Home Points & Miles Why I Booked A Trip To Japan That I Don’t Plan On Taking

Why I Booked A Trip To Japan That I Don’t Plan On Taking

by joeheg

I’ve written quite a bit about our trip to Japan that was initially planned for the end of 2020. When that didn’t happen, I rescheduled it for a few weeks from now. That’s also not happening, and since we have plans for a cruise and trip to Hawaii in 2022, Japan will get pushed to 2023.

The plan was to find space on Japan Airlines using American Airlines miles. One of the sweet spots of the AAdvantage program is the price for award flights to Asia. A flight to Japan in business class only costs 60,000 miles.

I have been reading plenty of rumors about American Airlines and the AAdvantage program recently and it’s not good news. The whispers are saying that American will change redemption pricing so that it’s linked more to the ticket price.

Who knows what American will start charging for flights to Asia in business class on its flights or those operated by alliance partners, but prices will surely not go down.

Since I can’t book a flight for a date in 2023 which I don’t even know yet, I can do the next best thing. I booked a flight for a random date in 2022 for 60K miles.

The AAdvantage program allows you to make changes to tickets as long as you’re not changing the cities, class or service, or passengers traveling. Hopefully, this means that I’ll eventually be able to change these flights on this reservation to the dates in 2023 that I need and still pay the same number of points. At the moment, all I have tied up in the tickets is $11.20 in fees. Since I could only find flights on AA and not on Japan Airlines, I might be stuck flying with them for the trip but that’s a reasonable trade-off to lock in a price this far away from a trip.

I have this post on Frequent Miler to thank for the idea but I’m not about to make almost 600K miles worth of reservations for flights I might take, as Greg did. If this plan doesn’t seem to be working out, I can always cancel the flight and get my miles and fees back.

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This post first appeared on Your Mileage May Vary


swag October 19, 2021 - 9:48 am

Isn’t the rule that travel must be completed within a year of original ticketing date? So you can change that ticket, but only up until October 2022.

joeheg October 19, 2021 - 1:39 pm

I will look into that. At the time I was in a book now, ask questions later mode.

JohnB October 19, 2021 - 2:53 pm

Your new ticket is only good for one year. When you go to change the dates to 2023. They will redeposit the miles and the new tickets will be at the award cost. A better idea is to try for an ANA award to Japan using Virgin’s miles. Roundtrip in First is only 120K. Business I think is 95K. So far they have not changed the award chart and I don’t they will until after Japan is open for tourism for awhile.

Dublin October 19, 2021 - 12:36 pm

I have to tell you I’m a little bugged by this. You’re simply taking a seat away from someone else who may actually want to go on the trip. It’s not like they’re going to add another seat because you’ve taken one. I know it’s within the rules I get all that but for some reason it just kind of rubs me a little wrong

joeheg October 19, 2021 - 1:40 pm

I understand that feeling. If it makes any difference, I did pick a date with several seats open for awards, so I’m not taking the last one.

Dublin October 20, 2021 - 8:00 am

That’s cool. At least you get my point. It’s a tough call


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