One of the most attractive award charts out there for travel around India, is that of Etihad Airways, which offers some sweet redemptions on Jet Airways. Check out this PDF here which lists the routes and mileage requirements per sector.

I have had the intention to use this chart to book tickets on Jet Airways, but never had any sectors to try it out on, since revenue tickets are usually cheap enough. Recently, however, I was in a situation where I needed to book up family for an up coming trip, and revenue tickets were expensive, and this was the perfect time to try out this method.

I call the Etihad award chart sweet, because it has some real gems in terms of redemption values. For instance, a Lucknow-Mumbai one way economy class redemption, which costs 8,500 JPMiles or 9,500 Air India miles for travel on the respective airlines (apart from taxes on both airlines), comes out at 5660 Etihad Guest Miles for a one way economy ticket, and only taxes need to be paid, so you come out ahead in terms of the number of miles required.

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How do you look up for tickets?

The easiest way to look for award inventory is to look up on the JetPrivilege site to see if award inventory exists on your particular route, and you will be able to find out the flights there itself. In my limited experience so far, availability for Etihad Guest members matches the availability for JP’s own members.

Call up Etihad Guest to book your tickets

With Etihad, you can’t book tickets online for your Jet Airways redemption seats, hence you need to call them in. In my case, I asked the agent for available flights on the sector required, and it turned out to be the same as the one I had checked on the JP website earlier. So, I gave them the name of the passengers, which enabled them to create the PNR. I was subsequently informed about the mileage requirements and the amount of taxes I had to pay, which again matched the Jet amount, or was rather slightly lesser than that.

Etihad duly sent me a copy of the PNR, and informed me that I would receive a callback to collect the taxes on my credit card and issue the tickets. While the call did not come in the 1 hour period promised, it did come a few hours later and I gave them all the details for my credit card and they were able to charge it and issue the tickets for me.

Watch out for these

You can only book tickets 14 days or more out for flights on Jet Airways. Yesterday, I tried booking a redemption for next week, and Etihad declined my request. Also, tickets booked are non-refundable, so you forfeit your miles in case you can’t travel on those tickets. You can change dates of course, subject to availability. For the first date change, it is free. For the second date change onwards, you need to pay 100 UAE Dirhams per passenger to get it executed.

So, only try this as long as you have a great amount of certainty that your plans won’t change, and you would be able to land a great deal on some award tickets for yourself.

Do remember, Etihad Guest is a transfer partner with Citibank (Prestige & PremierMiles) and American Express in India, and if you complete a transfer by 30 Nov 2014 to Etihad Guest, you get a bonus from Etihad.

I fid this to be a great way to use Etihad Guest miles. Have you booked any tickets on 9W with your EY miles yet? Do share your experiences here.

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Posted by Ajay Awtaney | 17 Comments

Etihad has been undergoing a secret makeover for months, but they don’t make a secret of it when they are ready. As a 11-year young airline, I really love their luxury product in the First Class, however, they’ve been upping the game with their new cabin products, including the Residence which they will launch on their A380 later this year.

Not just that. There has been a lot of discussion around the interwebs of a new livery that would come in on the new planes. I absolutely love the old one, but the new livery was just introduced a couple of days back on the A380 that Etihad has on order…

etihad a380

And then just a short while back, on the Boeing 787

Etihad 787

And of course, it looks stunning. This livery, bearing the Desert Diamond tail, has been designed by Landor Associates, one of the renowned brand consulting firms, which also counts Jet Airways, Cathay Pacific and Singapore Airlines amongst its clients.

The new livery draws its colour scheme from the old one, bringing in colours such as copper, slate and caramel from the current livery. It is being called the Facets of Abu Dhabi.

The new livery will be rolled out across the existing 100 planes of Etihad over the next 3 years. Here are some cool videos introducing the livery as well:


The Etihad A380 starts to fly between Abu Dhabi and London Heathrow from December 27, 2014 and as more planes get delivered, they also go to Melbourne, New York, Paris and Sydney.

The Etihad B787 will start to fly between Abu Dhabi and Dusseldorf in December 2014, and then they send the plane to Mumbai and also to Washington DC for a month each.

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Etihad is trying to be a prominent player in India, and in this regard, they are working out as hard as they can to get an uptick on traffic from India. Considering they now majorly own the JetPrivilege program, they in a way, JP Miles are also a sort of Etihad currency.

Etihad is offering double miles in the JetPrivilege program, or the Etihad Guest program, if you book your tickets between September 22 and October 6, 2014 and travel between September 23, 2014 to December 15, 2014. To participate in this promotion, you need to register beforehand using your Etihad/JP number, at this link.

The promotion is valid for Etihad Airways flights on any destination on the Etihad Global Network, only when booked as a revenue ticket and as an Etihad flight (not as a codeshare). Applicable for travel in the Economy, Business and First Class.

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Posted by Ajay Awtaney | 2 Comments

Last year, Etihad completed the purchase of 24% equity stake in Jet Airways, as a part of building its own equity alliance. As a part of the alliance, usually most other airlines enter into a reciprocity with Etihad’s own loyalty program whereby the guests of both programs are granted privileges on each other’s metal. With […]

Posted by Ajay Awtaney | 5 Comments

Etihad has been silent for the longest time on a cabin refresh, and yesterday, they shared details of what could be the most luxurious products in the air. Stay with me, they are creating, Apartments and full Residences in the air. Also Studios. The Suites class product is a few year old, and Etihad has […]

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Not so long ago in January 2014, the US Customs & Border Patrol Pre-clearance facility at Abu Dhabi was established. Now, Etihad put up a new short and sweet video on their website to show how it works (no wonders here). The details are however more interesting. Etihad now operates multiple flights to the USA. […]

Posted by Ajay Awtaney | 2 Comments

[Update: Deal now appears to be pulled] A new fare has emerged for travel from Colombo to Dallas/Fort Worth and back to Colombo, which includes Business Class on Sri Lankan/Etihad, First Class on Etihad and First Class on American Airlines, which is $1450 all inclusive. For positioning, Indians could always use a flight from Jet […]

Posted by Ajay Awtaney | 10 Comments

Jet Airways has completed the induction of Etihad Airways as a 24% shareholder in the airline, following the initial announcement of this deal in April 2013. Under the deal, Jet Airways issued new shares to Etihad Airways, and the stake of the founder/promoter of the airline, Naresh Goyal, is now down to 51%. James Hogan, […]

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With rapid progress being made on the Jet Airways equity alliance with Etihad Airways (the deal is expected to go through by September 30), details have begin to emerge about the commercial cooperation between 9W and EY. The fear of this being just one-sided and everyone travelling on EY metal after changing planes at Abu […]

Posted by Ajay Awtaney | 2 Comments

Jet Airways might as well become the the first of the Indian carriers to get a foreign equity investment, with the Jet – Etihad deal moving in the forward direction today after being stalled for a while. For a quick recap, Jet Airways agreed to sell 24% stake in the airline, majority stake in loyalty […]

Posted by Ajay Awtaney | 4 Comments

Introduction & Trip Index <Etihad First Class Lounge, Abu Dhabi              Holiday Inn, LaGuardia Airport> Like I earlier mentioned, by the time I went through the secondary check gates (for US-bound flights), and reached the gates, boarding was already underway and I queued through a bunch of economy passengers to get […]

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