Get your affiliate bookings now: Etihad Guest is simplifying its award table

There is big (and probably bad) news from Etihad Guest. While the loyalty program is notorious for astronomically dynamic award rates on its own flights (think 1 million miles from the US to Abu Dhabi, UAE, in business class), it also has some fantastic partner sweet spots.

On Monday, Etihad Guest’s One Mile at a Time and LoyaltyLobby reported plans to simplify its partners’ award tables and make American Airlines and Virgin Australia award bookings available online. TPG has contacted Etihad for confirmation but has not yet received a response.

The new simplified awards table will go into effect on March 10th, although you don’t want to wait until the last minute to make final redemptions using the current table. Here’s what these changes could mean for you.

New Etihad Guest award table

A recent Etihad Guest sweet spot is American Airlines’ flagship First. KYLE OLSEN/THE POINTS GUY

Etihad Guest currently has a different award table for each of its partners. With a new zone-based award table, award rates are the same for all Etihad partners. In other words, if you’re traveling to Europe from New York, expect to spend the same number of miles if you choose American Airlines or Brussels Airlines (both Etihad Guest partners).

In principle, it makes sense to have a single zone-based award table that applies to all Etihad Guest partners.

But with a single zone-based award table, Etihad Guest’s partner sweet spots are in jeopardy. Through Etihad Guest I booked a first class American Airlines flight from Los Angeles to Sydney for just 62,500 miles. Other Etihad Guest partner sweet spots include Brussels Airlines flights from the United States to Brussels for just 44,000 miles each way in business class.

We already know that Etihad Guest can charge exorbitant prices for many of its own premium cabin awards, which makes us pessimistic about the upcoming simplified award schedule.

Etihad systems will be taken offline from March 8th. So make sure you make all bookings before March 8th using the current award tables.

Matching this: 9 fantastic first-class seats that you can still book with points and miles

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Partner bookings online


As part of the changes, Etihad Guest will soon be able to book American Airlines and Virgin Australia flights on its website. This is a welcome addition as calling to book awards involves more hassle and can increase the chance of errors (e.g. misspelling a name).

However, you must still call and speak to an Etihad Guest phone representative to redeem Etihad Guest miles for other partner flights.

See also: Sweet Spot Sunday: Fly 62,500 miles to Europe with American Airlines Flagship First

bottom line

From March 10th, Etihad Guest will use a new zone-based rewards table for all partner rewards. It’s unclear what this rewards table will include and how it will impact some of our favorite Etihad Guest points.

My advice, if you have Etihad Guest Miles, book one or more partner award tickets now before the new award table is published. Check out our Etihad Guest Miles strategies post for ideas.

Two months ago I transferred Capital One miles to Etihad Guest to secure a redemption of 17.3 cents per Capital One mile for an American Airlines Flagship First flight to Australia. I will definitely be looking for quality partner flights to book with Etihad Guest before the changes take effect on March 10th.

If you need to fund your Etihad Guest account for a redemption, please note that transfers from American Express Membership Rewards, Capital One and Citi ThankYou Rewards are usually instant.

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