Emirates partner awards available from the US starting in mid-July…with one catch

Last week Dubai announced that it will reopen to tourists starting on July 7, 2020. Since then, Emirates, the flagship carrier of Dubai, has announced that it will resume a total of 48 routes, including several flights to the US.

The great news is that Emirates partner award availability has started to re-appear starting in mid-July. A few highlights:

  • July 10, 2020: Business class awards from ORD to DXB on Emirates bookable through Alaska Airlines
  • July 17, 2020: First class availability from JFK
  • July 30, 2020: First class availability from DFW and SEA
  • July 31, 2020: Business class availability from LAX
  • August 2, 2020: First class availability from SFO and BOS

After August 2, we see excellent award availability in all classes from the US to DXB.

The one big catch

Although there’s lots of award space from the US to Dubai, there’s next to no award space from Dubai to the US until August 22, 2020…so, you’ll need to find some other way to get back to the US. There is availability on British Airways from DXB to the US, although these seats comes with enormous fuel surcharges.

My favorite option when DXB to US award seats were unavailable was to keep flying east. Flights from DXB to NRT are usually wide open, and when booking on Alaska this only adds 30k miles to a first class award ticket. What’s better than to turn your trip into Dubai into a trip to Dubai AND Tokyo, right? But with so many Asian countries closed to tourists, this is no longer an option…although this could change by August.

With that said, the best option from the US to Dubai seems to be a trip in late August, where there’s excellent round trip availability.