a bed in a plane

Showers, Dom Perignon, Comfort And Sleep…

Many people crave a shower after a long flight, but few get the opportunity to take on in mid air. Emirates first class delights guests with fully enclosed suites to quite literally block out the world, renowned wines that go for top dollar on the ground, an on board bar to enjoy them and attentive crews to ensure the ultimate pampering. While an around the world ticket, enjoying more than 42 hours of first class treatment would usually run you $20,000 you can live the dream for just 125,000 points.

a city with lights and a mountain in the backgroundAround The World

How about seeing London, Dubai, Seoul or Tokyo, Milan and New York all on the same trip? This is just a single example of the possibilities that exist here. This use of points is all about distance, and you can go anywhere Emirates flies as long as the total distance is less than 20,000 miles in the air. It’s easy to calculate distance using GCmap.com. You can start just about anywhere, and the airline you’ll use to book even has sample itineraries listed! And if you want a preview of the in flight experience, check out this glowing review

a white airplane on a runwayWhat Do You Know About JAL?

You may have heard of JAL, or Japan Airlines, which is a leading Japanese Airline. The airline has a unique frequent flyer partnership with Emirates, and the amount of miles needed for a flight on their partner Emirates is calculated by distance. They happen to have the most favorable distance chart for flying Emirates First Class Suites by a long measure.

a swimming pool and a bed by a houseEasy Enough To Earn…

You can earn JAL miles via SPG or by crediting any OneWorld Airline flight to JAL- so even if you’re flying American, you can be earning JAL miles instead. Since SPG offers a credit card in the US & UK, you can earn SPG miles for your every day spending. When combining miles earned from flights, with credit card points earned from bonuses and spending- there’s a compelling chance here.

a person holding a bottle of wine125,000 or 155,000 Depending How You Go…

If you earn points solely through SPG, you’ll only need 125,000 points to do this. That’s because you get a 5,000 point bonus for every 20,000 you transfer. So 125,000 SPG points will turn into 155,000 JAL “Mileage Bank” points, which you can then use to book Emirates First Class. If you earn JAL miles by flying or their credit card and you earn SPG points, you’ll need somewhere between the 125,000 and 155,000. Simply enough.

a bed in an airplaneHow To Actually Book This Magical Journey…

Once you have your miles firmly in place in the JAL Mileage Bank (it can take up to 10 days to transfer from SPG to JAL, by the way) you’re ready to book. For any flights departing or arriving in the U.S., you can use Alaskaair.com to search. Ignore the prices they quote, just look for the seats. For other flights you can use Qantas.com, again ignoring their prices in miles. Just find the available seats. You can also use ExpertFlyer or AwardNexus to search all routes. Once you’ve found your space- write flight numbers and dates down and call JAL.

Gilbert Ott

Gilbert Ott is an ever curious traveler and one of the world's leading travel experts. His adventures take him all over the globe, often spanning over 200,000 miles a year and his travel exploits are regularly...

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  1. Geez yet another “look at me” in first class on EK. Haven’t we seen enough of these? Frankly I enjoy EK and fly every year at least once, some paid tickets and some points,

    But really can we move on?

    1. Literally… not a clue what you’re talking about, or the point of this comment- other than “look at me” I fly Emirates first class a couple times a year on points and paid tickets. This has post has nothing to do with me, unlike yours.

  2. In your opinion, which is a better option? Both in cost in miles, hard product, ease of booking… (and I would like to get 4 seats for the family)

    This route you just wrote about of going RTW through JAL or using AmEx MR points transfer to ANA to use their RTW ticket? I think ANA would cost about 125k per person in J with 3 to 4 stops.

  3. What I was referring to are the continual posting of flying EK first. You can interpret as you wish I just commented that enough already ! Actually there are better products on the market today as EK is scaling back it’s product if one is talking about pure product offering. In December I am sampling two of those one long haul 787-9 which I am really looking forward to

    1. Ok, definitely see what you mean now. Fair enough and apologies.

      I feel very little choice but to cover the aspirational, even if there’s already been enough about it. It’s still a great mystery to 99% of travelers and a really exciting way to redeem points. I get that it’s not the newest, but it’s still cool and innovative even now. Will be excited to see the new opportunities that arise as new cabins come out.

  4. The concept may not be new, and yes there are some other great products out there, but it’s still valuable content. I have been fortunate enough fly around the world in first class many times (on points) and I still enjoy reading these articles and considering their options. Keep this type of content coming.

  5. I saw your website appear as a listing i might be interested in. Clicked on it and got sucked in. There are many nubes discovering this so keep pumping these out. I’m based in New Zealand and can value in these articles. Great job!

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