World class airline Etihad Airways first partnered with American Airlines back in 2011, which made it possible to redeem American Airlines AAdvantage miles for award flights on Etihad. Award space on Etihad flights is not searchable using the American Airlines website however. Luckily, searching for Etihad award space can be pretty easy.
Etihad has long been held in high regard as one of the premier airlines in the world. Flights on Etihad are bookable using your AA miles, but there are a few things to know first. The best place to search for Etihad award space is directly on Etihad’s website.
You will need an Etihad Guest account in order to search for award space. Once you sign in to your Etihad Guest account, you can either click on ‘Spend Miles’:
Which will take you to this page, where you want to select ‘Read more’.
Then you will want to scroll down that page and click where directed to book an award ticket.
Alternatively (and much easier), you can select ‘Book now’ from the Etihad Guest homepage.
Both methods will take you to the booking page where you will enter your origin, destination, date(s), cabin and number of travelers.
At this stage it is both helpful and important to know the routes that Etihad flies – particularly those routes to/from the U.S. Those routes include Abu Dhabi (AUH) to:
- New York (JFK)
- Washington, D.C. – Dulles (IAD)
- Chicago (ORD)
- Toronto (YYZ)
- Los Angeles (LAX)
- Dallas/Fort Worth (DFW)
Now that you know the routes to look for, you can start entering in your city pairs to search for availability.
Which will return a results page with two different levels of availability – “GuestSeat” and “OpenSeat”.
American Airlines should have access to any seats listed as available under the “GuestSeat” section. If you see “Sold out” under the “GuestSeat” section, then there are no award seats available on that particular route on the date you have selected.
If you want to search for availability across a range of dates, you can scroll through the calendar that displays above the results.
Thankfully Etihad lists the mileage cost with the calendar so you can pretty quickly and easily see which dates will have “GuestSeat” space available. In this particular example, if a date shows 117,556 miles needed for a redemption, then you know there is “GuestSeat” space available on that particular day.
Remember that the costs shown on the Etihad website are not what you will be charged for your award redemption if you are using AA miles. Instead you will be charged according to the AA award chart. For award tickets booked prior to March 22, 2016, the award chart for flights to the Middle East is as follows:
For award tickets booked after March 22, 2016, the award chart for the Middle East is as follows:
It is worth noting that there are no third region exceptions for routings through the Middle East region from the U.S. That means that unless you are going to the Middle East or one of the following countries, you will be looking at two award tickets if you want to fly Etihad through AUH.
After you have found flights that work and are showing “GuestSeat” availability, all you have to do is write down the dates and flight numbers and then call AA at 800-882-8880 to book!
Booking an award ticket on Etihad Airways using your American Airlines AAdvantage miles can be a relatively straightforward process so long as you know how to search the inventory. Hopefully this guide helps shine some light on that process!
Be sure to follow the Jet Set Blog by entering your e-mail address in the upper right hand corner of this page! Also be sure to like the Points Jet Setter on Facebook and follow @ThePointsJetSet on Twitter!