A reader tipped us off to this beauty of a mileage run from Houston to Dubai that can haul in a bunch of Delta MQD for a fraction of the price.
And before we go any further: no, it’s not on Aeroflot. (That was the first thing a couple of smart aleck friends and family members asked me.)
Houston to Dubai Mileage Run
First: a big thank you to reader Steven for telling me about this!
So, this is a Houston (IAH) to Dubai (DXB) mileage run/mini-vacation in business class on SkyTeam carriers. Here’s the thing: we found a bunch of different itineraries that yield about the same MQD and MQM, give or take a few. But the essence here is IAH to DXB.
If you don’t live in Houston, this could be a good excuse to redeem some SkyMiles and position to/from IAH. Remember, SkyMiles award trips earn MQD, MQM, and MQS during 2022.
The one that made me drop a Keanu Reeves-like “Whoa” was this IAH-MSP-CDG-DXB-CDG-MSP-IAH odyssey. You get a day to explore Dubai (or sleep in your hotel room) before heading back to the United States.
This is a business class trip on a Delta partner, so its MQD earnings will be 40% of the distance flown.
Remember, the key here is to book the partner’s marketed trip (in this instance, Air France) but credit it to your Delta SkyMiles number. –-> HERE’S WHY. <–
Yes, two of the flights are operated by Delta Air Lines. But all you care about (in terms of earning MQD, MQD, MQS, and SkyPesos) are the Air France flight numbers.
The trip prices out to $1802.07. Based on the above literary’s figures and some estimates we took from the Unofficial SkyMiles calculator, the trip should earn an estimated:
- $6796 Delta MQD (that’s over 3.75X return on your airfare!)
- 25,502 Delta MQM (7.1 CPMQM)
- 17,006 SkyMiles (If you value SkyMiles at a penny each, you essentially “earn back” about $170 in Delta travel to use another time.)
You could start with 0 MQM and 0 MQD balance — and become Silver Medallion with this trip alone.
Or if you’re already Silver or Gold, this could make getting Platinum (or even Diamond) much easier.
Dates and Other Itineraries
You can also pay a few bucks more on some different itineraries to stay extra days in case you want to turn it into a sightseeing trip. The prices and earnings are fairly comparable. (I’d say within $100 MQD.)
And there are several available dates as of this posting. Check ’em out:
Keep in mind this trip involves three countries — all with their own COVID mandates. Make sure you read up on each and adhere to them.
Worried About Finding the Trip — and Getting the Correct Delta Earnings?
If booking a Delta partner run spooks you and you’re concerned about getting all the details right so you earn the correct MQD and MQM, let me assure you of two things:
- Several other people are, too!
- point.me can help you, so let them deal with all that!
Seriously, don’t stress about finding the trip or worry about which frequent flyer number goes where. Outsource that to a professional. Our colleagues at point.me do this for a living — and we trust them to help our readers.
And if you’d rather not go to Dubai or want a mileage run tailored to your budget, goals, and preferences, point.me creates customized mileage runs every day for people.
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You can get the price down to the low 1600’s by booking with AMEX International Airline Program……
“You could start with 0 MQM and 0 MQD balance — and become Gold Medallion with this trip alone.”
How? Silver yes.
I was already thinking about the next sentence. Thanks, Steve, for pointing that out.
Random question: has anyone seen an OV fare class before? Applied GUCs to a flight recently and they cleared (agent did it over phone and I can select FC seats), but I’m seeing OV as the fare class instead of the OY I typically see for upgrades. This is a domestic flight on Delta metal.
Can you explain how much more mQd on partner airline?
@Lin – Click the link in post “-> HERE’S WHY. <–” 🙂
wish I would have noticed this when you posted it . That rate is long gone lol
@Barry – You can subscribe to the mileage run email alerts and get notice of the post very quickly. Notice it is separate from the daily blog email blast.
Just did this mileage run. i did it in 3 days – left IAH on Tuesday and back to IAH on Thursday. Exhausted! Slept in the Hotel for 14 hours and then Uber right back to the airport. Spent less than $1800 for the Business class rt ticket. Used my Chase Ultimate Reward points to buy the ticket which worth $0.015 per point, so in essence, this mileage run only costed $1200 and I get over 6700 MQD. Can’t beat it! Thanks for posting this mileage run.
Oh, to find something even close to this for early next year. Nothing even close. Did this run from DFW last year & intentionally stayed an extra day in DBX which was fun. MEM is home airport, so a positioning run is expected, but no long distance business deals from anywhere that I can find. Anyone else having better luck?
Did you see this?
Thanks for responding.
Yes I saw that, but I suppose I’m spoiled. On a trip that long I am looking for Business. Probably going to cost more this time, but right now ticket prices I’ve found are astronomical. Maybe something better in the next year.