There’s a new tool for searching flight award space.
Launched in March 2023, the site Roame.travel allows travelers to quickly search for award flights across many airlines and loyalty programs.
In addition to showing you an airline’s award pricing on a particular route, the site also makes recommendations on transfers from credit card rewards programs and takes active transfer bonuses into account.
Perhaps most notably, the site is fast, displaying search results across an array of airlines and frequent flyer programs in a matter of seconds.
How Roame.travel started
The site’s co-founder, Tim Qin, says his inspiration for the site came from years of reading TPG and from the dozens of hours it took him and his co-founder to find first-class award space to Asia last year.
“We wanted to save ourselves the time in the future when we planned to do this again,” Qin told TPG. “Instead of us searching on all the different airline websites, checking day in, day out, we wanted to create a product for ourselves that was both fast, real-time and able to search multiple programs.”
This “passion project,” Qin explained, is built around speed. Roame searches are returned in an average of 12 seconds, the company claims.
While free for users, the site also offers paid options with higher caliber features from which the site primarily makes its money currently.
Which programs are covered by Roame.travel?
The site conducts its searches across more than a dozen airline loyalty programs.
Factoring in airline alliances, Roame takes 122 airlines into account, including ones linked to:
- Aeromexico Rewards
- Air Canada Aeroplan
- Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan
- American Airlines AAdvantage
- Avianca LifeMiles
- Delta SkyMiles
- Emirates Skywards
- Flying Blue (Air France-KLM)
- Free Spirit
- Iberia Plus
- JetBlue TrueBlue
- Qantas Frequent Flyer
- United MileagePlus
- Virgin Atlantic Flying Club
- Virgin Australia Velocity
How does Roame.travel work?
Here’s what the Roame.travel homepage looks like.
You can search for free without creating an account or logging in. However, you’ll need to create a free account to fully use the site.
Much like a booking site, you’ll start by plugging in your flight origin and destination — whether it’s two cities, airports or regions. Then, you’ll add your intended travel date(s) and the number of travelers. After you input your desired travel information, the site will display results, the points or miles price and the best options to transfer points for optimum value redemption.
Keep in mind that the site only analyzes one-way flights, so to search for award space for a round-trip itinerary, you must separately search the outbound and return flights.
What are the premium options for Roame.travel?
If you’re interested in additional flexibility when conducting searches, Roame.travel offers a couple of paid account options.
The least expensive paid option, the Friends of Roame package, costs $9.16 per month or $109.99 per year. It includes its SkyView program, which makes it so members can enjoy wider date ranges for searches, plus the ability to set flight alerts. You can also search flights between broader regions, such as a trip from the U.S. to Asia, and then see which cities currently have the best redemption options, similar to searching cash deals using the Google Flights Explore tool. This can be helpful if you’re searching for harder-to-find redemptions, such as a premium economy or business-class seat to a coveted destination.
A business plan for up to 20 users is also available starting at $291.66 per month or $3,499.99 per year.
How to find an award with Roame.travel
The following are a couple of examples to help you better understand how to use Roame.travel to find an award.
Searching for an economy award
Let’s say you want to book an award flight from Newark to Paris in coach for late February.
Once you plug in your details, click the magnifying glass search button on the right side.
The results will quickly populate as the site searches various airlines. Be sure to wait until the progress bar (below) hits 100%.
When the results appear, you can change the filters and sort the results to only show your preferred frequent flyer programs.
You can do the same with credit card programs. For example, if you’re not a Capital One member, it probably wouldn’t make sense to see recommendations on transferring Capital One miles.
You can also sort results by schedule, travel time, layovers and price.
Once the results finished populating, you’ll see the best option displayed at the top of the list of results — in this case, that’s a one-way Air France-operated flight for 9,231 points through Virgin Atlantic Flying Club.
To book the flight at the listed award rate, Roame.travel recommends transferring 9,231 points from American Express or Chase Ultimate Rewards to take advantage of 30% transfer bonuses some users currently have (but remember, transfer bonuses can be targeted and are not always available to all cardmembers).
As for the return trip, the same deal is available for 9,231 points one-way.
If you decided to book both options with the 30% transfer bonus Roame.travel is factoring into the price, the round-trip total would come out to 18,462 points.
To continue the booking process, you can click on the American Express or Chase logo next to the price for more information on making the transfer.
Once you find the flight you want, go to the recommended airline loyalty program website and search for that itinerary and redemption. If it shows up — in this case, it does for 24,000 Virgin Atlantic Flying Club points (the amount required to take advantage of the 30% credit card portal transfer bonus) plus $372 in taxes and fees — book it.
Searching for a business-class award
To search for a premium cabin award, you’ll follow similar steps to the economy award process, though note that you may need to be more flexible with your search to generate results.
For example, if you want to fly from New York to the Maldives at some point in January 2024 but are not tied to a particular date, you would start by searching various dates. If there’s no availability on the dates you try, you’ll run into this message about a lack of awards available that fit Roame.travel’s criteria for a good value redemption.
To increase your odds of finding availability, you can try searching seven-day periods through the site’s paid version. Once you find an option, such as this one from New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK) to Velana International Airport (MLE) in the Maldives, you’ll see a similar breakdown of points required and how to book the flight.
For this business-class itinerary on German leisure carrier Condor, you’d book through the Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan. There would be stopovers in Frankfurt in each direction, and the cost would be 65,000 miles each way.
Like the Virgin Atlantic option noted above, your next step for booking this award flight would be to go to Alaska Airlines’ website to see if the deal is available there. In this case, it is for 110,000 Mileage Plan miles plus $329 in taxes and fees, so you’d then follow the prompts to complete the booking process.
Things to keep in mind when using Roame.travel
There are a few factors to consider when searching for award space on Roame.travel or similar sites.
Bookings are not made within Roame.travel
Roame.travel helps you search for award availability, but you do not book directly on the site. Instead, you’ll need to book somewhere else — typically directly with an airline.
Listed transfer amounts may require some extra attention
When considering credit card transfers for your award booking, it’s important to fully understand how Roame.travel got to its displayed price.
In some cases, the site will show you how many of your credit card points are needed after a credit card transfer bonus is factored in, so you’ll want to be sure you’re eligible for the bonus and follow the appropriate steps for using it to achieve the redemption rate Roame.travel advertises.
There are some limitations to the site
Roame.travel doesn’t tap into every airline loyalty program, so know that there may be more options than the site displays, especially for Europe-to-Asia itineraries.
For some of the 122 airlines it covers, the site also warns that its data may be incomplete.
Additionally, the site currently lacks the option to sort by the fees you pay on an award ticket, so you may need to pay hundreds of dollars in fees on some round-trip fares the site displays. This is particularly true for carriers like British Airways. Qin does, however, hope to add this sort feature to the site in the future.
Roame.travel is another tool travelers can use when searching for award flights, as it offers fast search results. However, with enhancements still on the horizon, it may not provide a completely comprehensive look at the redemptions available with every airline loyalty program just yet.
Still, Roame.travel is a great time-saving option for travelers. It can help you find redemption avenues you may not have thought of and even make it easier for you to leverage airline loyalty programs, alliances, partnerships and credit card transfers.
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