Whether you’re craving gelato and cappuccino or hoping to catch a glimpse of the Pope, Italy is a great destination to visit with your miles and points. Here are five of our favorite mileage programs to use for a trip to Italy.

Content

1 Singapore Airlines Krisflyer
1.1 How to Book with Singapore Airlines Krisflyer Miles
1.2 How To Earn Singapore Airlines Krisflyer Miles
1.3 Cards to Help You Earn More Krisflyer Miles
2 Korean Air SkyPass
2.1 How to Book with Korean Air SkyPass Miles
2.2 How To Earn Korean Air SKYPASS Miles
2.3 Cards to Help You Earn More SkyPass Miles
3 Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan
3.1 How to Book With Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan Miles
3.2 How To Earn Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan Miles
3.3 Cards to Help You Earn More Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan Miles
4 American Airlines AAdvantage
4.1 How to Book With American Airlines AAdvantage Miles
4.2 How To Earn American Airlines AAdvantage Miles
4.3 Cards to Help You Earn More AAdvantage Miles
5 British Airways or Iberia Avios
5.1 How to Book with British Airways Avios or Iberia Avios Miles
5.2 How To Earn British Airways Avios or Iberia Avios Miles
5.3 Cards to Help You Earn More Avios
Final Thoughts

How to Get to Italy With Miles
View of Positano – famous old Italian resort, Italy

Singapore Airlines Krisflyer

How to Book with Singapore Airlines Krisflyer Miles

Star Alliance flights to Europe booked with Singapore Airlines miles cost:

  • 27,500 miles in economy
  • 65,000 in business class
  • 80,000 in first class

Singapore’s partner United Airlines has non-stop flights from Newark, New Jersey (EWR) to Milan, Rome (MXP), and Venice (VCE); they also fly to Rome (FCO) from Chicago (ORD) and Washington, DC (IAD).

You can also use Singapore miles to book flights with connections on other Star Alliance airlines like Air Canada, Austrian, Brussels, Lufthansa, Swiss, and TAP Portugal; however, you may have to pay fuel surcharges when booking flights on other partner airlines.

How to Get to Italy With Miles

To book a flight with Singapore Airlines miles, go to Singapore Air’s Website and select the ‘Redeem Flights’ button, then enter your cities, dates, and other search details.

How to Book with Singapore Airlines Krisflyer Miles

If there are flights available for the date you selected, you’ll see a table with flight details and mileage costs. Clicking on the button under the number of miles required will show you the total cost in miles and cash for that flight.

How to Book with Singapore Airlines Krisflyer Miles

How To Earn Singapore Airlines Krisflyer Miles

One of the great things about Singapore Airlines’ Krisflyer program is that you can transfer points from all four major transferable points programs – American Express Membership Rewards, Chase Ultimate Rewards, Citi ThankYou Points, and the new Marriott Bonvoy program.

However, be careful – Singapore miles expire 36 months after they’re added to your account, regardless of what account activity you’ve had since they were earned. So make sure you’re ready to spend those miles before you transfer them! 

Cards to Help You Earn More Krisflyer Miles

The Chase Sapphire Preferred is one of our favorite cards for earning Singapore Airlines miles. It comes with a great welcome bonus and you’ll earn 2X Ultimate Rewards points per dollar on restaurants and travel and 1X point on all other purchases. Ultimate Rewards can be transferred 1:1 to Singapore miles.

Chase Sapphire Preferred

60,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards Points after you spend $4,000 spend in 3 months

Learn more

Chase Ink Business Preferred

80,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards Points after you spend $5,000 in 3 months

Learn more

Korean Air SkyPass

How to Book with Korean Air SkyPass Miles

When using Korean Air miles on partner airlines, a round-trip booking is required. Korean Air charges:

  • 50,000 miles round-trip for economy
  • 80,000 miles for business class
  • 100,000 miles for first class

Korean Air is partners with Delta Air Lines, which has non-stop flights to Rome (FCO) and Venice (VCE) from Atlanta (ATL) and New York (JFK); you can also fly non-stop to Rome (FCO) from Detroit (DTW).

