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The Best Ways To Fly to Central America With Points and Miles [Step-by-Step]

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Stephen Au
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Stephen Au

Former Senior Content Contributor

483 Published Articles

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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...
Edited by: Keri Stooksbury
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Keri Stooksbury

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With years of experience in corporate marketing and as the executive director of the American Chamber of Commerce in Qatar, Keri is now editor-in-chief at UP, overseeing daily content operations and r...
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Kellie Jez

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Kellie’s professional experience has led her to a deep passion for compliance, data reporting, and process improvement. Kellie’s learned the ins and outs of the points and miles world and leads UP’s c...

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Central America is a particularly interesting part of the world, home to several vibrant countries and 7% of the planet’s total biodiversity, despite occupying just 0.1% of Earth’s land.

Travelers flock to the region to see sights like the Great Blue Hole in Belize, Mayan pyramids in Guatemala and Honduras, and the picturesque beaches of Costa Rica. You can even find bustling metropolises in Panama if you’re a city slicker.

Regardless of what ends up drawing you to Central America, let’s review all of the best ways to fly to this fascinating region using points and miles.

Nonstop Flights Between the U.S. and Central America

Thanks to the region’s proximity to the U.S., plenty of airlines fly nonstop between the U.S. and Central America.

In our guide, we’ve defined the following countries to be part of Central America:

  • Belize — Belize City (BZE)
  • Costa Rica — Liberia (LIR), San José (SJO)
  • El Salvador — San Salvador (SAL)
  • Guatemala — Guatemala City (GUA)
  • Honduras — Coxen Hole (RTB), San Pedro Sula (SAP), Tegucigalpa (TGU)
  • Nicaragua — Managua (MGA)
  • Panama — Panama City (PTY)

Like we mentioned, numerous airlines, including low-cost carriers Frontier, Spirit, and Volaris, fly nonstop to the region. However, we’ve excluded these from this guide, which will focus on the best ways to get outsized value from your points.

The main foreign carriers offering nonstop flights to Central America are Avianca and Copa Airlines.

In addition, nonstop flights are offered by major U.S. carriers, including Alaska Airlines, American Airlines, Delta Air Lines, and United Airlines. JetBlue even offers some flights with its lauded Mint business class.

Check out the domestic airlines offering nonstop flights:

Alaska Airlines

  • Los Angeles (LAX) – Belize City (BZE)
  • Los Angeles (LAX) – Liberia (LIR)
  • Los Angeles (LAX) – San José (SJO)
  • Seattle (SEA) – Belize City (BZE)

American Airlines

  • Austin (AUS) – Liberia (LIR)
  • Chicago (ORD) – Guatemala City (GUA)
  • Dallas (DFW) – Belize City (BZE)
  • Dallas (DFW) – Guatemala City (GUA)
  • Dallas (DFW) – Liberia (LIR)
  • Dallas (DFW) – San José (SJO)
  • Dallas (DFW) – San Pedro Sula (SAP)
  • Dallas (DFW) – San Salvador (SAL)
  • Miami (MIA) – Belize City (BZE)
  • Miami (MIA) – Guatemala City (GUA)
  • Miami (MIA) – Liberia (LIR)
  • Miami (MIA) – Managua (MGA)
  • Miami (MIA) – Panama City (PTY)
  • Miami (MIA) – San José (SJO)
  • Miami (MIA) – San Salvador (SAL)
  • New York (JFK) – Liberia (LIR)
  • New York (JFK) – San José (SJO)
  • Phoenix (PHX) – San José (SJO)

Delta Air Lines

  • Atlanta (ATL) – Belize City (BZE)
  • Atlanta (ATL) – Liberia (LIR)
  • Atlanta (ATL) – Panama City (PTY)
  • Atlanta (ATL) – San José (SJO)
  • Atlanta (ATL) – San Pedro Sula (SAP)
  • Atlanta (ATL) – San Salvador (SAL)
  • Los Angeles (LAX) – Liberia (LIR)
  • Los Angeles (LAX) – San José (SJO)
  • Los Angeles (LAX) – San Salvador (SAL)
  • Minneapolis (MSP) – Belize City (BZE)
  • Minneapolis (MSP) – Liberia (LIR)
  • New York (JFK) – Panama City (PTY)

