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Best Ways To Book Cathay Pacific First Class Using Points [Step-by-Step]

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Stephen Au
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Stephen Au

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Cathay Pacific ranks among the top airlines in the world for its first class seats, lounges, inflight catering, lounge dining, and amenities.

Luckily for us, we have several options for using miles and points to book Cathay Pacific first class. Let’s take a look at what you’ll get on this amazing flight and how you can book it!

A Look Inside Cathay Pacific First Class

Cathay Pacific 777 first class couples picture
Cathay Pacific’s first class is gigantic. It fit both of us comfortably! Image Credit: Stephen Au

With only 6 seats in first class, Cathay Pacific provides plenty of space for you to relax on your long-haul flights.

Not only is there a spacious first class cabin, but the seat itself is lie-flat and provides tons of room. Additionally, each seat has direct aisle access (as you’d expect from a first class cabin).

Cathay Pacific also excels with its on-demand dining in first class. This allows you to eat whenever you are hungry during the flight rather than being locked into a specific window of time. Considering flights from the U.S. are over 14 hours to Hong Kong, this is a great perk.

Don’t forget to order a glass of Champagne before takeoff. Cathay Pacific doesn’t skimp on Champagne for first class passengers: you can expect a wonderful glass (or 2) of the amazing Krug Champagne during your flight.

If this weren’t enough, Cathay Pacific really sets itself apart with its first class lounges. At its hub in Hong Kong, you will have access to both first class lounges: The Wing (First) and The Pier.

Each lounge provides an amazing dining experience complemented by a great selection of beverages.

The Wing even has a Champagne bar! Enough said.

Hot Tip: Check out our detailed Cathay Pacific 777 first class review from Hong Kong to San Francisco.

How To Book Cathay Pacific First Class

After that last piece of information, we’ll just assume you’re ready to learn how to book Cathay Pacific first class so you can be on your way!

Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan

Probably the best way to book Cathay Pacific award tickets, the Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan program has fantastic redemption rates and allows a stopover, even on one-way award flights. Here’s the award chart:

SCROLL FOR MORE
RouteCabin ClassAlaska Miles Cost (One-Way)
North America to Asia and the Middle EastEconomy30,000
Premium Economy35,000
Business50,000
First70,000
North America to Africa and the Indian SubcontinentEconomy50,000
Premium Economy55,000
Business62,500
First70,000
North America to Australia and New ZealandEconomy40,000
Premium Economy47,500
Business60,000
First80,000
Asia to EuropeEconomy30,000
Premium Economy35,000
Business42,500
First70,000
Intra-AsiaEconomy12,500
Premium Economy15,000
Business22,500
First27,500

Booking with Alaska Airlines requires a phone call, as you’ll see below:

  1. Visit British Airways and log in.
  2. Select your route, travel dates, and class of service.
  3. Note the flight number, date, and time.
  4. Call Alaska Airlines at 800-252-7522.
  5. Ask them to search for first class award space on Cathay Pacific for the appropriate date (you might have to provide the flight number).
  6. Provide all necessary info to complete the booking.

Additional options for booking Alaska awards can be found in our redemption article.

Earning Alaska Airlines Miles

At the moment, Alaska Airlines’ only transfer partner is Marriott Bonvoy.

To be specific, Marriott Bonvoy transfers at a rate of 3:1 to Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan. If you transfer 60,000 Marriott Bonvoy points to Alaska Airlines in a single transaction, you will earn a bonus of 5,000 Alaska Airlines miles.

Furthermore, Alaska Airlines has co-branded credit cards issued by Bank of America that allow you to earn miles directly.

Recommended Marriott Bonvoy Cards

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Marriott Bonvoy Bevy™ American Express® CardTerms Apply / Rates & Fees

Marriott Bonvoy Bevy™ American Express® Card

U.P. Rating
The rating for this card has been determined by our own industry experts who know the in's and out's of credit card products. Bonuses, rewards as well as rates and fees are all taken into account. Compensation from the issuer does not affect our rating. We only recommend products we either use ourselves or endorse.

The Marriott Bonvoy Bevy card gives you automatic Marriott elite status and helps you earn more Marriott Bonvoy points on your everyday purchases.

Learn More(at Amex's secure site)

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Marriott Bonvoy Bevy™ American Express® Card

The Marriott Bonvoy Bevy card gives you automatic Marriott elite status and helps you earn more Marriott Bonvoy points on your everyday purchases.
Earn 155,000 Marriott Bonvoy bonus points after you use your new Card to make $5,000 in purchases within the first 6 months of Card Membership.
155,000 points
$1,085
$250
20.99%-29.99% Variable
Upgraded Points credit ranges are a variation of FICO®Score 8, one of many types of credit scores lenders may use when considering your credit cardapplication.
Good to Excellent (670-850)

The Marriott Bonvoy Bevy™ American Express® Card, the latest mid-tier offering in the Marriott Bonvoy lineup of cards, offers cardholders automatic elite status and ways to earn more Marriott Bonvoy points on each of their stays and daily purchases.

