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Quick Points: Use Turkish Miles&Smiles to reach the Middle East for just 2,000 extra miles

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Turkish Airlines’ Miles&Smiles program offers some of the best redemptions for flights in the world of points and miles.

For only 30,000 miles, you can secure a one-way ticket from North America to Europe in economy — or it’s just 45,000 miles for business class. Although that is already a great deal, booking flights to the Middle East is one of the best ways to fully take advantage of this program.

Flying from North America to the Middle East costs only 2,000 miles more than flying to Europe. That means for only 32,000 miles, you can travel in economy class from Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) to places like Dubai International Airport (DXB), Oman’s Muscat International Airport (MCT) or Amman, Jordan’s Queen Alia International Airport (AMM). Business class is just 47,000 miles.

That isn’t just a good deal; it’s a steal.

Turkish Airlines Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner

With more airline loyalty programs moving toward dynamic pricing, a program offering a region-based chart with well-priced redemption options to the Middle East is a gem. Taking advantage of the Middle East sweet spot with Miles&Smiles is one of the best ways to explore the region without depleting your points.

I visit the Middle East several times a year and use the Miles&Smiles program to book business-class tickets for 47,000 miles. My redemptions have included Los Angeles to Dubai for New Year’s and, more recently, to Amman.

After logging into your Miles&Smiles account, search for Turkish Airlines award tickets by navigating to your name and clicking on “award ticket” in the drop-down menu. Input your city pair and date in the search section to start populating results. Turkish Airlines classifies the cheapest redemption option as “award ticket promotion” and uses the following fare classes:

  • X for economy
  • I for business

After a quick search, I found an award flight from San Francisco International Airport (SFO) to AMM this fall for 47,000 miles one-way in business class.

Searching SFO to IST to AMM

Similarly, I found another flight from SFO to Dubai for 32,000 miles in economy.

Searching SFO to IST to DXB

While the above examples involve Turkish-operated flights, it’s worth mentioning that you can tap into this deal for award flights booked on any Star Alliance carrier.

That said, the program’s partner award ticket search tool isn’t always functional. As a result, I recommend using your favorite Star Alliance award search engine — like Air Canada Aeroplan or United MileagePlus — to locate availability. Then, call Turkish Airlines’ customer service line to provide the flight information to book your ticket.

Related: 7 of the best airline award chart sweet spots

Thankfully, you can boost your Miles&Smiles account by transferring points from Bilt Rewards, Capital One and Citi ThankYou Rewards. This means you can effectively earn Turkish miles on the following cards:

Bottom line

When planning your next Middle East getaway, take advantage of a redemption through Miles&Smiles. With fantastic award rates and solid availability, especially in economy, you can visit some amazing destinations for comparatively few rewards.

For rates and fees of the Bilt Mastercard, click here.
For rewards and benefits of the Bilt Mastercard, click here.