Beginning January 1, 2013, Emirates will operate two daily A380s from JFK to Dubai, replacing the current second flight operated by a B777-300ER. The flight schedules are already loaded and include the following departures, giving US based passengers both a morning and evening option:
EK201 DXB JFK 0830 1350
EK202 JFK DXB 2300 2030+1
EK203 DXB JFK 0200 0720
EK204 JFK DXB 1040 0810+1
One of my favorite airline award redemptions has been my business class experience on Emirates. The JFK – DXB route is easily one of the most requested redemptions on Juicy Miles and a route I’m emailed quite often about. Readers want to know how to secure a business class seat using their miles. I was lucky enough to redeem with United Mileage Plus prior to UA ending their relationship with Emirates, however there are still a few options out there.
While you can no longer redeem United miles for Emirates flights, you can utilize JAL and Korean awards, with Alaska Airlines coming on board with redemptions in late 2012! JetBlue is also said to be releasing their award redemption chart for Emirates later this year but I’m expecting the pricing to be extremely high. Neither Korean or JAL are great about releasing seats but I’ve recently had better luck with Korean than JAL for business class redemptions. I’ve found sporadic business seats throughout the year on Korean with a few each month (loaded close to departure). A Korean business class redemption costs 140k in business or 210k in first, you’ll need to open a Korean Air account and transfer your Ultimate Rewards points there once you confirm availability on Emirates . If your willing to work a little harder and have some patience, JAL also allows for US redemptions at 130,000 points in business and 180,000 in first (you can transfer via SPG, wait until you confirm availability of course). When Alaska goes live late this year you’ll have several ways to accumulate miles for an Emirates experience (Alaska partners with AA, Delta, BA, Air France, Cathay, and Qantas amongst others). This link will explain more about how to earn enough Ultimate Rewards to get more than halfway towards the 140k (scroll to the bottom for Ultimate Rewards redemption options).
**Update – Beginning October 1st, Emirates will be included on JAL’s distance based award chart which means business class from JFK-DXB will become only 85k miles! If converting from SPG that’s only 70,000 points* See full details on the distance based award travel chart here, this is definitely one of the best redemption options on Emirates**