Without a doubt the best possible commercial travel experience comes in the form of the Etihad Residence, the multi room compartment on an A380, with its own butler and chef, which goes for roughly £21,000 ($30,000) one way. Short of that, the second best, without a doubt, is the Etihad First Class Apartment, complete with sitting area and separate bed, which generally goes for about £3,500 ($5,000) one way. Here's how to fly it round trip for just £1,500 ($2,150) between London and Abu Dhabi starting in either direction...
Intriguing, How Can You Guarantee Just £1500?
Using miles works very differently than using cash. Whereas the cost in cash for these First Class Apartment flights could range from £6,000 to £12,000 round trip, using miles from Etihad's partner American, you guarantee a rate of 62,500 miles each way per person, which you can use cash to buy instantly, locking in the deal.
Ah, Amazing. Where Do I Buy The Miles?
American is currently offering their lowest price on miles in history. That's good news because it drops the price nicely to almost spot on £3,000 to buy 250,000 miles. Enough for one person to fly the First Class Apartment round trip twice, or two people to do it together once. You can buy those miles instantly HERE.
Now The (Not So) Complicated Part...
The downside to using miles is that unlike cash, you can't just book any flight you'd like. You're going to need to find space when using miles is available. Fortunately, there's often very decent availability between London and Abu Dhabi starting in either direction. To find space, you'll need to create a free Etihad Guest account so you can look at space using their miles, even though you're not using their miles. You're searching for "Guest Seat" space in First Class. When you see it, you can book it with your newly minted American Airlines miles. Join Etihad's program for free so you can search HERE.
Ok, I Have The Miles, I Found The Space, How Do I Finish Booking?
Easy! Write down the dates and flight numbers where you've found "Guest Seat" availability when searching on Etihad.com. Once you have that ready, simply call American Airlines, at your local number listed HERE, to complete your booking. If for any reason they have trouble seeing the availability you see, try their Australian call center (perhaps by Skype), which seems to show everything perfectly.