Angeles). This gives you the opportunity to enjoy two destinations in a single way ticket.

I can’t promise that this will be a short post, but I am sure you will know what to do if you want to find out how to fly:

  • Intra Asia “Round Trip” on Japan Airlines Business Class for $576.10

This post is meant for readers who have a foundation knowledge about the Alaska Mileage Plan. Otherwise, please read my previous post to find out why so many people love the Alaska mileage Plan.

This post will be structured into four sections:

Beginners Level: Create Two Holidays in a Single Flight Ticket

Intermediate Level: Secure an Intra-Asia “Round Trip” Business Class on Japan Airlines with 25,000 miles instead of 50,000 miles.


Expert Level: You Can Fly From Different Airports When You Do A Stopover

Recall: How to Book a Stopover Award Ticket on the Alaska Mileage Plan

Beginners Level: Create Two Holidays in a Single Flight Ticket

Situation 1: Suppose i) you are based in Auckland and ii) you are planning to visit Los Angeles, why not stay in Sydney for a few days first before travelling to the US? You can redeem one way Qantas Business/First Class with 55,000/70,000 Alaska miles for travel between New Zealand/Australia to North America.

Sweet Spots on Alaska Mileage Plan
Qantas First Class for 70,000 Alaska Miles

So how much are 55,000/70,000 Alaska miles in a dollar sense?

The Alaska Mileage Plan offers miles promotions on a regular basis. While you can earn Alaska miles from credit cards and by flying with Alaska Airlines or partner airlines, you can also purchase Alaska miles at 1.97 US cents/mile today (27th August 2019).

At 1.97 US cents/mile, one way Qantas Business/First Class will cost you $1,084/$1,379.

Click here to purchase Alaska miles directly before the current promotion will end on 30th August 2019.

Situation 2:

Alternatively, suppose i) you are based in Sydney and ii) you will be coming back from a trip to Auckland and iii) intending to do a trip to Los Angeles in two weeks time. You should consider redeeming a Qantas Business/First Class ticket with 55,000/70,000 Alaska miles for travel from Auckland to Los Angeles and add a stopover in Sydney – technically, you are flying the Auckland to Sydney leg for free.

Auckland > Sydney (stopover) > Los Angeles

Some routing examples:

  • US > Hong Kong (stopover) > Africa for 62,500 miles one way in Business Class and 70,000 miles in First Class on Cathay Pacific
  • Hong Kong > Vancouver (stopover) > New York for 62,500 miles one way in Business Class and 70,000 miles in First Class on Cathay Pacific

You can purchase Alaska Miles here directly.

Intermediate Level: Secure an Intra-Asia “Round Trip” Business Class on Japan Airlines with 25,000 miles instead of 50,000 miles.

A one-way Intra-Asia Business Class on Japan Airlines cost 25,000 miles. However, with the free stopover, you can do a “round trip” Intra-Asia Business Class for 25,000 miles too!

To pick up this trick, there is one ground rule you need to remember – you cannot start and end your journey in the same destination.

Suppose you are based in Singapore, you can try the following routing:

  • Singapore – Tokyo – Bangkok/Kuala Lumpur/Ho Chi Minh/Jakarta
  • Bangkok/Kuala Lumpur/Ho Chi Minh/Jakarta – Tokyo – Singapore

To book this ticket, ensure that you have selected “Multi-city”.

25,000 miles + $83.60 (tax)

If you purchase your miles at 1.97 US cents/mile (cheapest rate), this ticket will only cost you $576.10 net. Click here to purchase Alaska Miles directly.

On a side note, you may encounter this error message when you are about to finalise your ticket:

This error message tells you that it is a phantom booking – no actual award availability (a widely known problem). If this is the case, simply change your dates and you should be able to find something to book. For the benefit of the whole travel hacking community, I urge you not to call Alaska reservation team when encountering such a problem. I trust you want to enjoy this trick while it lasts?

Expert Level: You Can Fly From Different Airport When You Do A Stopover

Using the same Japan Airlines example in the previous section, instead of flying Singapore > Tokyo (stopover) > Bangkok in a single way ticket, you can do an open-jaw ticket where you can fly from different airports when you do a stopover in Japan (e.g. Singapore > Tokyo, Osaka > Bangkok). You should be able to book an open-jaw ticket on flights operated by other airlines as well.

A single ticket: Singapore > Japan (stopover) > Bangkok. Open Jaw: Tokyo (HND) and Osaka (KIX)

Recall: How to Book a Stopover Award Ticket on The Alaska Mileage Plan

To book a stopover ticket with Alaska miles, click here and make sure you select “Multi-city” and “Use miles”.

If you know other creative ways to leverage on free stopover on the Alaska Mileage Plan, please do leave us a comment below!

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