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My wife and I try to go on one “long-distance” trip with each of our kids each year. Since we have 6 kids, that means she goes with 3 and I go with 3. We try to let them pick the trips – recently we’ve gone to the Grand Canyon / Hoover Dam, New York City, Stockholm, and Athens and even “faraway” Columbus Ohio :-). My 11 year old daughter has always wanted to fly the Hello Kitty plane on EVA Air, so we have been planning a trip to Asia including Taiwan.
The amazing ANA award chart from the US to Asia
While doing research on the best miles to get to Asia, we came across the ANA Award chart.
Business Class from Zone 6 (North America) to Zone 2 or Zone 3 (China, South Korea, Philippines, Taiwan, Hong Kong) is only 95,000 miles ROUNDTRIP! Compare that to using United miles, which is 80,000 miles ONE WAY.
Transferring to ANA miles
ANA doesn’t have a (good) credit card or easy source of generating points for most of us, so I transferred some of my American Express Membership Rewards. ANA is also a transfer partner of SPG points (but not Citi nor Chase)
Since we’re booking 2 tickets, we needed 190,000 miles
It took about 2-3 days for Amex Membership Rewards to transfer to ANA miles.
Family restrictions for booking ANA awards
ANA has a restriction that you can only book award tickets for family members within 2 generations, including spouses. So your parents and grandparents (including your parents and grandparents-in-law), your siblings and their spouses, and your children and grandchildren (and their spouses). Registered legal partners are also okay.
In my case, I was going with my daughter, so I had to register her with the award user registration service. The link at this time is here, or you can also get to it off of the “My Profile” modal page (looks like the below picture)
You can register up to 10 people, suitable even for “extreme” families like mine. 🙂
Note that ANA also has a Family Account Service, where you can combine miles earned by different family members and costs 1000 miles to enroll. This is NOT what you’re looking for
Finding availability on ANA
I used United’s website to find the availability I needed. I searched segment by segment, even though United’s multi-site search might not show the connecting availability. United.com shows availability for EVA, ANA, Asiana, United, Thai, Air China among others, so pretty much all the partners that you’d need between the US and Asia.
Some of these partners WILL charge $100-$200 in fuel surcharges, so you’ll want to check out the comprehensive guide to fuel surcharges on ANA award tickets to find which partners you want to book. Spoiler alert – Air Canada has none and EVA Airs are cheap. United, ANA, Air China and pretty much everyone else all charge fuel surcharges
Business Class to Asia for 95,000 miles
Here’s an example of our itinerary (not the exact dates / route)
Not bad! We’re excited to go on our trip!
Have you used ANA miles to fly from the US to Asia? Leave your experience in the comments