JetBlue

  • Boston (BOS) – Liberia (LIR) *
  • Fort Lauderdale (FLL) – San José (SJO)
  • Los Angeles (LAX) – Liberia (LIR) *
  • Los Angeles (LAX) – San José (SJO)
  • Miami (MIA) – San José (SJO)
  • New York (JFK) – Guatemala City (GUA)
  • New York (JFK) – Liberia (LIR) *
  • New York (JFK) – San José (SJO)
  • Orlando (MCO) – San José (SJO)

* Mint service available

United Airlines

  • Chicago (ORD) – Belize City (BZE)
  • Chicago (ORD) – Liberia (LIR)
  • Chicago (ORD) – San José (SJO)
  • Denver (DEN) – Belize City (BZE)
  • Denver (DEN) – Liberia (LIR)
  • Denver (DEN) – San José (SJO)
  • Houston (IAH) – Belize City (BZE)
  • Houston (IAH) – Coxen Hole (RTB)
  • Houston (IAH) – Liberia (LIR)
  • Houston (IAH) – Managua (MGA)
  • Houston (IAH) – Panama City (PTY)
  • Houston (IAH) – San José (SJO)
  • Houston (IAH) – San Pedro Sula (SAP)
  • Houston (IAH) – San Salvador (SAL)
  • Houston (IAH) – Tegucigalpa (TGU)
  • Los Angeles (LAX) – Belize City (BZE)
  • Los Angeles (LAX) – Liberia (LIR)
  • Los Angeles (LAX) – San José (SJO)
  • Los Angeles (LAX) – San Pedro Sula (SAP)
  • Los Angeles (LAX) – San Salvador (SAL)
  • Newark (EWR) – Belize City (BZE)
  • Newark (EWR) – Liberia (LIR)
  • Newark (EWR) – San José (SJO)
  • Newark (EWR) – San Pedro Sula (SAP)
  • Newark (EWR) – San Salvador (SAL)
  • San Francisco (SFO) – Liberia (LIR)
  • San Francisco (SFO) – San José (SJO)
  • Washington, D.C. (IAD) – San Salvador (SAL)

And here’s a look at foreign carriers’ nonstop routes between the U.S. and Central America:

Avianca

  • Houston (IAH) – San Salvador (SAL)
  • Los Angeles (LAX) – Guatemala City (GUA)
  • Los Angeles (LAX) – San José (SJO)
  • Los Angeles (LAX) – San Salvador (SAL)
  • Miami (MIA) – San José (SJO)
  • Miami (MIA) – San Pedro Sula (SAP)
  • Miami (MIA) – San Salvador (SAL)
  • New York (JFK) – San José (SJO)
  • New York (JFK) – San Salvador (SAL)
  • Ontario (ONT) – San Salvador (SAL)
  • Orlando (MCO) – San Salvador (SAL)
  • San Francisco (SFO) – San Salvador (SAL)
  • Washington, D.C. (IAD) – Guatemala City (GUA)
  • Washington, D.C. (IAD) – San Salvador (SAL)

Copa Airlines

  • Boston (BOS) – Panama City (PTY)
  • Chicago (ORD) – Panama City (PTY)
  • Denver (DEN) – Panama City (PTY)
  • Fort Lauderdale (FLL) – Panama City (PTY)
  • Las Vegas (LAS) – Panama City (PTY)
  • Los Angeles (LAX) – Panama City (PTY)
  • Miami (MIA) – Panama City (PTY)
  • New York (JFK) – Panama City (PTY)
  • Orlando (MCO) – Panama City (PTY)
  • San Francisco (SFO) – Panama City (PTY)
  • Tampa (TPA) – Panama City (PTY)
  • Washington, D.C. (IAD) – Panama City (PTY)

Bottom Line: All major U.S. airlines, as well as Avianca and Copa Airlines, offer nonstop service to Central America. The best lie-flat options are found on JetBlue and Copa Airlines, but convenient nonstop flights may end up being the deciding factor.

Best Programs for Booking Flights to Central America

Emirates Skywards

JetBlue Mint A321
JetBlue Mint. Image Credit: Stephen Au

You may be wondering, “What in the world is Emirates doing in a guide to flying to Central America with points?”

Well, we’re here to inform you that redeeming Emirates miles is the best way to book JetBlue Mint using points.

Thanks to a close partnership between the 2 airlines, there’s finally an alternative to booking JetBlue Mint using points apart from redeeming JetBlue TrueBlue points at a poor, fixed value or using the Chase travel portal to redeem Ultimate Rewards points at a fixed value.