Pros

  • 6x points per $1 at hotels participating in Marriott Bonvoy
  • 4x points per $1 at restaurants worldwide and U.S. supermarkets (on up to $15,000 in combined purchases per calendar year, then 2X points)
  • 2x points per $1 on all other purchases
  • Complimentary Marriott Bonvoy Gold Elite status
  • 15 Elite Night Credits per year
  • 1,000 bonus points per paid stay
  • 1 Free Night Award (up to 50,000 points) when you spend $15,000 on the card in a year
  • No foreign transaction fees (rates and fees)

Cons

  • $250 annual fee (rates and fees)
  • Free Night Award certificate is not an automatic benefit
  • Earn 155,000 Marriott Bonvoy bonus points after you use your new Card to make $5,000 in purchases within the first 6 months of Card Membership.
  • Earn 6X Marriott Bonvoy® points for each dollar of eligible purchases at hotels participating in Marriott Bonvoy.
  • Earn 4X points at restaurants worldwide and U.S. supermarkets (on up to $15,000 in combined purchases at restaurants and U.S. supermarkets per calendar year, then 2X points).
  • Earn 2X points on all other eligible purchases.
  • Marriott Bonvoy 1K Bonus Points Per Stay: Earn 1,000 Marriott Bonvoy® bonus points per paid eligible stay booked directly with Marriott for properties participating in Marriott Bonvoy.
  • With complimentary Marriott Bonvoy Gold Elites status, earn up to 2.5X points from Marriott Bonvoy® on eligible hotel purchases with the 25% Bonus Points on stays benefit, available for Qualifying Rates.
  • Marriott Bonvoy Bevy Free Night Award: Earn 1 Free Night Award after spending $15,000 on eligible purchases on your Marriott Bonvoy Bevy™ Card in a calendar year. Award can be used for one night (redemption level at or under 50,000 Marriott Bonvoy® points) at a hotel participating in Marriott Bonvoy®. Certain hotels have resort fees.
  • 15 Elite Night Credits: Each calendar year with your Marriott Bonvoy Bevy™ American Express Card® you can receive 15 Elite Night Credits toward the next level of Marriott Bonvoy® Elite status. Limitations apply per Marriott Bonvoy member account. Benefit is not exclusive to Cards offered by American Express. Terms apply.
  • Plan It® is a payment option that lets you split up purchases of $100 or more into equal monthly installments with a fixed fee. Plus, you'll still earn rewards the way you usually do.
  • $250 Annual Fee.
  • Terms apply.

Financial Snapshot

  • APR: 20.99%-29.99% Variable
  • Foreign Transaction Fees: None

Card Categories

NEW 185K WELCOME OFFER
Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant® American Express® CardTerms Apply / Rates & Fees

Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant® American Express® Card

U.P. Rating
The rating for this card has been determined by our own industry experts who know the in's and out's of credit card products. Bonuses, rewards as well as rates and fees are all taken into account. Compensation from the issuer does not affect our rating. We only recommend products we either use ourselves or endorse.

A premium card for Marriott fans who want perks like an annual statement credit and Free Night Award, plus a fast track to Marriott elite status.

Learn More(at Amex's secure site)

Apply With Confidence

Know if you're approved with no credit score impact

If you're approved and accept this Card, your credit score may be impacted.

Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant® American Express® Card

A premium card for Marriott fans who want perks like an annual statement credit and Free Night Award, plus a fast track to Marriott elite status.
Earn 185,000 Marriott Bonvoy bonus points after you use your new Card to make $6,000 in purchases within the first 6 months of Card Membership.
185,000 bonus points
$1,295
$650
20.99%-29.99% Variable
Upgraded Points credit ranges are a variation of FICO®Score 8, one of many types of credit scores lenders may use when considering your credit cardapplication.
Good to Excellent (670-850)

The Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant® American Express® Card is a premium card designed with road warriors and Marriott Bonvoy loyalists in mind.

So is the card a worthwhile addition to your wallet?

Pros

  • 6x points per $1 at hotels participating in Marriott Bonvoy program
  • 3x points per $1 on flights booked directly with airlines and restaurants worldwide
  • 2x points per $1 on all other purchases
  • 25 Elite Night Credits each year
  • Priority Pass Select membership upon enrollment
  • Global Entry or TSA PreCheck application fee statement credit
  • Annual Free Night Award after card renewal
  • Complimentary Platinum Elite status

