Have you ever had a hard time redeeming your miles and using them for your flights? Or maybe called an airline where they tell you there are no award seats available (well, in fact, there is, but you believe them anyway because you’re a first-time user)?
Enter: Juicy Miles. Juicy Miles is a user-friendly flight award search tool that can help you find the perfect award flight without causing you much time and money. Disclaimer: it isn’t free, but it sure is cheap and durable.
This tool will not just show you the available award flights (you thought didn’t exist), but this will also show you how to get there with the use of both your airline miles and transferrable points: Amex Membership Rewards, Capital One “Miles”, Chase Ultimate Rewards, Citi ThankYou Rewards, or Marriott points.
I have gotten to know Adam, the Founder of Juicy Miles. I share a connection with him as we both set about creating an easy-to-use platform that can help beginners maximize their free travel. After using it myself to look at flight options, I can see how amazing it can be for beginners especially. Instead of spending hours and hours doing recon, you could pay $10 and get all the info you need.
Disclaimer: Adam has given me a referral code to use so that Travel Freely will receive compensation for signups. I originally told Adam I didn’t even want the referral code because I believe in his product so much, but he insisted I use it. =)
So here is our link to use if you want to sign up: Sign up for Juicy Miles.
Overview: The Swiss Army Knife of Flight Awards Search
The Juicy Miles search screen is completely intuitive. You can search for round-trip, one-way or multi-city flights and choose from economy or business class options. You can also add in some flexibility to your preferred dates by adding ±1 day to your departure dates.
Here’s a sample of a search for a flight from NYC to Paris:
Once you hit the search button, you’ll get results organized according to various points programs (Chase Ultimate Rewards, AMEX Membership Rewards, ThankYou from Citi, etc.). From there, you select a certain rewards program to retrieve a list of all possible flight options tied into the program. The list will include details on flight schedules, airline, number of stops, and an overview of the cost in points.
You can then click on a specific flight to view more details. There are also ways to filter your search or sort your results, you can do so by clicking on the “Refine” or “Sort” button.
Once you’re happy with the flight you found, you can click on the Select this Flight button which redirects you to another page where you can view Booking Instructions about the flight. This is where Juicy Miles becomes even more interesting: apart from directions on how you can book the flight, it provides you with ways or suggestions to secure the points you need for your chosen flight! Now that’s impressive. You get valuable help for executing a successful points strategy.
After conducting a search, you can also get a copy of the details of your selected flight by clicking on the “Export” button. This will redirect you to a page where you can either download the flight details onto a PDF file, print, or copy to your clipboard.
And if you’re looking for that added convenience, Juicy Miles can also take care of the booking for you, but this is only if you’re interested as this added service comes at a fee of $49.99:
Another exciting feature is how Juicy Miles instantly informs you of existing points promos and transfer bonuses. But it doesn’t end there, whenever you conduct a search on the tool, it automatically computes the transfer bonuses for you, no need to do the math! This is great for when you want to compare your options for points transfer.
The Juicy Miles flight award tool has two pricing options for individuals who are interested to maximize the site’s search features:
- $9.99 for 5 days
$29.99 per month (special introductory pricing)
It also provides customers with premium services such as One-on-One full-service booking and Mileage Run planning.
If you’re just looking to explore the tool and see how it can help you plan an upcoming trip or establish a well-planned points strategy, then the $9.99 5-day pass will be more than enough for you. However, if you’re a serial traveler and the monthly plan is more promising, then by all means, go for it! The value that the $29.99 monthly membership provides is very reasonable.
Tips: If you’re about to pay for Juicy Miles full-service booking or mileage run planning, you would save money by signing up for the $29.99 plan first since that will give you a 25% discount on the full services. If you don’t want to pay for multiple months, simply cancel before the first month is over.
What the Juicy Miles Tool Means for Beginners
From a beginner user perspective, you may find yourself unfamiliar with transferrable points, their uses, and how they can help you in tons of ways.
In many cases, if you have miles in just one program, it would be easier for you to search for awards with that program’s own web interface. Let’s say you only have Delta miles. In that case, you can simply use Delta.com to search for award flights. The main advantage for you for using Juicy Miles, then, would be that Juicy Miles may find better awards that are not available to book online, but most of the time you’d probably do just as well with using Delta.com for free.
You will know the real power of Juicy Miles if you have points in a transferable points program. Given that you are on a beginner level, you may not be aware that your Amex, Capital One, Chase, Citi, or Marriott points can be transferred to airline programs, but that shouldn’t be a problem because Juicy Miles will inform you when one of those programs offer you the best value for an award.
Here’s an example. Suppose you want to fly business class from Seattle to Paris and you have only Chase points and Delta miles. You’ve already determined that the cash price is way too high. So you run the search on Juicy Miles and you filter to just Chase and Delta. You see then that on the date you want, you would have to pay 280,000 Delta miles for a one-way non-stop flight:
You also see that you could book with Chase points for as few as 70,000 points, so you click Chase (see below). Now you see that the 70,000 point options involve 2 stops. You don’t like that idea, so you click the nonstop option. There you learn that you can fly nonstop business class on Air France for 118,000 points. That’s not exactly cheap, but compared to Delta’s price it’s a bargain.