Here’s the award chart for booking JetBlue flights with Emirates Skywards:

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Additionally, any JetBlue Mint ticket in the “I” fare class can be booked using the award chart above.

Here are some great example JetBlue redemptions you can make:

  • Boston (BOS) – Liberia (LIR) one-way in JetBlue Mint for 52,000 Emirates miles + ~$10 in taxes and fees
  • Los Angeles (LAX) – Liberia (LIR) one-way in JetBlue Mint for 52,000 Emirates miles + ~$10 in taxes and fees
  • New York (JFK) – Liberia (LIR) one-way in JetBlue Mint for 52,000 Emirates miles + ~$10 in taxes and fees

These flights can exceed $1,500 in price, opening up the possibility to get around 3 cents per point in value!

Here’s how to book JetBlue Mint tickets with Emirates miles:

  1. Visit Emirates’ website.
  2. Log in to your Emirates account.
  3. In the search box on the homepage, click the button that says Advanced search: multi-city, promo codes, partner airlines.
  4. Select Book Classic Rewards Flight near the top of the screen.
  5. Just under that, click Search partner flights only.
  6. Choose your trip type (Round-trip or One-way)
  7. Enter the flight, date, and cabin class.
  8. Select the number of travelers.
  9. Click Search.
  10. Book any of the flights you see in the results using Emirates miles and a credit card for taxes and fees.

Earning Emirates Skywards Miles

Emirates Skywards is a Chase transfer partner, American Express transfer partner, Citi ThankYou transfer partner, Capital One transfer partner, Brex transfer partner, and Marriott transfer partner.

Amex, Chase, Citi, Capital One and Brex transfer to Emirates almost instantly at a 1:1 ratio.

Marriott Bonvoy transfers to Emirates at a 3:1 ratio, taking around 3 business days. If you transfer 60,000 Marriott Bonvoy points to Emirates, you’ll receive a bonus of 5,000 Emirates Skywards miles.

Recommended Chase Cards

GREAT STARTER CARD
Chase Sapphire Preferred® 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 fantastic travel card with a great welcome offer, good benefits, and perks for a moderate annual fee.

Learn More(at Chase's secure site)
A fantastic travel card with a great welcome offer, good benefits, and perks for a moderate annual fee.
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℠.
60,000 points
$1,200
$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)
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
Rewards Center

Chase Ultimate Rewards

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)
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
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
Rewards Center

Chase Ultimate Rewards

Bottom Line: The most comfortable way to fly to Central America is in JetBlue Mint, one of the best business class products from a U.S. carrier. You can redeem Emirates miles, which are easy to earn, for this experience, though the only available routes currently are to Costa Rica’s beach hotspot, Liberia (LIR).

Cathay Pacific Asia Miles

American Airlines recliner first class
American Airlines recliner business/first class. Image Credit: American Airlines

American Airlines is another major operator of nonstop flights to Central America.

With nearly 20 nonstop flights, you’re bound to find a flight suitable for you, whether you live in one of the cities from which AA flies nonstop or one of the many other cities American connects with its hubs across the country.

Cathay Pacific’s Asia Miles program offers great redemption prices on American’s longer flights, while British Airways Executive Club (discussed in the next section) has the best prices for shorter flights.

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Here are some great American Airlines redemptions you can make using Asia Miles:

  • New York (JFK) – Liberia (LIR) one-way in American Airlines business class for 30,000 Asia Miles + ~$6 in taxes and fees
  • New York (JFK) – San José (SJO) one-way in American Airlines business class for 30,000 Asia Miles + ~$6 in taxes and fees
  • Phoenix (PHX) – San José (SJO) one-way in American Airlines business class for 30,000 Asia Miles + ~$6 in taxes and fees

Unfortunately, Asia Miles requires you to submit an award request form or call the customer service phone number in order to book.

Given this extra step, here’s what we recommend you to do:

  1. Do not use American Airlines’ website to find availability. Instead, use a partner website like British Airways or Qantas to search.
  2. After finding American Airlines availability, give Asia Miles a call at 866-892-2598.
  3. Provide the Asia Miles customer service specialist with the details and finish making the reservation.

Earning Cathay Pacific Asia Miles

Cathay Pacific Asia Miles are easy to earn.

It maintains partnerships with American Express Membership Rewards, Citi ThankYou Rewards, Capital One Miles, Brex Rewards, and Marriott Bonvoy.

