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Are Turkish Airlines Star Alliance Awards No Longer Bookable?

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Turkish Airlines Star Alliance Awards No Longer Bookable

Are Turkish Airlines Star Alliance Awards No Longer Bookable?

Last month I wrote about how you can now book Turkish Airlines awards online, something I discovered while poking around on the website. The functionality certainly wasn’t full-fledged, and there were multiple issues, including the inability to book one-way awards. Some airports also wouldn’t show.

But there is a workaround: call up Turkish. This is how I had to book all of my award tickets in the past month. It’s a bit tedious, but three out of four agents I spoke with were knowledgeable and able to book my desired award, including an amazing premium cabin award for 12,500 miles. Miles & Smiles are one of the best options for booking transcontinental lie-flat awards.

However, I’ve run into issues this week which leads me to question, are Turkish Airlines Star Alliance awards no longer bookable?

Striking Out Booking a Turkish Star Alliance Award by Phone

Earlier this week I called Turkish to price out a Star Alliance award. The ticket was in business class within North America on United and Avianca metal, which should require just 15,000 Miles & Smiles one way. Knowing that I wanted to only book a one-way ticket, I didn’t even bother with the Turkish website, since these awards are not supported.

I struck out with the first agent I called. He informed me that while he could see the flights, there weren’t any business class awards available. I was looking at I-class space on the United website, and no matter what I did, the agent couldn’t find it. Even if I just had him search the longest segment individually, he couldn’t price it out.

Turkish Airlines Star Alliance Awards No Longer Bookable

Figuring I just got an inept agent, I called back the next day to try again. This time I struck out even faster. The agent informed me that she couldn’t price out an award and that the “system wasn’t functioning”, instructing me to “call back in a few days”. A few days? Really?

This was worrisome, to say the least. What sort of outage takes a few days to resolve? Are there other changes being made?

Is Turkish Limiting Star Alliance Bookings, at Least Temporarily?

When I went to the website the following day, things got even more perplexing. A couple weeks ago, I could find all sorts of award space online with Turkish. You could find nearly every single Star Alliance partner online. Not everything showed, to be sure. And some of the results were wonky. But there were plenty of domestic economy awards, business class space on Lufthansa, and many other searchable options.

Now, no matter what I search, no results are returned. Nothing. Every time. It’s maddening. All I get is this:

Turkish Airlines Star Alliance Awards No Longer Bookable


It appears, least based on my own anecdotal evidence, that Turkish has likely pulled their Star Alliance award capabilities temporarily. I hope that this isn’t a long-term problem. If they can at least get their phone agents able to book awards again, that would be lovely.

This leads me back to one of my initial conclusions from when I first starting working with the Turkish Airlines Star Alliance tool online: it may have been a beta version that shouldn’t have been released.

Has anyone been able to book a Turkish Airlines Star Alliance award ticket, either online or over the phone, in the past week or so?

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Ian Snyder
Ian Snyder
After igniting his passion for award travel while planning his honeymoon, Ian now enjoys using points and miles to see the world with his wife and three internationally adopted kiddos. He loves dissecting loyalty programs to find maximum value. His goal is to demonstrate that extraordinary travel is possible for the ordinary family.

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  1. Any new data points here? I just tried for a OGG–>ORD–> LGA one way flight next summer, and was told none were showing, even though United had at least 3 flights w/ coach class saver fares the day I asked about. I may call back, but before I start calling repeatedly, I was curious if we have had any reports of successes this week.

  2. There are also some oddities in TK metal award availability for next summer – suddenly there is not a single seat on TK 54/55 IST-SIN for months at a time, no seats into the UK etc. Yet Paris is wide open

    Hopefully it all gets straightened out soon! Will be following your updates as a LOT Polish seat would be my alternative

    • I know Ryan, another MtM contributor, has noticed similar oddities in what they’ve released. I’ll certainly keep tabs on the status of the system. I’d hate to lose them as an option!

  3. I was able to get economy tickets booked today, I think, to Hawaii. I tried to call them all week and they said that their system interface with United is down. The agents each said they don’t know when the system will get fixed. So, I got ahold of the local office by email, well, the closest one to me (meaning in my state). I have an email and text message today saying that the tickets have been booked, but it is not yet showing on the site or app. Fingers crossed, but I “think” it is happening.

      • It worked out for me. Not fun having to email them and wait, at times, almost 24 hours for a return email. But it worked out and at 15,000 miles to/from Hawaii, it is a great deal!

        • Did you provide the passenger passport page and credit card information electronically, by filling out the form they sent you ?

  4. I was able to book award LAX to Honolulu, Honolulu to SFO via email. I’ve emailed all US offices, but it seems that only 3 were willing to do it. It ticketed yesterday 9/26/19.

  5. Ian, I wonder if this points to a larger issue with Turkish and Star Alliance partners. Remember our discussion the other day that TK isn’t offering several of their long-distance flights to any of their partners for anything but economy? Odd that a flight that clearly exists has absolutely 0 availability in business, economy only, for months on end.

  6. I cannot find anything to Hawaii on United to use that 12.5K mile rate. I have the Mileage Plus credit card, but exit out of the sign up to see what is truly available and just nothing shows. Help if you can.

    • My two-step process to find these awards:
      1) Do all your searching on the United website. Assuming you’re looking at business/first to Hawaii for 12,500 miles, you’ll be hard pressed to find space. Most often, you can only pick up seats close-in (like <2 weeks from departure).
      2) If you do find space (you're looking for I-class) call up Turkish. But like I mentioned, I've struck out on this, and I know of at least one other person who has as well.

      Also, you must be using Turkish miles, not United miles, to get that 12,500-mile price.

      • Ian, Thanks. I have TM&S account. Now trying to find space next year from SAV-LAX. Like others say, neither their app or the website, work with one-ways. UA seems to be holding saver Bus. Class to the last couple of weeks. My hope would be to get an economy award and then change to Bus. class in the last couple a weeks before my trip. The routing I want is SAV-EWR-LAX to hopefully get a Polaris seat from EWR.

        Also, when checking for availabilty on UA, I do not sign in to see what is available to everyone.

  7. In the past I have booked business awards on Turkish Airlines with no problem, including star alliance and one way. For the past 4 months, the website hasn’t showed anything and my emails to the airlines were a big waste of time! This is really a shame as it use to be my fav. Anything you can do?

    • Nothing I know of that I can do. I’m sure you can book awards on their own metal over the phone. I’m gonna call once a week and see if anything changes.


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