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Act fast – View From The Wing found some award space on United’s non-stop Newark (EWR) to Johannesburg (JNB) near the end of the schedule in Nov 2021.
For just 70,000 miles each way, you can fly Polaris Business class on the 787-9 Dreamliner. The seats would be similar to this ride I took from NY to LA on the 787-10.
It’s nearly impossible to ever find Saver space on this route, so if you can go, you might want to jump on this.
Of course, you can transfer your Chase Ultimate Rewards to United instantly, so that makes this pretty simple.
The way to search is using flexible dates, but limited to non-stop availability.
Then just be sure to select the non-stop option, and not any of the Ethiopian Airlines, Swiss or Lufthansa which would require a connection and add quite a bit to your flight time.
As this is Saver space, you should be able to also book this via any of your favorite Star Alliance programs, like Avianca or Aeroplan.
Again, United pretty much never releases saver space on this 14 hour non-stop route, and Delta from Atlanta is equally rare. So if South Africa is in your plans, take a look if the dates work for you.
Let me know if you book!
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New to all of this? My “introduction to miles and points” book, MilesTalk: Live Your Wildest Travel Dreams Using Miles and Points is available on Amazon and at major booksellers.