They’re also partners with Alitalia, Italy’s flagship airline, which has non-stop flights to Boston (BOS), Chicago (ORD), Los Angeles (LAX), Miami (MIA), and New York (JFK). Or you can fly on Air France or KLM with a connection in Paris (CDG) or Amsterdam (AMS).

How to Book with Korean Air SkyPass Miles

To book a flight with Korean Air SkyPass miles, log in to your SkyPass account on Korean Air’s website then select “Book a Flight” at the top of the page.

How to Book with Korean Air SkyPass Miles

Select the check mark next to Award Booking, then the button next to SkyTeam Award, then enter your cities, dates, and class of service. Note that the business class is referred to as “Prestige Class.”

How to Book with Korean Air SkyPass Miles

After selecting your desired flights, scroll to the bottom of the page and click “Calculate” to see the mileage price plus taxes and fees. These surcharges are kind of steep for comparison, booking the same flight with Delta SkyMiles would cost $356 less, but more than twice as many miles.

Price for the exact same itinerary booked with Delta Air Lines SkyMiles!
Price for the exact same itinerary booked with Delta Air Lines SkyMiles!

How To Earn Korean Air SKYPASS Miles

You can transfer points to Korean Air SkyPass from the Marriott Bonvoy program. There are also four co-branded Korean Air credit cards issued by US Bank, but they’re primarily marketed to recent immigrants with limited or no credit history, so they have low welcome bonuses and don’t have great bonus categories.

Marriott Bonvoy transfers to Korean Air at a 3:1 ratio (3 Marriott points = 1 SkyPass) with a 5,000-mile bonus for every 60,000 points transferred.  

Cards to Help You Earn More SkyPass Miles

Unfortunately, you can no longer transfer Chase Ultimate Rewards points to Korean SkyPass. Now, your best options are Marriott Bonvoy cards issued by Chase and Amex or the U.S. Bank Korean SkyPass.

Marriott Bonvoy Boundless Credit Card

75,000 bonus points after $3,000 spend in the first 3 months

Learn more

Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant American Express Card

75,000 bonus points after $3,000 spend in the first 3 months

Learn more by visiting our
credit cards page.

Marriott Bonvoy Business American Express Card

Earn 75,000 points after you spend $3,000 in the first 3 months. Terms apply.

Learn more

Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan

How to Book With Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan Miles

Alaska Airlines has two partners with non-stop flights from the U.S. to Italy. Emirates flies from New York (JFK) to Milan (MXP) and American Airlines flies from New York (JFK) and Miami (MIA) to Milan (MXP) and Philadelphia (PHL) to Rome (FCO). American also has seasonal flights from several other cities.

You can also use Alaska Airlines miles to book connecting flights on British Airways and Icelandair. Each airline partner has its own award rates, as follows (all prices for one-way flights):

Airline Economy Premium Economy Business Class First Class
American Airlines 22,500 – 30,000 miles NA 57,500 miles 85,000 miles
British Airways 32,500 miles 42,500 miles 60,000 miles 70,000 miles
Emirates 47,500 miles NA 105,000 miles 180,000 miles
Icelandair 27,500 – 45,000 miles NA 55,000 miles NA

These prices also include a domestic Alaska Airlines flight to get from your home to the international departure city. if you’re using American Airlines to get across the ocean, you can also include domestic American flights as part of your itinerary.

British Airways and Icelandair both have fuel surcharges on their flights, starting at $150 and going much higher (especially on British Airways). Flights on American and Emirates should only have about $19 in taxes and fees each way. However, you can also add a stopover in your connecting city (London for British Airways and Reykjavik for Icelandair) for no additional charge.

How to Book With Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan Miles

To book a ticket with Alaska Airlines miles, go to Alaska Airlines’ website, check the “Use Miles” box, and enter your cities and dates.

book ticket with Alaska Airlines miles at Alaska Airlines website

You’ll get an easy-to-navigate grid that shows you flights and pricing for different levels of service, as well as a preview of pricing for nearby dates. Watch out for mixed cabin itineraries, denoted with a light blue person sitting in a dark blue seat. These itineraries include flights in a lower class of service even though you are paying the full price for a higher class.