Cons

  • Earn 185,000 Marriott Bonvoy bonus points after you use your new Card to make $6,000 in purchases within the first 6 months of Card Membership.
  • $300 Brilliant Dining Credit: Each calendar year, get up to $300 (up to $25 per month) in statement credits for eligible purchases made on the Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant® American Express® Card at restaurants worldwide.
  • With Marriott Bonvoy Platinum Elite status, you can receive room upgrades, including enhanced views or suites, when available at select properties and booked with a Qualifying Rate.
  • Earn 6X Marriott Bonvoy points for each dollar of eligible purchases at hotels participating in Marriott Bonvoy®. 3X points at restaurants worldwide and on flights booked directly with airlines. 2X points on all other eligible purchases.
  • Free Night Award: Receive 1 Free Night Award every year after your Card renewal month. Award can be used for one night (redemption level at or under 85,000 Marriott Bonvoy points) at hotels participating in Marriott Bonvoy®. Certain hotels have resort fees.
  • Each calendar year after spending $60,000 on eligible purchases on your Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant® American Express® Card, you will be eligible to select a Brilliant Earned Choice Award benefit. You can only earn one Earned Choice Award per calendar year. See https://www.choice-benefit.marriott.com/brilliant for Award options.
  • $100 Marriott Bonvoy Property Credit: Enjoy your stay. Receive up to a $100 property credit for qualifying charges at The Ritz-Carlton® or St. Regis® when you book direct using a special rate for a two-night minimum stay using your Card.
  • Fee Credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck®: Receive either a statement credit every 4 years after you apply for Global Entry ($100) or a statement credit every 4.5 years after you apply for a five-year membership for TSA PreCheck® (up to $85 through a TSA PreCheck official enrollment provider) and pay the application fee with your Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant® American Express® Card. If approved for Global Entry, at no additional charge, you will receive access to TSA PreCheck.
  • Each calendar year with your Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant® American Express® Card you can receive 25 Elite Night Credits toward the next level of Marriott Bonvoy® Elite status. Limitations apply per Marriott Bonvoy member account. Benefit is not exclusive to Cards offered by American Express. Terms apply.
  • Enroll in Priority Pass™ Select, which offers unlimited airport lounge visits to over 1,200 lounges in over 130 countries, regardless of which carrier or class you are flying. This allows you to relax before or between flights. You can enjoy snacks, drinks, and internet access in a quiet, comfortable location.
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees on international purchases.
  • With Cell Phone Protection, you can be reimbursed, the lesser of, your repair or replacement costs following damage, such as a cracked screen, or theft for a maximum of $800 per claim when your cell phone line is listed on a wireless bill and the prior month's wireless bill was paid by an Eligible Card Account. A $50 deductible will apply to each approved claim with a limit of 2 approved claims per 12-month period. Additional terms and conditions apply. Coverage is provided by New Hampshire Insurance Company, an AIG Company.
  • $650 Annual Fee.
  • Terms Apply.

Financial Snapshot

  • APR: 20.99%-29.99% Variable
  • Foreign Transaction Fees: None

Card Categories

Rewards Center

Marriott Bonvoy

Asia Miles

Cathay Pacific’s own frequent flyer program, Asia Miles, provides an easy way to book online.

Additionally, you can book a stopover, an open jaw, and/or include other partners in the booking to really take your trip to the next level. However, a call to Asia Miles will be required to book stopovers or an open jaw.

To complete a booking online, follow these simple steps:

  1. Go to Asia Miles.
  2. Log into your account.
  3. Scroll over Redeem Miles.
  4. Select Flight Awards from the drop-down menu.
  5. Enter your flight details.
    • Make sure you select Cathay Pacific.
  6. Select your desired flight.
    • Standard Awards are what you want to find (otherwise you will be overpaying).
  7. Review the mileage cost and the taxes/fees.
  8. Complete your first class booking.

Earning Cathay Pacific Asia Miles

Cathay Pacific Asia Miles has several transfer partners, including Amex Membership Rewards, Brex Rewards, Citi ThankYou Rewards, Capital One Miles, and Marriott Bonvoy.

Amex, Brex, Citi, and Capital One transfer at a 1:1 ratio. Amex and Brex transfer in around 1 business day, while Citi transfers almost instantly. Capital One may take up to 36 hours.

Marriott Bonvoy transfers to Asia Miles at a 3:1 rate. For every 60,000 Marriott Bonvoy points you transfer, you’ll receive 20,000 Asia Miles plus a bonus 5,000 miles, bringing your total up to 25,000 Asia Miles! Marriott Bonvoy takes around 5 business days to transfer to Asia Miles.

Hot Tip: Check out our Transfer Partner Tool to easily calculate how many miles you’ll need to transfer for your award.

Recommended American Express Cards (Personal)

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U.P. Rating
The rating for this card has been determined by our own industry experts who know the in's and out's of credit card products. Bonuses, rewards as well as rates and fees are all taken into account. Compensation from the issuer does not affect our rating. We only recommend products we either use ourselves or endorse.

The Amex Platinum reigns supreme for luxury travel, offering the best airport lounge access plus generous statement credits, and complimentary elite status.

Learn More(at Amex's secure site)

Apply With Confidence

Know if you're approved with no credit score impact

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The Platinum Card® from American Express

The Amex Platinum reigns supreme for luxury travel, offering the best airport lounge access plus generous statement credits, and complimentary elite status.
Earn 80,000 Membership Rewards® Points after you spend $8,000 on purchases on the Card in your first 6 months of Card Membership.
80,000 points
$1,760
$695
See Pay Over Time APR
Upgraded Points credit ranges are a variation of FICO®Score 8, one of many types of credit scores lenders may use when considering your credit cardapplication.
Good to Excellent (670-850)

When it comes to cards that offer top-notch benefits, you’d be hard-pressed to find a better card out there than The Platinum Card® from American Express.

Make no mistake — the Amex Platinum card is a premium card with a premium price tag. With amazing benefits like best-in-class airport lounge access, hotel elite status, and tremendous value in annual statement credits, it can easily prove to be one of the most lucrative cards in your wallet year after year.