What the Juicy Miles Tool Means for Intermediate Users
If you are on the intermediate level, transferrable points and partner programs aren’t new to you, but you may still be at a position where you aren’t quite comfortable with the information you know especially on foreign programs. Your knowledge of the transferrable points system may also be limited to rewards programs that you only know. But hey, you still have a great advantage in this.
Juicy Miles is that much-needed tool you’ve been waiting for to up your points game, it offers you a shortcut to planning and executing valuable points strategy that otherwise takes months or even years to master.
In addition, since you already have transferable points, you are much more likely to find awards that meet your needs than if you only had miles with a few airline programs. Also, Juicy Miles will help you pay fewer points for the same flights.
For example, if you were to book a Star Alliance award on your own, you might simply transfer Chase Ultimate Rewards points to United to make the booking. But Juicy Miles might show you that you could save a lot of points by transferring to another Star Alliance carrier. And, since Juicy Miles shows how to book awards once you’ve selected them, you can most likely complete the entire process on your own.
What the Juicy Miles Tool Means for Experts
Now, for the experts. You may be far ahead with those who are just getting to know the process of booking award flights, but you have to admit that it wouldn’t be as much convenient and easy for you if you haven’t known about Juicy Miles. It offers you great help in conserving your time and having a hassle-free booking experience.
With your many encounters on booking flights, you know very well how you hated the fact that you still have to call so many times on airlines just to find out if award availability even exists. But with Juicy Miles, your time is saved with the efficiency of the process.
Juicy Miles is also a great way to bypass lapses that may occur with certain flight awards or rewards portals. For instance, you want to use Virgin Atlantic miles to book a Delta flight to Frankfurt, Germany. However, you can’t search for this online because Virgin Atlantic does not recognize the Frankfurt Airport. So instead of making calls just to determine flight availabilities with Virgin Atlantic, you can quickly search for that flight via the Juicy Miles tool.
No Tool is Perfect
Nothing is perfect, and just like any other search engine, Juicy Miles may have some minor lapses including issues with bugs, inaccurate pricing, and inconsistencies. As you continue to use the tool, you’ll run into some of these issues from time to time. But despite these, Juicy Miles is continuously working on the improvement of their service (because there’s always room for that, right?). And in case you run into any bugs, Juicy Miles provides a chat support function that could help you get to these issues asap. But to offer a realistic assessment of the tool, so you can truly see if this tool is worth your time and money, here is a list of the bugs that we’ve seen with the tool so far:
- Incorrect Award Availabilities – There are times where Juicy Miles shows results that aren’t really bookable (false positives) or fails to show awards that are bookable (false negatives). Given how incredibly complex flight awards can be, this shouldn’t be a surprise to anyone. However, to make sure you don’t get stuck with flights that couldn’t be actually redeemed, always double check flights with airline programs to make sure that your desired flights are available and your points transferrable.
- Errors with Award Prices – In some cases, Juicy Miles correctly shows award availability, but doesn’t show the correct award price. One example of this that we’ve seen is with Delta round-trip awards. Delta often prices round-trip awards less than two one-way awards, but Juicy Miles displays only the one-way award prices.
- Lack of Triggers and Notifications – Award availability is not a static thing. Awards that aren’t available today may become available later. That’s why award alerts are a crucial feature for a tool like this. Ideally, it would be good if Juicy Miles can allow you to set up your own triggers/notifications so you don’t miss critical awards. This feature is something that the JuicyMiles team is working on. For now, you can request an alert to be set up behind the scenes and the Juicy Miles team can email you once the alert is triggered.
- High Subscription Price – At $29.99/month, the Juicy Miles can be an expensive tool all in all, especially if you look at its yearly value at $359.88 per year. That’s a lot. If you only book big award trips once or twice a year, you may find that you can pay the $10 once or twice a year and be done with it.
If you are a beginner and want to maximize your award options (especially to look at your best price for business class tickets), I can’t recommend Juicy Miles enough. If you want to spend 20+ hours of research and still feel lost, you can forego the $10 and do it yourself!
There are other award search tools, but none that come close to Juicy Miles’ power and ease of use. However, the issues with the tool can still provide doubts for someone looking to invest money into the tool. If you’re a casual user, well and good, you can avail of paid searches only when you need it. But if you think that this tool is a monthly necessity for you, then it’s a matter of weighing the pros and cons so you’re sure that you’re not paying more than what you need to pay for.
Set these things aside, we can still argue that as far as flight awards search tools go, Juicy Miles is at the top (undoubtedly!), And with their commitment to improvement, the tool is definitely worth checking, especially for us at Travel Freely, any tool that is critical to hacking our way into free travel is a tool worth our time!