First class seat on American Airlines transcon - JFK-LAX/SFO

For many years, it’s been possible to get a couple of fantastic sweet spots out of Etihad Guest by redeeming for American Airlines flight at what many of still call the “old AA award chart” which is by now many, many years ago.

While First Class to Europe for 50,000 Etihad Guest points is sweet for sure, there isn’t much in the way of AA First to Europe left.

But the real sweet spot has been a First Class seat (yes, 3-Cabin First, not Business) on American Airlines from JFK/BOS/MIA – LAX/SFO for just 25,000 miles, a fraction of American Airlines’ own price.

I’ve Instagrammed about it more than once and always feel good when someone tells me they’ve booked it. 

I describe how to do it in this Instagram Reel


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by Dave Grossman ✈️ MilesTalk (@milestalk)

And I’ve also shared exactly how to find that Z class space in this post on finding American Airlines award booking codes for booking with partner miles.

Well, this may or may not be coming to an end. Etihad Guest sent out emails today that they are going to be creating a unified and distance based award chart. This will likely eliminate Etihad Guest sweet spots like the one above and also the insanely cheap 44,000 mile flight on Royal Air Maroc from JFK to Casablanca in Business Class.

The good news? You’ll be able to book American Airlines flights online – finally – which will save you a good half hour…. but only if the redemption remains worthwhile. In any event, AA will be phasing out those 3 class transcon planes soon – I last heard by the end of 2024.

According to our matrix of transferable points, Etihad is a transfer partner of both American Express Membership Rewards and Capital One Miles

This change goes into affect March 10th, 2023. I have no idea if we’ll see the new charts before then.


Let me know below in the comments, on Twitter, or in the private MilesTalk Facebook group. And don't forget to follow me on Instagram for all sorts of tips on miles, points, credit cards, and travel.

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