Pros

  • The best airport lounge access out of any card (by far) — enjoy access to over 1,400 worldwide lounges, including the luxurious Amex Centurion Lounges, Priority Pass lounges, Plaza Premium Lounges, and many more!
  • 5x points per dollar spent on flights purchased directly with the airline or with AmexTravel.com (up to $500,000 per year)
  • 5x points per dollar spent on prepaid hotels booked with AmexTravel.com
  • Annual and monthly statement credits upon enrollment (airline credit, Uber Cash credit, Saks Fifth Avenue credit, streaming credit, prepaid hotel credit on eligible stays, Walmart+ credit, CLEAR credit, and Equinox credit)
  • TSA PreCheck or Global Entry credit
  • Access to American Express Fine Hotels and Resorts
  • Access to Amex International Airline Program
  • No foreign transaction fees (rates and fees)

Cons

  • $695 annual fee (rates and fees)
  • Airline credit does not cover airfare (only incidentals like checked bags)
  • Earn 80,000 Membership Rewards® Points after you spend $8,000 on purchases on your new Card in your first 6 months of Card Membership. Apply and select your preferred metal Card design: classic Platinum Card®, Platinum x Kehinde Wiley, or Platinum x Julie Mehretu.
  • Earn 5X Membership Rewards® Points for flights booked directly with airlines or with American Express Travel up to $500,000 on these purchases per calendar year and earn 5X Membership Rewards® Points on prepaid hotels booked with American Express Travel.
  • $200 Hotel Credit: Get up to $200 back in statement credits each year on prepaid Fine Hotels + Resorts® or The Hotel Collection bookings with American Express Travel when you pay with your Platinum Card®. The Hotel Collection requires a minimum two-night stay.
  • $240 Digital Entertainment Credit: Get up to $20 back in statement credits each month on eligible purchases made with your Platinum Card® on one or more of the following: Disney+, a Disney Bundle, ESPN+, Hulu, The New York Times, Peacock, and The Wall Street Journal. Enrollment required.
  • $155 Walmart+ Credit: Cover the cost of a $12.95 monthly Walmart+ membership (subject to auto-renewal) with a statement credit after you pay for Walmart+ each month with your Platinum Card®. Cost includes $12.95 plus applicable local sales tax. Plus Up Benefits are excluded.
  • $200 Airline Fee Credit: Select one qualifying airline and then receive up to $200 in statement credits per calendar year when incidental fees are charged by the airline to your Platinum Card®.
  • $200 Uber Cash: Enjoy Uber VIP status and up to $200 in Uber savings on rides or eats orders in the US annually. Uber Cash and Uber VIP status is available to Basic Card Member only. Terms Apply.
  • $300 Equinox Credit: Get up to $300 back in statement credits per calendar year on an Equinox membership, or an Equinox club membership (subject to auto-renewal) when you pay with your Platinum Card®. Enrollment required. Visit https://platinum.equinox.com/ to enroll.
  • $189 CLEAR® Plus Credit: Breeze through security with CLEAR Plus at 100+ airports, stadiums, and entertainment venues nationwide and get up to $189 back per calendar year on your Membership (subject to auto-renewal) when you use your Platinum Card®. Learn more.
  • $100 Global Entry Credit: Receive either a $100 statement credit every 4 years for a Global Entry application fee or a statement credit up to $85 every 4.5 years for a TSA PreCheck® (through a TSA official enrollment provider) application fee, when charged to your Platinum Card®. Card Members approved for Global Entry will also receive access to TSA PreCheck at no additional cost.
  • Shop Saks with Platinum: Get up to $100 in statement credits annually for purchases in Saks Fifth Avenue stores or at saks.com on your Platinum Card®. That's up to $50 in statement credits semi-annually. Enrollment required.
  • $300 SoulCycle At-Home Bike Credit: Get a $300 statement credit for the purchase of a SoulCycle at-home bike with your Platinum Card®. An Equinox+ subscription is required to purchase a SoulCycle at-home bike and access SoulCycle content. Must charge full price of bike in one transaction. Shipping available in the contiguous U.S. only. Enrollment Required.
  • Unlock access to exclusive reservations and special dining experiences with Global Dining Access by Resy when you add your Platinum Card® to your Resy profile.
  • $695 annual fee.
  • Terms Apply.

Financial Snapshot

  • APR: See Pay Over Time APR
  • Foreign Transaction Fees: None

Card Categories

Rewards Center

American Express Membership Rewards

BEST FOR DINING
American Express® Gold CardTerms Apply / Rates & Fees

American Express® Gold Card

U.P. Rating
The rating for this card has been determined by our own industry experts who know the in's and out's of credit card products. Bonuses, rewards as well as rates and fees are all taken into account. Compensation from the issuer does not affect our rating. We only recommend products we either use ourselves or endorse.

This is the best card for food lovers who dine out at restaurants (worldwide), order take-out and want big rewards at U.S. supermarkets!

Learn More(at Amex's secure site)

Apply With Confidence

Know if you're approved with no credit score impact

If you're approved and accept this Card, your credit score may be impacted.

American Express® Gold Card

This is the best card for food lovers who dine out at restaurants (worldwide), order take-out and want big rewards at U.S. supermarkets!
Earn 60,000 Membership Rewards® Points after you spend $6,000 on eligible purchases with your new Card within the first 6 months.
60,000 points
$1,320
$250
See Pay Over Time APR
Upgraded Points credit ranges are a variation of FICO®Score 8, one of many types of credit scores lenders may use when considering your credit cardapplication.
Good to Excellent (670-850)

The American Express® Gold Card is a game-changer.

With this card, you can earn 4x Membership Rewards points at restaurants and you’ll also earn 4x Membership Rewards points at U.S. supermarkets on up to $25,000 per calendar year in purchases, then 1x.

