Qatar AAdvantage Awards offer some routing exceptions, when both flights are on Qatar. Now that there are no more AAdvantage Explorer Awards and we're stuck with American Airline's restrictive third region routing rules, this is important to know, for anyone seeking to redeem their AAdvantage miles (for example from the 100K Citi Executive AAdvantage card).
AAdvantage Award Routing Rules
Award travel via a third region is NOT allowed except for the following routing exceptions:
- North America to/from Africa may transit Europe
- North America to/from India / Middle East may transit Europe
- North America to/from Asia 2 may transit Asia 1
- Europe to/from Asia 1 may transit Asia 2
- Europe to/from South Pacific may transit SIN or BKK
- South America 1 to/from Africa may transit Europe
- South America 1 or South America 2 to/from India / Middle East may transit Europe
- Asia 1 to/from Africa may transit Asia 2
- Asia 1 to/from India / Middle East may transit Asia 2
- Asia 1 to/from South Pacific may transit Asia 2
- India / Middle East to/from South Pacific may transit Asia 2
- South America 1 to/from South America may transit South America 2
Qatar AAdvantage Award Routing Rule Exceptions
Normally you would NOT be able to transit the Middle East between Africa and Asia, between Europe and Asia, or between North America and Africa. But these routings, as long as Qatar is the carrier on both segments into and out of Doha, are now allowed. Here are some examples of what is now possible:
1. North America to Africa via Doha
Example: Qatar Business Class PHL – DOH – JNB for 75,000 AAdvantage miles + $7.50
2. Europe to Asia 1 or Asia 2 via Doha
Example: Qatar Business Class LHR – DOH – BKK for 52,500 AAdvantage miles + $312 (higher taxes due to departing out of London)
3. Africa to Asia 1 or Asia 2 via Doha
Example: Qatar Business Class JNB – DOH – HKG for 50,000 AAdvantage miles + $54
4. South America to Africa via Doha
Example: Qatar Business Class GRU – DOH – JNB for 97,500 AAdvantage miles + $36
Will These Award Routing Exceptions Work with Etihad or Other AAdvantage Partners?
No–as of now, they only work via Doha on Qatar (both the inbound and outbound flights must be on Qatar)
How About North America to Asia via Doha?
No, this will break the award, even if both flights are on Qatar. For example, PHL – DOH – HKG would be 97,500 AAdvantage miles, not 55,000 miles.
How Good is Qatar Business Class?
It's fine, but I prefer Cathay Pacific Business Class, Singapore Business Class, SWISS Business class and a few others to Qatar. See my Qatar Business Class Review.
What's the Doha Premium Terminal Lounge Like?
I enjoyed the Premium Terminal Lounge more than the actual Qatar flight. See my Qatar Premium Terminal Business Class Lounge Review.
Do you plan to take advantage of any of these Qatar AAdvantage award routing exceptions?
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