Emirates A380 Between U.S. and Europe and How to Book Awards

Emirates A380 Between U.S. and Europe


An Emirates A380 will fly its U.S. to Europe route between New York JFK and Milan MXP starting June 1, 2014 per Ben. This is not a new route, since Emirates has flown this Fifth Freedom route since October 2013, but the change to an A380 adds another nice option for those interested in flying First Class to Europe, especially if the destination is Italy and/or for those wanting an onboard shower, as it will be the only one on a commercial flight between the U.S. and Europe.

While I wasn't that impressed with my Emirates A380 First Class flight last year, notably the gaudy cabin and the confused and disorganized service, there's a real lack of good first class products to Europe. My favorite remains Singapore Suites on the A380, and I personally have had good experiences in British Airways New First Class, although it's of course not nearly the same caliber as Singapore Airlines and is regularly panned by critics. 

Here are the details of Emirates' New York – Milan service:

  • EK206 Departs NYC JFK 10:20pm, Arrives Milan MXP 12:15pm the next day
  • EK205 Departs Milan MXP 4:10pm, Arrives New York JFK 7pm

Emirates A380 on the NYC JFK to Milan MXP Route Starts June 1, 2015



How Can These Flights Be Booked as Awards Using Frequent Flyer Miles?

The best option for those without the time or patience to play call center roulette is to book via Japan Airlines JAL Mileage Bank, which charges these amounts for New York to Milan roundtrip, due to this flight falling into the 8001-10,000 miles band:

  • Emirates First Class: 100,000 JAL miles
  • Emirates Business Class: 65,000 JAL miles
  • Emirates Economy Class: 40,000 JAL miles
JAL Mileage Bank Award Chart
It used to be possible to book Emirates First Class and Emirates Business Class with Alaska Mileage Plan miles on Alaska's Web site. Unfortunately, from April 2015 onwards, these awards don't show up on Alaska's Web site and many Alaska call center agents won't book them, telling you they can only book the same awards you see on the Web site. Don't bother arguing with them–thank them for their time and HUCA. That's how I was able to get this Emirates A380 First Class Award Booked
Are One Way Awards Permitted with JAL Mileage Bank?
Yes–as of April 30, 2014, one way partner awards and one way oneworld awards using JAL Mileage Bank miles are permitted. Note however that due to JAL Mileage Bank using a distance based chart, the one way award is NOT merely half the cost of the roundtrip; instead, it falls within the 4001-6000 miles band, which means you'd pay nearly as much for a one way: 90,000 miles for one way in first class, 60,000 miles for one way in business class, and 37,000 miles one way in economy. That means that practically speaking, you'll want to book this award as a roundtrip.


I Don't Have JAL Mileage Bank Miles; Which Miles and Points Transfer to JAL?

Only Starwood SPG Starpoints transfer to JAL, which does make it more challenging for those who don't already have a ton of SPG Starpoints.

How Do I Check Emirates Award Availability?

You'd need to have a subscription or a 5 day free trial for ExpertFlyer to verify award availability. Most dates I checked showed 3 first class award seats and 7 business class award seats, although as I noted above, it can be tough to find an Alaska Airlines agent willing to manually request the award seats for you.

Do you plan to fly Emirates on the A380 between New York JFK and Milan MXP?

Emirates A380 U.S. to Europe

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