There isn’t another card on the market that offers a 1-2 punch like this. Of course, there are several other benefits of the Gold Card as well, including extra monthly dining rewards and more.

Pros

  • 4x points per dollar at restaurants, plus takeout and delivery in the U.S.
  • 4x points per dollar at U.S. supermarkets, up to $25,000 per calendar year in purchases; and 1x thereafter
  • 3x points per dollar on flights purchased directly from airlines or at Amex Travel
  • Up to $120 annual dining credit: up to $10 monthly statement credit when you pay with the Amex Gold card at Grubhub, The Cheesecake Factory, Goldbelly, Wine.com, Milk Bar and select Shake Shack locations
  • Up to $120 in annual Uber Cash: get $10 monthly in Uber Cash for Uber Eats orders or Uber rides in the U.S. when you add your Gold Card to your Uber account
  • No foreign transaction fees (see rates and fees)
  • Access to Amex’s The Hotel Collection
  • Access to American Express transfer partners

Cons

  • Earn 60,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $6,000 on eligible purchases with your new Card within the first 6 months of Card Membership.
  • Earn 4X Membership Rewards® Points at Restaurants, plus takeout and delivery in the U.S., and earn 4X Membership Rewards® points at U.S. supermarkets (on up to $25,000 per calendar year in purchases, then 1X).
  • Earn 3X Membership Rewards® points on flights booked directly with airlines or on amextravel.com.
  • $120 Uber Cash on Gold: Add your Gold Card to your Uber account and each month automatically get $10 in Uber Cash for Uber Eats orders or Uber rides in the U.S., totaling up to $120 per year.
  • $120 Dining Credit: Satisfy your cravings and earn up to $10 in statement credits monthly when you pay with the American Express® Gold Card at Grubhub, The Cheesecake Factory, Goldbelly, Wine.com, Milk Bar and select Shake Shack locations. Enrollment required.
  • Get a $100 experience credit with a minimum two-night stay when you book The Hotel Collection through American Express Travel. Experience credit varies by property.
  • Choose the color that suits your style. Gold or Rose Gold.
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees.
  • Annual Fee is $250.
  • Terms Apply.

Financial Snapshot

  • APR: See Pay Over Time APR
  • Foreign Transaction Fees: None

Card Categories

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American Express Membership Rewards

Business Owner? Check out our article on the best Amex business cards that earn Membership Rewards points.

American Airlines AAdvantage

American Airlines Partner Award Chart
Cathay Pacific first class can also be booked with your American miles. Image Credit: American Airlines

American Airlines AAdvantage is one of the most commonly used programs for booking Cathay Pacific first class. It’s especially useful if you need to first connect to an airport on an American Airlines flight where Cathay Pacific operates.

Hot Tip: One of the best benefits of AAdvantage is that the program allows you to book award holds for 5 days, even on online award bookings!

You can book Cathay Pacific first class flights completely online. Here’s what you need to know:

  1. Visit American Airlines’ website.
  2. On the homepage, fill in the route, travel dates, and class of service.
  3. Find suitable flight results.
  4. Enter the traveler’s information.
  5. Provide all necessary info to complete the booking or request the award hold. If you’re holding an award flight, you’ll need to call AAdvantage at 800-882-8880 to ticket the reservation.

Earning American Airlines AAdvantage Miles

American Airlines has just 2 transfer partners. Marriott Bonvoy transfers at a 3:1 ratio and Bilt Rewards transfer at a 1:1 ratio.

Lastly, American Airlines has co-branded credit cards with both Citi and Barclays, enabling you to earn American Airlines miles directly!

British Airways Executive Club

British Airways Executive Club is the last frequent flyer program we’ll discuss. Although its prices are sky-high, BA Executive Club is pretty much the only useful option for booking Cathay Pacific first class using Chase Ultimate Rewards points.

This program uses a distance-based award chart for Cathay Pacific first class flights as follows:

SCROLL FOR MORE
Zone Flight DistanceFirst Class Avios Cost
11 to 65024,000
2651 to 1,15133,000
31,152 to 2,00044,000
42,001 to 3,00051,500
53,001 to 4,00082,500
64,001 to 5,500103,000
75,501 to 6,500123,750
86,501 to 7,000144,250
97,000+206,000

Keep in mind this is the one-way flight price, so a round-trip will simply cost twice as much as the one-way cost.

Here’s how you can book a Cathay Pacific first class ticket using Avios:

  1. Visit British Airways’ website and log in using your British Airways Executive Club account.
  2. After logging in, hover over the Book button on the top banner and click Book a flight with Avios under Flights.
  3. Fill in the search details and choose First as the cabin class.
  4. Find a suitable Cathay Pacific flight, redeem your Avios, and use a credit card for taxes and fees.

Earning British Airways Avios

British Airways Executive Club is the only frequent flyer program in this guide that is a Chase ultimate rewards travel partner.

Chase transfers almost instantly to British Airways at a 1:1 ratio.

British Airways is also an Amex transfer partner, a Capital One transfer partner and a Marriott transfer partner.

You can transfer from Amex and Capital One at a 1:1 ratio almost instantly, while Marriott Bonvoy transfers at a 3:1 ratio in 3 business days. You’ll receive a bonus of 5,000 Avios when you transfer 60,000 Marriott Bonvoy points to British Airways in a single transaction.

