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Etihad to launch Edinburgh service next year – and how to redeem

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Following the Qatar Airways launch of services from Edinburgh to Doha, Etihad has responded with a daily service from the capital to Abu Dhabi.

The service will launch on June 8th next year.  It will be a two-class service on a Airbus A330 with 22 business class seats.  Etihad already has a successful regional service from Manchester.

There are two ways of redeeming for Etihad services.  The obvious route is via Etihad Guest, which is a partner with American Express Membership Rewards.  There is also the UK Etihad credit card.

This is not the most efficient route, however, since Etihad has distance-based redemption pricing and I estimate it would a touch over 100,000 miles for a business class return.

Far cheaper is to redeem American Airlines miles.  This is one of the biggest bargains in the hobby – American charges just 60,000 AA miles for a business class return to Abu Dhabi from the UK.  Whilst Etihad is not in the oneworld alliance, which is why you cannot redeem Avios on Etihad, the airline does have a special partnership with American.

It is worth keeping an eye out for another sign-up promotion on the American Airlines credit card (a 15,000 mile bonus has just ended).  Alternatively, if the 20,000 point bonus comes back on the Starwood Preferred Guest Amex it would convert to 25,000 American Airlines miles.  With a little bit of card spend that is enough for a one-way on Etihad.  Coming back, you could use Avios on the Qatar service to Edinburgh.

Note that Etihad generally caps redemption seats in business class at two per flight so this is not an option for families.


Earning Flying Blue miles from credit cards

How to earn Etihad Guest miles from UK credit cards (April 2021)

Etihad Guest does not have a UK credit card.  However, you can earn Etihad Guest miles by converting Membership Rewards points earned from selected UK American Express cardsThese are:

Membership Rewards points convert at 1:1 into Etihad Guest miles which is an attractive rate.  The cards above all earn 1 Membership Rewards point per £1 spent on your card, which converts to 1 Etihad Guest mile. The Gold card earns double points (2 per £1) on all flights you charge to it.

Etihad Guest is also a partner with the HSBC Premier Mastercard (0.5 miles per £1 spent) and HSBC Premier World Elite Mastercard (1 mile per £1 spent).

Comments (3)

  • Hingeless says:

    Is it also possible to get an at Berlin card and collect points on one world flights and the spend them on et etihad?

    • Phillip says:

      Yes, but by comparison, LHR-AUH one way in business will set you back 50k Topbonus Miles, VS 44k Etihad Guest Miles, VS 30k Aadvantage Miles. It is however relative to how you earn your miles and how you value them.

    • Rob says:

      Yes, you can with Etihad as they are a shareholder in AirBerlin.

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