How To Earn Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan Miles

If you’re looking to earn Alaska Airlines miles, you have two options. First, you can transfer points from the Marriott Bonvoy at a 3:1 ratio. Second, you can earn miles directly with a co-branded Alaska Airlines credit card from Bank of America.

Cards to Help You Earn More Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan Miles

Your best bet is probably the Alaska Airlines Visa Signature Card from Bank of America, which earns 2X miles per dollar on Alaska Airlines purchases and 1X mile everywhere else.

Another option is to spend on the Marriott Bonvoy Cards issued by Chase and American Express. Each card is good for different situations, so make sure you consider your options. No matter which card you use, you’ll be able to transfer your Marriott Bonvoy points to Alaska Airlines.

Alaska Airlines Personal Credit Card

Learn more by visiting our
credit cards page.

Marriott Bonvoy Boundless Credit Card

75,000 bonus points after $3,000 spend in the first 3 months

Learn more

Marriott Bonvoy Business American Express Card

Earn 75,000 points after you spend $3,000 in the first 3 months. Terms apply.

Learn more

American Airlines AAdvantage

How to Book With American Airlines AAdvantage Miles

Regardless of whether you’re traveling on an American Airlines flight or one of its partner airlines, flights from the contiguous United States to Europe cost:

  • 22,500-30,000 miles one-way in economy (depending on the season)
  • 57,500 miles one-way in business class
  • 85,000 miles one-way in first class

American operates flights year-round to Milan from New York (JFK) and Miami (MIA) and to Rome (FCO) from Philadelphia (PHL). They also offer seasonal flights to Rome (FCO) from Charlotte (CLT), Chicago (ORD), Dallas (DFW), and New York (JFK), and to Venice (VCE) from Chicago (ORD) and Philadelphia (PHL).

If you don’t live in one of those cities, you can include a domestic flight from your home airport to the international departure city for the same number of miles.

How to Book With American Airlines AAdvantage Miles
Business class on American’s Airbus A330-300.

To find award tickets on American Airlines, just go to American Airlines’ website, enter your cities and dates, and check the “Redeem Miles” box.

How to Book With American Airlines AAdvantage Miles

The search results will come with a calendar view that allows you to select Economy, Business, or First Class. Always go for the “MileSAAver” option – “AAnytime” awards have more availability, but cost substantially more miles. Dates available for the cabin and rate you selected will be highlighted, and you can click “Show Full Calendar” to see a wider variety of dates.

How to Book With American Airlines AAdvantage Miles

How to Book With American Airlines AAdvantage Miles

You can also use AAdvantage miles for connecting flights on American’s partner airlines British Airways and Iberia, though expect to pay fuel surcharges on those airlines.

A less convenient flight on British Airways, connecting through London, costs $545 more than a non-stop on American.

How To Earn American Airlines AAdvantage Miles

You can transfer miles to American Airlines from the new Marriott Bonvoy program at a rate of 3 Marriott Points = 1 American mile, with a 5,000-mile bonus for every 60,000 Marriott points transferred. You can also earn miles with American Airlines credit cards from Citibank and Barclays.

Cards to Help You Earn More AAdvantage Miles

We love the American Airlines Aviator Red card from Barclays. For everyday spend, though, the Citi AAdvantage Platinum Select card offers more bang for your buck, with 2X miles per dollar at restaurants and gas stations and 1X mile on other purchases.

If you’re looking for more miles and a more premium experience, the Citi AAdvantage Executive card gives you and your authorized users unlimited access to the American Airlines Admirals Club lounge network, for a $450 annual fee.

AAdvantage Aviator Red World Elite MasterCard

60,000 AAdvantage miles after first purchase

Learn more by visiting our
credit cards page.