Lastly, you can earn British Airways Avios from the co-branded Chase credit card, as well as transfer Avios from Iberia Plus or Aer Lingus AerClub to British Airways Executive Club.

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The rating for this card has been determined by our own industry experts who know the in's and out's of credit card products. Bonuses, rewards as well as rates and fees are all taken into account. Compensation from the issuer does not affect our rating. We only recommend products we either use ourselves or endorse.

A fantastic travel card with a huge welcome offer, good benefits, and perks for a moderate annual fee.

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Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

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Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®.
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$95
21.49%-28.49% Variable
Upgraded Points credit ranges are a variation of FICO®Score 8, one of many types of credit scores lenders may use when considering your credit cardapplication.
Good to Excellent (670-850)

The Chase Sapphire Preferred® card is one of the best travel rewards cards on the market. Its bonus categories include travel, dining, online grocery purchases, and streaming services, which gives you the opportunity to earn lots of bonus points on these purchases.

Additionally, it offers flexible point redemption options, no foreign transaction fees, and excellent travel insurance coverage including primary car rental insurance. With benefits like these, it’s easy to see why this card is an excellent choice for any traveler.

Pros

  • 5x points on all travel booked via the Chase Travel portal
  • 5x points on select Peloton purchases over $150 (through March 31, 2025)
  • 5x points on Lyft purchases (through March 31, 2025)
  • 3x points on dining purchases, online grocery purchases, and select streaming services
  • 2x points on all other travel worldwide
  • $50 annual credit on hotel stays booked through the Chase Travel portal
  • 6 months of complimentary Instacart+ (activate by July 31, 2024), plus up to $15 in statement credits each quarter through July 2024
  • Excellent travel and car rental insurance
  • 10% annual bonus points
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • 1:1 point transfer to leading airline and hotel loyalty programs like United MileagePlus and World of Hyatt

Cons

  • $95 annual fee
  • No elite benefits like airport lounge access or hotel elite status
  • Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 when you redeem through Chase Travel℠.
  • Enjoy benefits such as 5x on travel purchased through Chase Travel℠, 3x on dining, select streaming services and online groceries, 2x on all other travel purchases, 1x on all other purchases, $50 Annual Chase Travel Hotel Credit, plus more.
  • Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Travel℠. For example, 60,000 points are worth $750 toward travel.
  • Count on Trip Cancellation/Interruption Insurance, Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver, Lost Luggage Insurance and more.
  • Get complimentary access to DashPass which unlocks $0 delivery fees and lower service fees for a minimum of one year when you activate by December 31, 2024.
  • Member FDIC

Financial Snapshot

  • APR: 21.49%-28.49% Variable
  • Foreign Transaction Fees: None

Card Categories

Rewards Center

Chase Ultimate Rewards

Chase Sapphire Reserve®

Chase Sapphire Reserve®

U.P. Rating
The rating for this card has been determined by our own industry experts who know the in's and out's of credit card products. Bonuses, rewards as well as rates and fees are all taken into account. Compensation from the issuer does not affect our rating. We only recommend products we either use ourselves or endorse.

A top player in the high-end premium travel credit card space that earns 3x points on travel and dining while offering top luxury perks.

Learn More(at Chase's secure site)

Chase Sapphire Reserve®

A top player in the high-end premium travel credit card space that earns 3x points on travel and dining while offering top luxury perks.
Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $900 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Travel.
60,000 points
$1,200
$550
22.49%-29.49% Variable
Upgraded Points credit ranges are a variation of FICO®Score 8, one of many types of credit scores lenders may use when considering your credit cardapplication.
Excellent (740-850)

If you’re looking for an all-around excellent travel rewards card, the Chase Sapphire Reserve® is one of the best options out there.

The card combines elite travel benefits and perks like airport lounge access, with excellent point earning and redemption options.  Plus it offers top-notch travel insurance protections to keep you covered whether you’re at home or on the road.

Don’t forget the $300 annual travel credit which really helps to reduce the annual fee!

Pros

  • 10x total points on hotels and car rentals when you purchase travel through Chase TravelSM immediately after the first $300 is spent on travel purchases annually
  • 10x points on Lyft purchases March 31, 2025
  • 10x points on Peloton equipment and accessory purchases over $250 through March 31, 2025
  • 5x points on airfare booked through Chase TravelSM
  • 3x points on all other travel and dining purchases; 1x point on all other purchases
  • $300 annual travel credit
  • Priority Pass airport lounge access
  • TSA PreCheck, Global Entry, or NEXUS credit
  • Access to Chase Luxury Hotel and Resort Collection
  • Rental car elite status with National and Avis

Cons

  • $550 annual fee
  • Does not offer any sort of hotel elite status
  • Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $900 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Travel℠.
  • $300 Annual Travel Credit as reimbursement for travel purchases charged to your card each account anniversary year.
  • Earn 5x total points on flights and 10x total points on hotels and car rentals when you purchase travel through Chase Travel℠ immediately after the first $300 is spent on travel purchases annually. Earn 3x points on other travel and dining & 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases
  • Get 50% more value when you redeem your points for travel through Chase Travel℠. For example, 60,000 points are worth $900 toward travel.
  • 1:1 point transfer to leading airline and hotel loyalty programs
  • Access to 1,300+ airport lounges worldwide after an easy, one-time enrollment in Priority Pass™ Select and up to $100 application fee credit every four years for Global Entry, NEXUS, or TSA PreCheck®
  • Count on Trip Cancellation/Interruption Insurance, Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver, Lost Luggage Insurance and more
  • Member FDIC

Financial Snapshot

  • APR: 22.49%-29.49% Variable
  • Foreign Transaction Fees: None

Card Categories

Rewards Center

Chase Ultimate Rewards

Business Owner? Check out our article on the best Chase business cards that earn Ultimate Rewards points.

