As a frequent flyer, it is key to make good use of our hard-earned miles and points. The more points we get, the more. Most people who join a frequent flyer program don’t know that the most lucrative way to redeem points is on flights! Instead, they exchange 50.000 points for something like this:
DON’T. Just buy the frying pan. You can get a much better value by redeeming a free flight to an exotic destination. But how do you find those flights? Airlines provide their own website and search engine, but they all suffer the same issue: they are slow, old, and it takes forever to find a reward!
ExpertFlyer is a website and tool that has been around for a long time, helping flyers identify good award flights. Unfortunately, it is not meant for the new mobile world and is not using the latest web technologies. So, what are the best ExpertFlyer alternatives in 2023?
This post covers the most modern tools for frequent flyers, including the most advanced search engines for award seats. Let’s dive in!
What Is The Best ExpertFlyer Alternative In 2023?
Simply put, AwardFares is the world’s fastest search engine for award flights. It searches across multiple frequent flyer programs, displays real-time availability for multiple dates, monitors and alerts you via email when spaces opens, and has a handy trip planner.
AwardFares Key Features
- Free Trial
- Fast and easy to use.
- Modern user interface that works on mobile.
- Easy to understand and explore available award seats.
- Advanced filters (cabin type, airlines, number of stops, etc.).
- Best search tool for Star Alliance flights.
- Support for American Airlines AAdvantage, Alaska MileagePlan, SAS EuroBonus, United Mileage Plus, Air Canada Aeroplan, and more coming soon.
- Alerts for specific routes and dates. When award seats become available that match the alert criteria, AwardFares sends an email notification.
- Awesome trip planner to pick flights in sequence (open jaw, round the world, etc.)
- Pricing options for both casual (Gold) and hardcore users (Diamond).
Point.me is a free online search tool designed to assist users in finding the best use for their travel reward points or miles. It aims to simplify the process of award travel booking by showing users how they can leverage their points across various frequent flyer programs. Point.me also offers a forum and a concierge service that can help book award flights and hotels.
Point.me Key Features
- Wide Airline Coverage.
- Flexible Search Parameters: Users can input their desired route and dates, and the tool will show available award flights and the points required for each option.
- Point Cost Estimation: Point.me estimates the points or miles required for each potential flight. This makes it easier to compare options across different programs.
- Simple and intuitive interface.
- No Booking Function. Similar to other award travel search tools, Point.me doesn’t provide booking functionality. After finding a flight, you will need to book the flight directly through the airline or relevant booking platform.
SeatSpy is a recent tool that helps you find award seat availability on British Airways Executive Club and Virgin Atlantic Flying Club. It operates on a “freemium” model, which means you can complete a limited number of economy award searches for free. However, you’ll need to pay for a premium subscription to perform searches for premium cabins, set up award alerts, and perform unlimited award searches.
SeatSpy Key Features
- Free Trial
- Real-Time searches award seat availability. Just BA and Virgin Atlantic.
- Easy to use and simple interface.
- Alerts for specific routes and dates. When award seats become available that match the alert criteria, SeatSpy sends an email notification.
- Detailed information. The search results show detailed information about each flight, including the number of rewards and upgrade seats available.
- Advanced filters (cabin type, stops, passengers).
- Pricing. SeatSpy offers both free and paid tiers. The free version offers limited features, while the paid tiers provide more comprehensive services and faster alert notifications.
4. Award Nexus
Award Nexus is a premium online tool for frequent flyers who use reward points or miles to book flights. It’s a powerful search engine that helps users find available award seats on flights across various airline alliances and frequent flyer programs. However, Award Nexus is only a premium service, meaning users must pay for access. They offer limited free accounts just for users at FlyerTalk or BoardingArea.
Award Nexus Key Features
- Multiple Airline Search.
- Alerts. They call it “automated searches”. Award Nexus can continually check for award space and notify users via email when it becomes available.
- Flexible simultaneous searches for multiple dates and routes.
- Detailed flight Information (number of stops, duration, aircraft type).
- Easy-to-use interface, although it looks dated compared to other tools.
AwardHacker is an interesting proposal. The platform is a free product from US Credit Card Guide, and can show you the best possible redemption options, but it does not contain availability info. Therefore, you are not allowed to input dates in AwardHacker, and you need to check the availability info on the official websites of the mileage programs.
I listed it in this position because, in a way, it can be a great complement to a tool like AwardFares: you can look first at the desired routes in AwardHacker, and then use AwardFares to search for available seats on that route.
AwardHacker Key Features
- Broad Airline Coverage.
- Flexible search parameters but no dates (since it doesn’t show up availability).
- Mileage Estimation.
- Routing Information (useful for planning travel).
- Search Tool Only. It’s important to remember that AwardHacker is a search tool only and doesn’t provide booking functionality.
6. KVS Tool
KVS Tool is an ancient legacy. It stands for KVS Availability Tool, and it is one of the pioneers in the space. It’s primarily used to search for flight availability, including award and upgrade availability, across a wide range of airlines and alliances. The tool can also provide fare information, seat maps, and more.
KVS Tool Key Features
- Wide Airline and Alliance Coverage.
- Flexible Search Parameters.
- Fare Information. In addition to flight availability, KVS Tool can provide fare codes and fare information, which can be useful for understanding pricing and booking class availability.
- Seat Maps and Aircraft Information. The tool can provide seat maps and detailed aircraft information, which can be helpful when selecting seats or comparing flights.
- Subscription-Based. KVS Tool operates on a subscription model, with different levels of access and features available depending on the subscription tier.
conclusion: Best ExpertFlyer Alternatives
Using the right tool can make a huge difference in the value you get back from your frequent flyer points or miles. Trust me when I say it can be a radical difference from a seat in Basic Economy to a 2-for-1 in First Class (like in this flight I booked for only $130 thanks to AwardFares).
ExpertFlyer has been really useful in the past, but sadly the tool is not up-to-date with the most modern web requirements, devices, and frequent flyer needs.
My top choice for 2023 is AwardFares: super fast, easy-to-see results, free limited searches, and great paid features; it has been my go-to tool as a SAS EuroBonus member and now as an American Airlines AAdvantage member.
In addition, Point.me can be a great option if you want to relax and have someone else take care of finding and booking the flights for you. Lastly, SeatSpy can be a great choice if you are a heavy British Airways or Virgin Atlantic flyer.
Feel free to let me know your thoughts and comments below, and you can also reach out to me on Instagram at any time!
Other posts you’ll love
- Award Flight Search Engines: The FULL List (2023)
- New AwardFares Features! Support for American AAdvantage, Alaska MileagePlan, And More (2023)
- Meet AwardFares Creators: Interview with Philip Bergqvist and Richard Simko (2023)
- Roame Travel: A New Search Engine For Award Flights That Takes 12 Seconds (2023 Review)