How I booked Cathay Pacific First Class for $282

Cathay Pacific is known for having a fantastic first class product. It's arguably the best way to fly between North America and Asia, though not cheap; a round trip ticket from YVR - HKG comes in at over $12,000! 

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The easiest way to book on points is through British Airways paying with Avios, its simple and can be done online. Here in Canada, Avios are quite easy to accumulate -  they transfer 1:1 from AMEX Membership Rewards and RBC Rewards if you have an Avion Product. Several times a year, they also offer transfer bonuses of up to 50%!

While it's easy to book through BA, Alaska Air offers an unbeatable redemption. At just 70,000 AS miles each way, thats a value of over 8.5ccp to Hong Kong. They also allow a free stopover on a one way award, so you can book North America - HKG, stop for however long, and continue on to the Middle East, Africa or elsewhere in Asia at no extra cost. If your journey starts from a different city from where you live (say SFO instead of YVR), Alaska will fly you there on the same ticket for just the taxes.  We'll talk about how to earn AS miles in a future post. 

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I searched for availability on BA's site, and called Alaska to book. There routing is YVR-SEA-SFO on AS, SFO-HKG CX F, stopover (separate ticket HKG-DXB-HKG), HKG-JNB-HKG CX J, stop, HKG-YVR CX F. The total ticket cost in cash would have been just over $36,000 CAD, and I paid just 140k AS Miles, 120k Avios and $385 in taxes and fees. 

Have you flown Cathay Pacific First Class? Leave any tips & comments down below, and travel the world with me -  one flight, hotel & city at a time. 

- IP

What is Travel Hacking?

travel hacking (verb)
trav·el hak·ing

- the art of using points and miles to travel the world in luxury for little to no cost

Have you ever dreamed of flying first or business class? Staying in a 5 star hotel? Can't afford it? Well then travel hacking may be for you. 

It's essentially a way to travel the world in luxury at little to no cost; let me explain. The world of points and miles can be quite complicated, which is why not a ton of people get great value from them. If you know what you're doing however, you may be able to book a Round the World ticket, all in F (first class) or J (business class) for less than the cost of a roundtrip economy ticket across Canada.  

There are many ways to earn airline miles, and you don't even need any "butt in seat" time. Credit card sign-up bonuses can be extremely lucrative, which is how many people are able to experience luxury travel. Certain cards are better than others, such as the American Express Business Platinum card. 

    AMEX Business Platinum Card

    AMEX Business Platinum Card

Though the card may come with a CAD $399 AF (annual fee), it offers a signup bonus of 75,000 AMEX Membership Rewards points (through this special link - regular offer is only 40,000 points) when you spend CAD $5000 within the first 3 months. Thats enough to fly to Europe on Lufthansa in F, one of the most coveted redemptions out there. 

Some of the other benefits of this card include Centurion Lounge Access, Priority Pass membership, Concierge Service, AMEX Fine Hotels & Resorts access and much more. 

Travel hacking has allowed me to book some truly incredible trips in 2018, so stay tuned for more. If you have any questions, comments, or tips, please leave a comment below or use the "Contact" page. 

27,000 miles in J for CAD $500 using points and miles. Stay tuned to learn how. Image courtesy of GCmap.com

27,000 miles in J for CAD $500 using points and miles. Stay tuned to learn how. Image courtesy of GCmap.com