Oct272016

$350 United tickets to Europe Wednesday (and I paid $691 on Monday)

Yesterday there was a sale for about 12 hours with United/Star Alliance dropping round trip ticket prices to Amsterdam, Paris, Rome and several other cities in Italy, like Venice and Florence, down to around $350 to $400 from Delta Airlines hubs in Atlanta, Detroit, Minneapolis and Salt Lake City. I saw the sale posted on Frequent Miler just before going off to work at my wife’s school. Working with her for two days are the dues I have to pay after finally telling her last week that I am going to New Zealand next week on a $240 round trip ticket I bought last April. I had no time to write about the Star Alliance low fares Europe deal on Loyalty Traveler yesterday and no time to book any tickets for myself. All I managed were a couple of tweets.

$350 to Europe is a great deal for people in Atlanta, Detroit, Minneapolis and Salt Lake City. For me, the deal would have taken an additional $174 to get a round trip ticket San Jose to Salt Lake City for a total price of $524 round trip to Amsterdam. A winter trip San Francisco to London is a trip I planned earlier this week for winter 2017 with ticket prices to fly United Airlines from $601 (Momondo.com) or United ($691). I booked the $691 ticket for myself and redeemed a $400 UA travel credit. I booked $45 tickets on British Airways from London to Amsterdam.

I am not too bothered about missing this Star Alliance deal to Europe. This was a great deal opportunity, but a deal I figured would be gone by the time I was back home on my computer 10 hours later. The ticket prices jumped from $350-$400 to $1,000+ before 12 noon California time.

There have been a few times in 2016 when fares dropped to under $400 to Europe from the west coast. There was a week when Dublin was on sale from various places around the country in the mid $300s. There have been repeated sales the past few months with ticket prices in the $400s to Amsterdam and Paris with all three alliances from Icelandair hubs in Seattle, Portland, Chicago, Denver, New York, Washington DC and Boston.

Here is one of the deals available today from Denver to Paris in the upper $477-$487 with all three alliances for March 2017 travel.

DEN-CDG $477 all alliances March 2017

Frequent travelers to Europe can find lower fares most days from Europe to places across the USA.

My travel pattern the past two years is frequent travel to Europe, like six trips per year. The low fare strategy I find effective for me is buying most of my tickets starting in Europe and flying to San Francisco. I have been able to travel at peak holiday periods of Thanksgiving and Christmas and summer with round trip fares in the $400s on most tickets and even some tickets priced in the $300s for trips like Bergen-San Francisco on American ($376), Amsterdam to Las Vegas on American ($422), Stockholm to San Francisco ($479) SAS.

These deals for low cost Europe to California round trip tickets are frequently offered. Most of the low fare deals from California to Europe last only a day or two every couple months.

United Airlines Copenhagen – San Francisco

$453.90 USD round trip (3,091 DKK)  Thu Mar 9 – Tue Mar 21

CPH-SFO 3091DKK $454 UA Mar9-21

I could probably find another six cities in Europe with similar fares today for round trip tickets to San Francisco and Los Angeles.

$350 for Salt Lake City or Atlanta to Paris was a great deal with United Airlines and Star Alliance, if you are in those cities and you were able to plan a trip quickly in a few hours while the deal was available.

For me, as a frequent traveler to Europe, I like the option to plan my trips with tickets starting in Europe and no time pressure on ticketing. The deals from Europe to California are available most days of the week during most weeks of the year. No need to rush through trip plans trying to land a $350 ticket before the low fare deal is gone.

I’d rather have lots of time to plan dates and itineraries before booking my airline tickets for Europe than save $100 to $150 to get a great deal on an airline ticket for a hastily planned trip that might not be well thought out before hitting the purchase button.

 

About Ric Garrido

Ric Garrido of Monterey, California started Loyalty Traveler in 2006 for traveler education on hotel and air travel, primarily using frequent flyer and frequent guest loyalty programs for bargain travel. Loyalty Traveler joined BoardingArea.com in 2008.

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