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  • Konrad Tillman

Booking Garuda Indonesia With Flying Blue Miles

Intro


Flying Blue miles, part of KLM and Air France, have terrific value. Better yet, these miles are easy to come by as you can transfer your Chase points and Amex Points to the program. Further along, we often see bonuses, such as a 25% bonus last year.


Flying Blue has some terrific spots for redeeming miles, but these are my top 3, all with Garuda Indonesia. Some of which I have used.


The only issue with Flying Blue is their crazy dynamic pricing. However, with Garuda Indonesia, most of the prices are fixed, cheaper than other partner airlines, and offer superior experiences.


Sweet Spot 1: Garuda A330 Business Class Singapore-Jakarta 20K Miles


This is terrific value when it comes to redeeming points. With one-way fares ranging upwards of 800$, this represents 4 cents a mile, terrific value. The taxes are relatively minimal as well coming out to 83.70$.



I recently flew this route (11K miles; they devalued this since), and I found Garuda to have some good and bad. I got the classic aircraft swap to a 2-2-2 configuration, but most of the time you will have a lie-flat seat in a 1-2-1 configuration.


Flutes in Business❤️

Sweet Spot 2: Garuda Business Class Jakarta-Hong Kong 28K Miles


For 5 hours you can experience Garuda Indonesia on the A330 business class for 28K Miles+62$. This is a fantastic offering and just like I mentioned up above, the soft product is fantastic (https://www.jettoajet.com/post/initial-thoughts-why-i-m-not-the-biggest-fan-of-garuda-business-class-garuda-business-class-from-s).



With any luck, you might be able to snag a day with the A330, which features lie-flat seats. Garuda is known for aircraft swaps; be wary.


Sweet Spot 3: Garuda First Class Jakarta-Amsterdam 275K Miles


This is it. Booking First Class through points! Even though this redemption comes at a pretty penny, it is well worth it, especially if you can come across a transfer bonus. For 275K miles+minimal taxes, you can experience 14 hours in First Class with Garuda Indonesia on the only flight that offers First Class.



Something to note is this is the only First Class that is bookable through Flying Blue as an entry-level member. With First Class becoming increasingly rare, this might be one of the few offerings you can try in First from Asia to Europe that are easy to book. Of course, there is Singapore Airlines, but flights have notoriously become hard to book in saver space. Cathay, don't count on that opening up. Emirates, after the devaluation I don't see much value.


Expensive but...

I have heard a lot about Garuda First Class, and from what I have read, I believe it is a very personalized experience. Before departure, they ask you what size pajamas you are, what you would like to eat, etc.


Final Thoughts


In my opinion, Flying Blue can have some sweet award spots such as Europe-East Coast (USA) for 50K Miles. It sounds good on paper, but you have to work with dates. However, flying around Asia with Garuda not only offers good fares but also plenty of availability. There is no First Class space on any award system that seems to be as wide open as Garuda through Flying Blue. Stay tuned for a comprehensive review of Garuda Business Class soon!



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