Every mileage currency has some sweet spots and "Etihad guest miles" are no exception. Ideally folks would not want to collect the "Etihad guest miles" but knowing where the value lies you might be able to decide if it's worth having them for specific redemption. As of starter if you are based in USA you can transfer Citi ThankYou Points or SPG Points in "Etihad guest miles" program at 1:1 ratio. In fact as with other partner airlines transferring SPG points in 20,000 increment will fetch 25,000 miles so your ratio could be as good as 1:1.25.
The focus of the post is to list the Etihad guest airline partners and how to get value out of your Etihad guest miles. First of all let me list the airline partners for redemption: You can click "know more" on each of the partners on this link to see redemption details.
Preferred Airline Partners:
As you can see that's a pretty long list. Also mind you each partner has their own redemption chart, so it might take you some time to wade through the redemption tables for each one of them, but in general below are the rules of award redemption for partner airlines (Mind you that these are general rules for all airlines and there might be additional rules specific to given airline partner):
Award Redemption Rules (general):
How to book partner airline award redemption?
Unfortunately you cannot do partner award redemption online. You need to call Etihad guest support on +1888 8 ETIHAD or 877 690 0767 and luckily they are open 24 hours. It would also be prudent to verify if the award you are looking for is available (usually saver level awards is what Etihad can book) by checking on the partners web site or paid tools like Expert Flyer or KVS.
How many miles does Etihad charge?
Most of the partner redemption chart are distance based (except few airlines including American Airlines). That means short distance flights which are otherwise expensive can give you best buck for your miles. That being said, below are few examples airlines, redemption on which could be a good value:
Jet Airways Award redemption for International or Domestic Travel:
You could book one-way from Colombo (CMB) in to Chennai (MAA) in Coach for just 3103 Etihad guest miles and with NO Colombo Sales City tax of ~$60. The same would cost 4500 British Avios with additional $60 if redeemed on SriLankan Airlines.
Garuda Indonesia redemption for short distances:
For e.g. you can book Bali (DPS) to Surabaya (SUB) flight for only 5000 Etihad guest miles.
American Airlines for North America to South America (Zone 1):
You can redeem 17.5k Etihad guest miles for travel from North America to South America (Zone 1) one way in coach.
As you can see from some examples there are definitely some value to be had with Etihad partner redemption if you do not mind calling their redemption center. So, there are definite sweet spots that can be utilized using Etihad guest miles.
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