Star Alliance Reward Seat Release Dates

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Planning to redeem your miles on Star Alliance carriers? This guide will help you understand when each airline releases reward seats, so you can be prepared to book as soon as they become available.



Star Alliance Reward Seat Release Timeline

Below is a table showing when each Star Alliance airline typically opens up reward seat availability:

AirlineAward Seat Opening Time
Aegean Airlines250 Days
Air Canada355 Days
Air China355 Days
Air India331 Days
Air New Zealand350 Days
ANA355 Days [328 Days for Partners]
Asiana Airlines361 Days
Austrian Airlines355 Days
Avianca (LifeMiles)360 Days
Brussels Airlines360 Days
Copa Airlines330 Days
Croatia Airlines355 Days
EgyptAir355 Days
Ethiopian Airlines328 Days
EVA Air360 Days
LOT Polish355 Days
Lufthansa360 Days
SAS330 Days
Shenzhen Airlines361 Days
Singapore Airlines355 Days
South African Airways335 Days
SWISS Airlines339 Days (Economy) and 300 Days (Premium)
TAP Portugal360 Days
Thai Airways340 Days
Turkish Airlines356 Days
United Airlines337 Days

Navigating Unique Airline Practices

Now, let’s take a closer look at some of the unique practices and potential caveats you might encounter with some of these airlines:

Air Canada

Air Canada releases award seats 355 days prior to departure. While it follows a dynamic pricing model for its own Aeroplan members, it does adhere to a traditional award chart for partner airlines, giving a clear indication of the number of miles needed for each redemption.

Air New Zealand

Air New Zealand is somewhat notorious in the award travel community for its stingy release of premium cabin award seats. However, a consistent number of economy seats are typically released 350 days out.

ANA

ANA releases its award seats 355 days before departure, at 9 AM Tokyo time or 8:00 p.m. Eastern Time. But be aware that if you’re trying to book an award online in the United States at this time, you won’t see the ability to book the award because your computer will show that you are 356 days from departure. For partner airlines, seats become available 328 days out. Furthermore, ANA usually only releases one First Class seat per flight and it often needs to be booked nearly a year in advance.

Lufthansa

Lufthansa typically releases its award seats 360 days prior to departure, but be aware that Lufthansa First Class award seats are generally only made available to partners at most 15 days before departure.

Singapore Airlines

Singapore Airlines opens its reward seat booking 355 days before departure. However, it’s important to note that the airline often reserves its best premium cabin award availability (especially in Suites/First and Business Class) exclusively for its own KrisFlyer members, which are typically not bookable on partner airlines.

SWISS Airlines

With SWISS, it’s worth noting that the coveted Swiss International Air Lines First Class is nearly impossible to book unless you have top-tier Miles & More elite status.

TPG ran a post that said it was bookable via United but only if done 3 days prior to departure and also if the flight had a connection elsewhere – showing how incredibly hard it is to get a seat.

United Airlines

In 2023, United switched to fully dynamic award pricing. Award rates now vary by demand, regardless of fare class. While they do have an award chart, keep in mind that starting rates are not guaranteed, and can change depending on when you travel. For more details, check their award travel updates.

Keep in mind that the availability of reward seats doesn’t just depend on how far in advance you book, but also on the route, season, and the airline’s own commercial considerations. If you don’t see a reward seat available on the date you want to fly, remember that airlines may occasionally release more reward seats as the flight date gets closer.

Remember, it’s important to plan your award travel well in advance and be ready to book as soon as seats become available. Happy award travelling!

For more information about specific release dates and booking strategies for each airline, refer back to this page, or check out our dedicated guides on Oneworld seat release dates and SkyTeam member release dates.

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Dan
Dan
Travelling on Points is the brainchild of a person who loves to travel and reap the benefits of doing so. Dan enjoys sharing the knowledge of travel as he believes that the more people travel the less narrow-minded, and more tolerant, people will be of each other.

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