In what can only be described as the most exciting world development since Kim Kardashian’s latest wedding, Aerolineas Argentinas has been added as a Delta SkyMiles partner for both mileage accrual and redemptions.

While Aerolineas Argentinas only joins SkyTeam in the fall, it’s already possible to earn redeemable miles and redeem miles for travel on Aerolineas Argentinas. You can find the earnings chart for them here, while the redemption rates for their flights are at the standard “low” level found on the SkyMiles award chart (meaning 100,000 miles for roundtrip business class to South America).

The bad news is threefold. First, their only route to the US is between Miami and Buenos Aires, so the partnership doesn’t open up that many options for travel between the US and South America. Second, Aerolineas Argentinas has pretty crappy recliner seats in business class, so don’t expect a world class product. Third, there’s no way to search business class award space online, so you’re at the mercy of Delta’s SkyMiles agent to inquire about availability and make a reservation. Half of them don’t even know Air France is a SkyTeam member, so expect making a reservation to be only slightly more painful than a root canal.

Still, it’s another option, in addition to Aeromexico to South America, which probably has a better product and opens up a few more destinations.

Now, if your balls are made of the same material as the Chase Sapphire Preferred you’re exponentially braver than I am, Mac points out another interesting option here in the comments section of a previous post. Yes, this is that Mac, my favorite blog reader, the same guy that uncovered the Aer Lingus deal using Avios points. Here’s what he says:

Regarding your valuation of Delta miles: What if a certain blog reader of yours pointed out that its now possible to redeem 150k Skymiles from N America to Australia or NZ with a stopover in South America with very minimal YQ. “AR” you considering adjusting you valuation. Convenient from your neck of the woods too. :)

So yeah, Aerolineas Argentinas flies from Miami to Buenos Aires, from Buenos Aires to Auckland, and from Auckland to Sydney. So you could theoretically fly them all the way to Australia or New Zealand with a stopover in Buenos Aires. Totally tempting in theory, though that’s a bit too much travel on Aerolineas Argentinas for me…

(Tip of the hat to The Points Guy)

  1. June 1st, 2012 at 12:36 am

    Jamison said,

    thanks mac and lucky!!

  2. June 1st, 2012 at 12:49 am

    David said,

    AR is switching to nonstop EZE-SYD in July I believe, so no more stop in AKL. Not that it makes the trip any better…. :)

  3. June 1st, 2012 at 5:36 am

    Phil said,

    I saw Mac’s comment. Then I saw the AR product. I’d rather pay the YQ on Virgin Australia than fly on a 25 year old product

  4. June 1st, 2012 at 7:56 am

    A. S. said,

    Another fine addition to SkyTeam. They seem to be competing for the “Most Pathetic Group of Misfit Airlines” category in the next Freddies… That, on the heels of the Saudia announcement! Impressive…

  5. June 1st, 2012 at 7:59 am

    A. S. said,

    Correction: Aerolineas hasn’t been added to SkyTeam, just Skymiles… My bad. Still, my insinuations about SkyTeam, Saudia, and Aerolineas stand! ;)

  6. June 1st, 2012 at 9:22 am

    Stephan said,

    Mac has a great eye for a deal, but…well, read some “AA” trip reviews on the internet…great if you don’t expect to actually fly and don’t expect much in the way of hard or soft product! My folks flew them and it was hands down their worse travel experience ever (in their words). Spend a few more miles and use LAN.

  7. June 1st, 2012 at 10:05 am

    lucky said,

    @ Phil — Except it has been months since I’ve seen even a single Virgin Australia business class award seat, unless I’m missing something. :(

  8. June 1st, 2012 at 9:58 pm

    Erik J said,

    Aerolineas might just be the worst flying experience of my life, and that includes pre-Glasnost Aeroflot, Ethiopian and Avianca. I was stuck flying them for almost a year during an Argentinean consulting assignment, and their Buenos Aires -Mendoza (equivalent to New Yor-Chicago) route, was two hours plus late or outright cancelled about 93% of the time.

  9. June 3rd, 2012 at 6:32 pm

    Pvc said,

    I would rather drive 1.000 miles from GRU to EZE than fly Aerolineas…

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