How I Flew to Paris for $85 Roundtrip and You Can Too!

A few months ago, my sister (and fellow points junkie) asked if I wanted to go to Paris in the Fall, just the two of us, no kids, a girl’s trip! Now, the normal answer would be “there’s no way I can afford it, flights are too expensive, I have to feed my kids, etc!” But, when you’re paying in points and miles the answer is always YES! YES! YES!

On the agenda: see the Eiffel Tower and eat a chocolate crepe every day!

American Airlines Off-Peak Awards

One of the things I love about American Airlines is that they offer off-peak awards. This means you spend fewer miles to travel during their off-peak dates. While this post will cover off-peak award travel to Europe, you can locate American’s off-peak chart here to find out how to save miles to Hawaii, South America, Asia and the Caribbean.

On American, you always want to find the MileSAAver awards. They are the lowest redemption you can find with American. You’ll spend significantly more miles if you purchase an AAnytime Award, so remember – only book MileSAAver awards!!!

AA Miles required US to Europe: 30,000 miles one way (60K miles roundtrip)

AA Miles required US to Europe Off Peak: 22,500 miles one way (45K miles roundtrip) – Off-Peak Dates: January 10 – March 14, November 1 – December 14

By flying during off-peak dates, we’re saving 15K miles roundtrip! That’s huge!

Our Flight Details:

Here is the breakdown of our flight including miles required and cost of taxes and fees.

Now, if we were paying cash for the same flight, this is what it would look like:


Without miles and points, I would have spent $1400 for the same flight! No Thanks!

How can you fly to Paris (or Europe) for $85??

Right now, the easiest way to earn AAdvantage miles is by applying for the Barclay Aviator card. You’ll earn 60,000K AA miles (enough for a roundtrip to Europe Off-Peak or otherwise) just by making ONE PURCHASE! This card can’t be beat. Normally, you need to spend $3,000 in 3 months to earn miles. But with this card you only have to make one purchase and pay the $95 annual fee. So, apply for the Aviator card (for you and your partner if you’re playing in 2-Player Mode), buy a Coke, wait for your miles to appear in your account and Book Your Trip to Europe!!

But wait, I have a family of four, how do we earn enough miles for all us? Lucky for you, there’s more than one credit card that offers American Airline miles. Apply for the Citi AAdvantage MasterCard You’ll earn 60,000K miles after spending $3,000 in 3 months and paying the annual fee.

Assuming you and your partner each apply for the Barclay Aviator and the Citi AAdvantage card – you’ll have a whopping 240,000 American miles. That’s enough miles for 4 people to fly to Europe ANYTIME or enough miles for 4 to fly to Europe off-peak and still have 60,000 AA miles left over for your next trip!

Coming Next: How we stayed 4 nights in Paris for less than $20!







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