Award Travel, How to, tips
Links need to be fixed. Haven't figured out the wiki-links yet. -Chaikel
Q: How many miles will my USA-TLV ticket cost?
Q: How can I use my credit card points to book a USA-TLV ticket?
A: Please read Dan's very helpful and informative guides found here and here
Q: Do I have to pay a lot of money when using miles for a ticket?
A: Sometimes. For more information read this
Q: How do I find award availability?
A: For Star Alliance (Continental, United, USairways, AirCanada, Lufthansa, Swiss, and others) see this guide
For OneWorld (AmericanAirlines, BritishAirways, Iberia, Malev, and more) You can use BA's award search engine (you need to have a free BA account to access the engine). In addition you can use Qantas' engine (free account needed as well), which will (to an extent) search Elal. As of this posting, the Elal business flights that show up are coach, and vice verse.
For Delta and AirFrance, use their respective sites. While not perfect, they are quite manageable for the casual searcher.
And of course, many of us here will take time out to help someone who is trying to learn.
Q: All this searching is making me crazy. Is there an easier way?
A: Yes, but it might cost you. Check out AwardNexus.com, and KVStool.com
Q: I see AirCanada availability, but when I call AirCanada they say I can't use my Continental miles with them. Aren't they partners?
A: You can only use miles with the airline that issued them. Through that airline (in our case Continental) they can issue a ticket on a partner (ie AirCanada). Trying to call AirCanada with Continental miles, is like trying to use shekels in Mexico.
Q: I can't find availability on my dates. What should I do?
A: You should try to be as flexible as possible. Can you add a stop or 2? Can you be more flexible with your dates? The airports? If all else fails keep trying. Availability is constantly opening up.