Tag Archives | airfare

American Airlines Restricts Ticket Sales in Argentina

I haven’t even been back in Argentina a full day and the dollar blue hits a record high of $15! That’s immediately followed by American Airlines announcing that they are restricting ticket sales in Argentina. Ahh, financial uncertainty how I’ve missed you.

We used to be so happy together.

We used to be so happy together.

American Airlines will no longer sell tickets to or from Argentina for purchase in pesos for more than 90 days out. Want to fly from Buenos Aires to New York after December 18? Sorry, you’ll have to choose a different airline (while you can).

American is implementing this measure because of the widening gap between the official exchange rate ($8.43) and the blue rate ($15.00). Without knowing where this will end up, they do not want to get stuck holding pesos that become more and more worthless everyday.

So, here’s why American Airlines is not happy (and how you can benefit)…

Assume I want to go from Buenos Aires (EZE) to Miami (MIA) for a week in October. If I”m on the American Airlines website in the United States, the fare comes out to U$S 1213. Switching my country to Argentina, I find the same flight for U$S 1688 (higher due to the 35% Argentine tax on travel). Which one do I book?

Well, paying for that U$S 1688 flight on my Argentine credit card, I’d get billed at the official exchange rate, and end up with a charge of ARS $14,230. Now, if I convert my dollars at the blue rate to pay off the credit card, I’d only owe U$S 949. That’s a savings of almost 25% off the flight for me!

The 35% travel tax implemented by the government last December was designed to make this practice less attractive, but since the gap between the official rate and blue rate keeps widening, this is once again an attractive option for booking tickets.

Only time will tell what happens next…

UPDATE: Here’s American Airlines policy that was sent to ticket agents:

Argentina Point of Sale Restrictions
September 26, 2014
American Airlines has implemented sales restrictions for Argentina point-of-sale on our flights to/from Buenos Aires (EZE), Argentina.  These sales restrictions do not apply to point-of-sale outside of Argentina.

Reservations can still be made or ticketed for travel on American and American codeshare (AA*/OA) flights for departures prior to:

·       84 days for flights departing EZE
·       90 days for flights arriving into EZE

Reservations cannot be made or ticketed for travel on American or American codeshare flights (AA*/OA) for departures more than:
·       84 days for flights departing EZE
·       90 days for flights arriving into EZE
American will not accept bookings on other airlines with Argentina point-of-sale.


Fly Business Class To Or From Buenos Aires for $1881

US Airways Bonus MilesUS Airways is once again offering a 100% bonus on purchased miles. With this promotion, you can buy 50,000 US Airways miles for $1881 and get an additional 50,000 free. That’s enough for a low mileage business class ticket to or from Buenos Aires (and many other places as well).

Business class seats routinely sell for upwards of $3800 each, so this is a great value. Plus, if you look at the normal cost of a coach ticket (around $1400) and add in the excess baggage fees, you’ll find that you’re probably already close to the cost of flying business and getting the additional luggage allowances as well.

Now, US Airways does not have a lot of flights to Buenos Aires, but since they’re part of Star Alliance, you’ll find that their partners do have a good amount of award space. Simply search for low mileage award space at United.com, find the flights you want, call up US Airways and book the ticket on a partner airline like United or Copa. You can read this guide for the exact steps involved, or follow this one for a brief primer on how to search for award space. Note that they do have a $50 phone booking fee for international flights that cannot be avoided.

This offer expires on August 31, 2013, and you must have been a Dividend Miles member for 12 days in order to purchase miles, so you’d better create an account right away if you do not have one. It also helps to have a flexible schedule in order to find the lowest mileage days.

If you do not have any upcoming trips planned, this may be a good way to bulk up your American Airlines miles as well. The US Airways and American Airlines merger is schedule to be completed at the end of this year and all these US Airways miles should convert to American miles at that time. This is a bit speculative but could be very worthwhile as American has some great off-season mileage deals to Argentina.

I’ll be taking advantage of this promotion and helping to meet the minimum spending requirements on my recent credit card app-o-rama too. Go buy your miles now!


Fly Miami To Lima One Way From $139 – Connect To Buenos Aires For A $717 Roundtrip Deal

jetBlue Fare SaleUPDATE: This deal is dead.

Jet Blue is having a sale on their new route from Fort Lauderdale to Lima, Peru from only $139 each way ($302 roundtrip all-in). Their new route starts November 21, 2013 and these prices are available through December 31, 2013.

You can add on a roundtrip to Buenos Aires from Lima for $415 and get a complete roundtrip from Miami to Buenos Aires for about $717. Not a bad deal…

UPDATE: American Airlines is also running a fare sale to Latin America, but unfortunately not to Buenos Aires. You can however fly coach from New York or Miami to Montevideo from $931 and (even better) business class from only $1949. Tickets must be purchased by May 8, 2013 for travel between May 15 and June 6, 2013.


Great Deal Alert: Fly New York to Montevideo for $374

New York to Montevideo Airfare DealUPDATE: This deal is dead.

Copa Airlines currently has fares from New York (JFK) to Montevideo, Uruguay (MVD) for only $374 including all taxes and fees. This is a pretty amazing price, and if you have friends who want to get to Buenos Aires, it’s only a short plane or ferry ride from Montevideo.

To find dates that this fare is available, search on ITA Matrix and select “See calendar of lowest fares” around the dates you’re interested in. Once you find the fare you want, you’ll need to book it on Orbitz or another site as ITA does not handle bookings.

Thanks to The Points Guy for pointing out this deal. His site also has more detailed instructions on searching for these fares and booking them. There are a lot of available dates at the moment, but I’d hurry as a price like this cannot last.