Amex transfers at a 1:1 ratio in a few hours, Citi and Brex both transfer at a 1:1 ratio within 1 business day, and Capital One transfers at a 1:1 ratio within 2 business days.

Marriott Bonvoy transfers at a 3:1 ratio with a 5,000-mile bonus when you transfer 60,000 Marriott Bonvoy points. Transfers to Asia Miles process in 5 business days.

Recommended American Express Cards

BEST LOUNGE ACCESS
The Platinum Card® from American ExpressTerms Apply / Rates & Fees
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

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

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 eligible 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
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 eligible purchases on your new Card in your first 6 months of Card Membership. Apply and select your preferred metal Card design: classic Platinum, 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.
  • The American Express Global Lounge Collection® can provide an escape at the airport. With complimentary access to more than 1,400 airport lounges across 140 countries and counting, you have more airport lounge options than any other credit card issuer on the market. As of 03/2023.
  • $155 Walmart+ Credit: Save on eligible delivery fees, shipping, and more with a Walmart+ membership. Use your Platinum Card® to pay for a monthly Walmart+ membership and get up to $12.95 plus applicable taxes back on one membership (excluding Plus Ups) each month.
  • $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.
  • $189 CLEAR® Plus Credit: CLEAR® Plus helps to get you to your gate faster at 50+ airports nationwide and get up to $189 back per calendar year on your Membership (subject to auto-renewal) when you use your Card. CLEARLanes are available at 100+ airports, stadiums, and entertainment venues.
  • 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 year period for TSA PreCheck® application fee for a 5-year plan only (through a TSA PreCheck® official enrollment provider), 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.
  • 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
Rewards Center

American Express Membership Rewards

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

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 AmexTravel.com
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
Rewards Center

American Express Membership Rewards

British Airways Executive Club

American Eagle First Class Meal Time
American Airlines recliner business/first class. Image Credit: American Airlines

With the British Airways Executive Club, it’s best to compare the merits of this program to those of Asia Miles.

In this case, partner American Airlines is going to be the major airline we examine.

Cathay Pacific Asia Miles offers attractive mileage prices compared to British Airways Executive Club on flights longer than 2,000 miles. But, on the other hand, British Airways Executive Club offers phenomenal award prices on flights up to 2,000 miles in flight distance.

Here’s the award chart for partner-operated flights (including American Airlines) booked with Asia Miles and British Airways Avios:

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As you can see in the chart above, British Airways costs 8,000 Avios less than Asia Miles for American Airlines business class flights up to 2,000 miles in flight distance, while Asia Miles costs 8,750 miles less than British Airways for American Airlines business class flights longer than 2,000 miles in flight distance.

Additionally, flights can be booked 100% online and it’s easy to earn British Airways Avios.

Here are some great example routes you can book using British Airways Avios:

  • Austin (AUS) – Liberia (LIR) one-way in American Airlines business class for 22,000 British Airways Avios + ~$6 in taxes and fees
  • Chicago (ORD) – Guatemala City (GUA) one-way in American Airlines business class for 22,000 British Airways Avios + ~$6 in taxes and fees
  • Dallas (DFW) – Belize City (BZE) one-way in American Airlines business class for 22,000 British Airways Avios + ~$6 in taxes and fees
  • Dallas (DFW) – Guatemala City (GUA) one-way in American Airlines business class for 22,000 British Airways Avios + ~$6 in taxes and fees
  • Dallas (DFW) – Liberia (LIR) one-way in American Airlines business class for 22,000 British Airways Avios + ~$6 in taxes and fees
  • Dallas (DFW) – San José (SJO) one-way in American Airlines business class for 22,000 British Airways Avios + ~$6 in taxes and fees
  • Dallas (DFW) – San Pedro Sula (SAP) one-way in American Airlines business class for 22,000 British Airways Avios + ~$6 in taxes and fees
  • Dallas (DFW) – San Salvador (SAL) one-way in American Airlines business class for 22,000 British Airways Avios + ~$6 in taxes and fees

Follow these steps to book your American Airlines ticket using British Airways Avios online:

  1. Visit British Airways’ website.
  2. Log into your British Airways Executive Account by clicking Log in in the top-right corner and entering your account details.
  3. After logging in, hover over the Book button in the top banner, and click Book a flight with Avios under the Flights sub-menu.
  4. Enter your travel information and click Get flights.
  5. Book the flight you wish using Avios and a credit card for taxes and fees.