Citi / AAdvantage Platinum Select World Elite Mastercard

50,000 miles after $2,500 spend in 3 months

Learn more

British Airways or Iberia Avios

British Airways and Iberia both use Avios as their rewards currency, and both airlines partner with Air Italy, which recently launched non-stop service to Milan (MXP) from New York (JFK) and Miami (MIA).

The pricing is slightly different for each program: both charge 25,000 miles in economy, but British Airways charges 75,000 miles in Business while Iberia only charges 62,500. However, Iberia doesn’t let you book Air Italy flights online – you have to call, which can be an adventure – so we’ll mostly talk about British Airways Avios here.

Other than the business class mileage price and booking process, the same principles apply to both airlines.

Air Italy does have fuel surcharges, but they’re relatively low – expect to pay around $175 total for a one-way ticket, including taxes.

British Airways or Iberia Avios

How to Book with British Airways Avios or Iberia Avios Miles

To book a flight with British Airways Avios, go to British Airways’ website and log in to your British Airways Executive Club account, then enter your cities and dates on the “Book with Avios” tab.

How to Book with British Airways Avios or Iberia Avios Miles

This will give you a list of available flights, starting with non-stops. You can use the date tabs at the top to check other nearby dates if you don’t see the flight you’re looking for.

How to Book with British Airways Avios or Iberia Avios Miles

Clicking on the white box for your desired class of service will show you the pricing for that flight.

How to Book with British Airways Avios or Iberia Avios Miles

How To Earn British Airways Avios or Iberia Avios Miles

You can transfer points to British Airways or Iberia from American Express Membership Rewards, Chase Ultimate Rewards, and Marriott Bonvoy all at a 1:1 ratio.

Chase also offers British Airways and Iberia credit cards, as well as an Aer Lingus credit card which also earns Avios. British Airways, Iberia, and Aer Lingus have separate mileage programs, but you can transfer points freely between the three once you’ve had each account open for at 3 months.

Cards to Help You Earn More Avios

As always, we suggest you prioritize transferable points first. If you’re newer to points, Chase Ultimate Rewards points should be your focus. Once you’re set with Ultimate Rewards cards, you can also look into one of Chase’s co-branded cards with British Airways, Iberia or Aer Lingus.

If you are over 5/24, Membership Rewards points should be your go-to choice for earning Avios as Amex offers several cards with great bonus categories and welcome bonuses.

Chase Sapphire Reserve

50,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards Points after you spend $4,000 spend in 3 months

Learn more

Chase Ink Business Preferred

80,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards Points after you spend $5,000 in 3 months

Learn more

British Airways Visa Signature Card

50,000 miles after $3,000 spend in 3 months, an additional 50,000 miles after $20,000 spend in the first year

Learn more

Final Thoughts

There are lots of options for redeeming miles and points to get to Italy, and the best one for you will depend on how flexible your plans are, and how many miles you have and are willing to spend. But no matter where you keep your miles, there’s a way to fulfill your Italian travel dreams!

Chase Sapphire Preferred

New to the world of points and miles? The Chase Sapphire Preferred is the best card to start with. With a bonus of 60,000 points after $4,000 spend in the first 3 months and 2x points on dining and travel, this card truly cannot be beat! 

Learn more

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About the Author

In 2011, with a four-week trip around Europe, Caroline became a true road warrior, and there’s been no stopping her since. Caroline likes to mix roughing it and luxury on her travels, sometimes staying in five-star hotels and other times in hostels. Her mantra: splurge on experiences! She enjoys traveling to new countries (and hopes to visit all 193 someday!), trying local foods, and meeting people from around the world. A few travel highlights so...

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One Response to “Best Ways to Fly to Italy With Miles”


Lots of good options.

My favorite way to Italy, though, is the Emirates sale they run a few times a year. Tickets are $400 from JFK to MXP, and you can book them through the Chase portal as well. Last time we flew, we paid about 27,000 UR each for round trip. Emirates has a superior on-board product to domestic carriers, I highly recommend using them to get across the pond.

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