Other Options For Booking Cathay Pacific

You can also book Cathay Pacific awards with Japan Airlines Mileage Bank, Qantas Frequent Flyer points, or Finnair Plus miles.

Great Cathay Pacific First Class Redemptions

Cathay Pacific A350 900 aircraft
You have lots of options to fly Cathay Pacific first class from the U.S. Image Credit: Cathay Pacific

Each program we have discussed is useful in its own way. Your current miles and points balances, where you live, and the flexibility of your travel dates will help determine which program is best for you.

Alaska Airlines will allow you to use the fewest miles to book first class. American Airlines makes connecting to your Cathay Pacific flight easier from many parts of the U.S. Cathay Pacific’s own program, Asia Miles, releases more award space to its own members. Lastly, British Airways is the best option if you are a Chase Ultimate Rewards loyalist.

Here are a few round-trip bookings to consider if you want to try Cathay Pacific first class:

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DepartureDestinationCathay Pacific Asia MilesAmerican MilesAlaska MilesBritish Airways Avios
Boston (BOS)Hong Kong (HKG)250,000220,000140,000412,000
Los Angeles (LAX)Hong Kong (HKG)220,000220,000140,000412,000
New York (JFK)Hong Kong (HKG)250,000220,000140,000412,000
San Francisco (SFO)Hong Kong (HKG)220,000220,000140,000288,500
Hong Kong (HKG)Frankfurt (FRA)200,000180,000140,000247,500
Hong Kong (HKG)London (LHR)200,000180,000140,000247,500
Hong Kong (HKG)Milan (MXP)200,000180,000140,000247,500
Hong Kong (HKG)Paris (CDG)200,000180,000140,000247,500
Hong Kong (HKG)Tokyo (TYO)80,00080,00055,00088,000

Hot Tip: Don’t miss our deep dive into Cathay’s U.S.-based routes, including plane types and seating/cabin options. 

Remember, Alaska Airlines’ award tickets allow stopovers on one-way tickets, but you can only fly 1 partner per itinerary. This limits you to stopovers in Hong Kong when flying Cathay Pacific.

Cathay Pacific allows stopovers on round-trip tickets and does not have the same “1-partner” limitation.

American Airlines does not allow stopovers, so you can only visit the destination on your itinerary.

British Airways allows stopovers, but these are known as multicity awards, which are governed by a more expensive award chart.

Bottom Line: Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan boasts the best redemption prices across the board, but Asia Miles is likely the most accessible option in terms of transfer partnerships. British Airways is one of the only Chase transfer partners that can book Cathay Pacific first class tickets. 

How To Earn Enough Miles for Cathay Pacific First Class

Cathay Pacific first class is easy to book, provided you find award space.

Cathay Pacific Asia Miles has the best access to award availability, and all of its other major partners have the same partner-level availability, regardless of which exact partner you book with.

Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan has the best redemption prices, while Asia Miles is likely the most practical frequent flyer program you’ll be booking with, thanks to an abundance of transfer partners.

Here’s the summary of transfer partnerships corresponding to each frequent flyer program:

  • Amex Membership Rewards points transfer to Cathay Pacific Asia Miles and British Airways Executive Club at a 1:1 ratio in 1 business day and almost instantly, respectively.
  • Brex Rewards points transfer to Cathay Pacific Asia Miles at a 1:1 ratio in 1 business day.
  • Chase Ultimate Rewards points transfer to British Airways Executive Club at a 1:1 ratio in 1 business day.
  • Citi ThankYou Points transfer to Cathay Pacific Asia Miles at a 1:1 ratio almost instantly.
  • Capital One miles transfer to Cathay Pacific Asia Miles and British Airways Executive Club at a 1:1 ratio in 36 hours and almost instantly, respectively.
  • Marriott Bonvoy points transfer to Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan (4 days), American Airlines AAdvantage (2 days), Cathay Pacific Asia Miles (5 days), and British Airways Executive Club (3 days).

It’s generally very rare to see transfer bonuses with Cathay Pacific Asia Miles, but British Airways Executive Club offers transfer bonuses of up to 40% quite often!

In particular, British Airways transfer bonuses are most common with Amex Membership Rewards, followed by Citi and Chase.

When Should You Search for Award Space?

Cathay Pacific first class is an incredibly easy ticket to book if you’re a solo traveler but incredibly difficult to book for 2 travelers.

You can pretty much forget about booking Cathay Pacific first class for more than 2 passengers on the same flight.

Cathay Pacific often releases 1 first class award ticket to partners around 331 days prior to departure. If you don’t see space when you search, there are often 1 or 2 award seats available within 2 weeks of departure.

While first class award space isn’t always the easiest to find, you can sometimes find a single seat if you check back regularly.

Asia Miles has the distinct advantage of receiving access to award space about 12 months prior to departure. Additionally, Asia Miles has access to more award space, making it much easier to book through this program.

If your travel plans aren’t very flexible, Asia Miles could be your best bet for finding first class award space.