Earning British Airways Avios

British Airways Executive Club has transfer partnerships with Chase Ultimate Rewards, Amex Membership Rewards, Capital One Miles, and Marriott Bonvoy.

Chase and Amex transfer to British Airways at a 1:1 ratio almost instantly, while Capital One transfers to British Airways at a 1:1 ratio almost instantly.

Marriott Bonvoy transfers to British Airways at a 3:1 ratio with a 5,000-mile bonus if you transfer 60,000 Marriott Bonvoy points.

Additionally, you can also earn Avios with the British Airways Visa Signature® Card!

Recommended Capital One Cards

LIMITED TIME OFFER
Capital One Venture Rewards Credit CardTerms Apply / Rates & Fees
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.

Get 2x miles plus some of the most flexible redemptions offered by a travel credit card!

Learn More(at Capital One's secure site)
Get 2x miles plus some of the most flexible redemptions offered by a travel credit card!
Enjoy $250 to use on Capital One Travel in your first cardholder year, plus earn 75,000 bonus miles once you spend $4,000 on purchases within the first 3 months from account opening - that’s equal to $1,000 in travel.
$250 Capital One Travel Credit + 75,000 miles
$1,600
$95
19.99% - 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 Credit (670-850)

The Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card is one of the most popular rewards cards on the market. It’s perfect for anyone in search of a great welcome offer, high rewards rates, and flexible redemption options.

Frequent travelers with excellent credit may benefit from this credit card that offers a lot of bells and whistles. And it offers easy-to-understand rewards earning and redemption.

Pros
  • 5x miles per $1 on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel
  • 2x miles per $1 on all other purchases
  • Global Entry or TSA PreCheck application fee credit
Cons
  • Enjoy $250 to use on Capital One Travel in your first cardholder year, plus earn 75,000 bonus miles once you spend $4,000 on purchases within the first 3 months from account opening – that’s equal to $1,000 in travel
  • Earn unlimited 2X miles on every purchase, every day
  • Earn 5X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel, where you’ll get Capital One’s best prices on thousands of trip options
  • Miles won’t expire for the life of the account and there’s no limit to how many you can earn
  • Receive up to a $100 credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck®
  • Use your miles to get reimbursed for any travel purchase—or redeem by booking a trip through Capital One Travel
  • Enrich every hotel stay from the Lifestyle Collection with a suite of cardholder benefits, like a $50 experience credit, room upgrades, and more
  • Transfer your miles to your choice of 15+ travel loyalty programs
Financial Snapshot
  • APR: 19.99% - 29.99% (Variable)
  • Foreign Transaction Fees: None
Rewards Center

Capital One Miles

Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit CardTerms Apply / Rates & Fees
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 Capital One Venture X card is an excellent option for travelers looking for an all-in-one premium credit card.

Learn More(at Capital One's secure site)
The Capital One Venture X card is an excellent option for travelers looking for an all-in-one premium credit card.
Earn 75,000 bonus miles when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening, equal to $750 in travel.
75,000 miles
$1,350
$395
19.99% - 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.
Excellent (740-840)

The Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card is the premium Capital One travel rewards card on the block.

Points and miles fans will be surprised to see that the Capital One Venture X card packs quite the punch when it comes to bookings made through Capital One, all while offering the lowest annual fee among premium credit cards.

Depending on your travel goals and preferences, the Capital One Venture X card could very well end up being your go-to card in your wallet.

 

Pros
  • 10x miles per $1 on hotels and rental cars purchased through Capital One Travel
  • 5x miles per $1 on flights purchased through Capital One Travel
  • 2x miles per $1 on all other purchases
Cons
  • $395 annual fee (rates & fees)
  • Does not offer bonus categories for flights or hotel purchases made directly with the airline or hotel group, the preferred booking method for those looking to earn elite status
  • Earn 75,000 bonus miles when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening, equal to $750 in travel
  • Receive a $300 annual credit for bookings through Capital One Travel, where you'll get Capital One's best prices on thousands of trip options
  • Get 10,000 bonus miles (equal to $100 towards travel) every year, starting on your first anniversary
  • Earn unlimited 10X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel and 5X miles on flights booked through Capital One Travel
  • Earn unlimited 2X miles on all other purchases
  • Unlimited complimentary access for you and two guests to 1,300+ lounges, including Capital One Lounges and the Partner Lounge Network
  • Use your Venture X miles to easily cover travel expenses, including flights, hotels, rental cars and more—you can even transfer your miles to your choice of 15+ travel loyalty programs
  • Elevate every hotel stay from the Premier or Lifestyle Collections with a suite of cardholder benefits, like an experience credit, room upgrades, and more
  • Receive up to a $100 credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck®
Financial Snapshot
  • APR: 19.99% - 29.99% (Variable)
  • Foreign Transaction Fees: None
Rewards Center