What Do You Get With Cathay Pacific First Class?

Let’s talk a bit more about what you get from the Cathay Pacific first class experience.

First Class Lounges

When flying out of or through Cathay Pacific’s hub in Hong Kong, you will have access to several lounges.

The Wing and The Pier provide exclusive access for first class passengers to make the journey even more fun.

The Wing Lounge

The Wing, First at Hong Kong International Airport champagne bar
Enjoy a glass of Champagne at The Wing’s famous Champagne bar. Image Credit: Cathay Pacific

The Wing is Cathay Pacific’s flagship lounge where a section is reserved for first class passengers.

You’ll have access to a noodle bar and a coffee bar during your visit. The Wing even has a Champagne bar where you can choose from several types of Champagne. There’s nothing like Champagne and first-class flying!

The Haven, which is the in-lounge restaurant, provides both buffet and à la carte dining with your choice of wine, beer, or liquor. There are also suggested wine pairings that can help you choose.

If you’re tired or just have a long layover, first class passengers have access to 5 cabanas complete with a shower, bathtub, and bed. There are also 12 showers available if you’d like to refresh between flights.

The Pier Lounge

The Pier, First Lounge at Hong Kong International Airport day suite
If you’d like total privacy while you wait for your flight, you can spend some time in one of 8 day suites at The Pier. Image Credit: Stephen Au

The Pier is another option if you’re looking for a first class lounge where you can relax.

From the noodle bar to the tea lounge, you’ll have a wonderful time before catching a flight.

There are 8 individual day suites if you’d like even more privacy; they even have views of the tarmac so you can have some fun plane spotting.

If you just need a quick shower to refresh, there are 14 shower rooms at your disposal.

First Class Dining

Cathay Pacific First Class 777 - Seat 1A Front
Image Credit: Alex Miller

Whether you’re in the mood for noodles at the noodle bar, an à la carte experience paired with wine, or simply a buffet meal, Cathay Pacific will take care of you from the moment you set foot in the lounge.

Once onboard, you’ll enjoy Krug Champagne, an amuse-bouche, and caviar. Not a bad way to start a flight!

The food has received mixed reviews (this is relative to other first class products, of course), but the inflight breakfast is highly regarded.

On those long flights to and from the U.S., it’s nice to have a great breakfast before landing.

First Class Service

First class service differs from what you might find on other airlines. There is a stark contrast between the service in Singapore Airlines Suites class and what you’ll experience with Cathay Pacific.

Both provide excellent service, but they do so in very different ways. While flight attendants on Singapore Airlines are always moving through the cabin to make sure you have everything you need, Cathay Pacific takes a more hands-off approach.

That doesn’t mean they aren’t fantastic though; you just need to use the call button.

While many of us are not accustomed to using the call button, this is how service works on Cathay Pacific. They stay out of your way and keep the first class cabin quiet, but if you need something, they’ll be there instantly and happy to help.

Final Thoughts

Cathay Pacific first class has earned its reputation as one of the best products in the sky. From a wonderful lounge experience to the inflight service, you won’t regret flying with the airline.

With several ways to earn the necessary miles and a few different ways to book, you can quickly be on your way to a world-class experience in first class.

The information regarding the Marriott Bonvoy Bold® Credit Card was independently collected by Upgraded Points and not provided nor reviewed by the issuer.
The information regarding the Marriott Bonvoy Boundless® Credit Card was independently collected by Upgraded Points and not provided nor reviewed by the issuer.
The information regarding the Chase Freedom Flex℠ was independently collected by Upgraded Points and not provided nor reviewed by the issuer.

For rates and fees of the Marriott Bonvoy Bevy™ American Express® Card, click here.
For rates and fees of the Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant® American Express® card, click here.
For rates and fees of The Platinum Card® from American Express, click here.
For rates and fees of the American Express® Gold Card, click here.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the best way to book Cathay Pacific first class?

The cheapest way to book first class on Cathay Pacific is usually with Alaska Mileage Plan, but Asia Miles and AA miles can also be a good bet.

British Airways Executive Club doesn’t have great prices, but it’s the best Chase transfer partner.

What credit cards can help me earn miles to fly Cathay Pacific first class?

You can earn Cathay Pacific Asia Miles through cards that are part of American Express Membership Rewards, Citi ThankYou Rewards, Capital One Miles, Brex Rewards, or Marriott Bonvoy.

You can also sign up for the Alaska Airlines credit cards from Bank of America and redeem Alaska miles for Cathay Pacific first class.

The same is true for American Airlines credit cards from Citi and Barclays.

What do I get when flying Cathay Pacific first class?

With a first class cabin of only 6 seats, you’ll have plenty of privacy during your flight and great service.

Before your flight, you can enjoy one of the first class lounges where you can get an awesome meal and have a drink.

Whether inflight or in the lounge, you’ll always have Champagne to enjoy.

Does the Cathay Pacific A350 have first class?

The A350 is not equipped with first class. The only plane with Cathay Pacific first class is the 4-cabin, 777-300ER aircraft. These planes are flown exclusively to U.S. and Europe gateway airports, as well as Tokyo, on occasion.

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About Stephen Au

Stephen is an established voice in the credit card space, with over 70 to his name. His work has been in publications like The Washington Post, and his Au Points and Awards Consulting Services is used by hundreds of clients.

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