Capital One Miles

 

Delta SkyMiles

Delta Airbus A220 First Class Cabin
Delta Airbus A220 First Class. Image Credit: Greg Stone

Delta SkyMiles is a polarizing loyalty program. Associated with an airline with extremely high customer satisfaction, it’s somewhat unintuitive to think that its mileage prices aren’t all that attractive, especially for long-haul, premium cabin travel.

Still, for regional flights in first or business class, it’s possible to get solid value overall. More importantly, you’re almost always guaranteed a “floor” value with your miles, meaning they will be worth at least 1 cent apiece in redemption value.

Booking Delta flights to Central America is best done with Delta SkyMiles. It’s not unheard of to book economy flights for 10,000 miles in each direction, though you’ll generally redeem around 30,000 to 50,000 miles in each direction for a first class flight.

Unfortunately, it’s impossible to tell how much you’ll pay for a flight until you actually search due to Delta SkyMiles’ dynamic award pricing system.

Nonetheless, if you maintain a high degree of flexibility, you should be able to get some good deals on nonstop first or business class flights to Central America.

Additionally, since Delta SkyMiles members have the best access to award availability, you have the option to redeem more miles for a flight that works better with your schedule, while partner programs like Air France/KLM Flying Blue wouldn’t have that option.

Here are some great example redemptions you can make:

  • Atlanta (ATL) – Panama City (PTY) one-way in Delta first class from 32,000 SkyMiles + ~$6 in taxes and fees
  • Atlanta (ATL) – San José (SJO) one-way in Delta first class from 43,000 SkyMiles + ~$6 in taxes and fees
  • Atlanta (ATL) – San Pedro Sula (SAP) one-way in Delta first class from 17,000 SkyMiles + ~$6 in taxes and fees
  • Atlanta (ATL) – San Salvador (SAL) one-way in Delta first class from 31,000 SkyMiles + ~$6 in taxes and fees
  • Los Angeles (LAX) – Liberia (LIR) one-way in Delta first class from 29,000 SkyMiles + ~$6 in taxes and fees
  • Los Angeles (LAX) – San José (SJO) one-way in Delta first class from 34,000 SkyMiles + ~$6 in taxes and fees
  • Los Angeles (LAX) – San Salvador (SAL) one-way in Delta first class from 27,000 SkyMiles + ~$6 in taxes and fees
  • New York (JFK) – Panama City (PTY) one-way in Delta first class from 20,000 SkyMiles + ~$6 in taxes and fees

If you’re ready to book your Delta flight, follow these steps:

  1. Go to Delta’s website.
  2. In the top ribbon, fill in the search box. Search for your flights.
  3. Find suitable flight options and book your ticket using SkyMiles and a credit card for taxes and fees.

Hot Tip: Delta SkyMiles is very much a “what you see is what you get” program. Enhance what you see by searching using the award calendar.

Earning Delta SkyMiles

Delta SkyMiles are best earned through transfers from American Express or Marriott Bonvoy.

Amex Membership Rewards points transfer at a 1:1 ratio almost instantly, while Marriott Bonvoy points transfer within 1 business day at a 3:1 ratio.

Also, Amex issues several Delta SkyMiles co-branded credit cards that also come with perks like priority boarding, free checked bags, and more.

There are many Delta credit cards available which we cover in our in-depth guide.

Air France/KLM Flying Blue

Delta Airbus A220 First Class Cabin from Rear
Delta First Class. Image Credit: Greg Stone

In certain situations, it makes more sense to book Delta flights using Flying Blue miles instead of Delta’s own SkyMiles.

When we’re discussing flights to Central America, Delta’s Saver-level award tickets are also bookable with Flying Blue miles.

Flying Blue miles are generally easier to earn than Delta SkyMiles, but Flying Blue members can only access a small chunk of award availability, making it a bit more challenging to book award flights on Delta metal.

Delta SkyMiles charges lots of miles on select nonstop routes, even in the Saver award category. Get around this by redeeming Flying Blue miles on some of these great example routes:

  • Atlanta (ATL) – Belize City (BZE) one-way in Delta first class for 38,000 Flying Blue miles + ~$6 in taxes and fees (Delta SkyMiles charges at least 54,000 miles for this ticket)
  • Atlanta (ATL) – Liberia (LIR) one-way in Delta first class for 43,000 Flying Blue miles + ~$6 in taxes and fees (Delta SkyMiles charges at least 56,000 miles for this ticket)
  • Minneapolis (MSP) – Belize City (BZE) one-way in Delta first class for 43,000 Flying Blue miles + ~$6 in taxes and fees (Delta SkyMiles charges at least 62,000 miles for this ticket)
  • Minneapolis (MSP) – Liberia (LIR) one-way in Delta first class for 43,000 Flying Blue miles + ~$6 in taxes and fees (Delta SkyMiles charges at least 54,000 miles for this ticket)

Here’s how to book Delta tickets using Flying Blue miles:

  1. Find Saver-level availability on Delta’s website.
  2. Reproduce that search on Air France/KLM Flying Blue’s website.
  3. After finding a Delta flight, redeem your Flying Blue miles and pay for the taxes and fees with a credit card.

Earning Air France/KLM Flying Blue Miles

Air France/KLM Flying Blue has transfer partnerships with all the major transferable currencies, including American Express Membership Rewards, Chase Ultimate Rewards, Citi ThankYou Rewards, Capital One Miles, Brex Rewards, and Marriott Bonvoy.

Amex, Chase, Citi, Capital One, and Brex have the best transfer ratios of 1:1 — they also transfer instantly.

Marriott has a 3:1 ratio transfer ratio, and transfers take 3 business days. If you transfer 60,000 Marriott Bonvoy points to Flying Blue, you’ll get an extra bonus of 5,000 miles.

Flying Blue also has a co-branded credit card issued by Bank of America that earns miles directly.

Recommended Citi Cards

Citi Premier® 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 information regarding the Citi Premier card has expired, and the card is no longer open to applicants.

*The information regarding the Citi Premier card has expired, and the card is no longer open to applicants.
Earn 60,000 bonus ThankYou® Points after you spend $4,000 in purchases within the first 3 months of account opening. Plus, for a limited time, earn a total of 10 ThankYou® Points per $1 spent on hotel, car rentals, and attractions (excluding air travel) booked on the Citi Travel℠ portal through June 30, 2024.
60,000 points
$960
$95
21.24% - 29.24% 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 Citi Premier® Card is an excellent option for anyone looking for an all-around travel rewards credit card. The card helps you earn points fast with great 3x bonus categories such as restaurants, supermarkets, gas stations, airfare, and hotels. Plus, it offers access to airline and hotel transfer partners, doesn’t charge foreign transaction fees, and has a reasonable annual fee!

Pros
  • 3x points at restaurants, supermarkets, gas stations, airfare, and hotel purchases
  • Access to Citi transfer partners
  • Annual hotel credit
Cons
    • $95 annual fee
  • Earn 60,000 bonus ThankYou® Points after you spend $4,000 in purchases within the first 3 months of account opening. Plus, for a limited time, earn a total of 10 ThankYou® Points per $1 spent on hotel, car rentals, and attractions (excluding air travel) booked on the Citi Travel℠ portal through June 30, 2024.
  • Earn 3 Points per $1 spent at Gas Stations, Air Travel and Other Hotels
  • Earn 3 Points per $1 spent at Restaurants and Supermarkets
  • Earn 1 Point per $1 spent on all other purchases
  • Annual Hotel Savings Benefit
  • 60,000 ThankYou® Points are redeemable for $600 in gift cards redeemable for $600 in gift cards or travel rewards at thankyou.com
  • No expiration and no limit to the amount of points you can earn with this card
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees on purchases
Financial Snapshot
  • APR: 21.24% - 29.24% Variable
  • Foreign Transaction Fees: None
Rewards Center

Citi ThankYou Rewards

Air Canada Aeroplan

United first class
United first class. Image Credit: United Airlines

Air Canada Aeroplan is our go-to frequent flyer program for Star Alliance flights between the U.S. and Central America because it has plenty of transfer partners, some of the best redemption rates for economy and business class, and even permits one-way stopovers for an extra 5,000 points!

Not only can you book United flights with Aeroplan points, but you can also book Avianca and Copa Airlines flights.

Here’s the award chart for partner-operated flights:

SCROLL FOR MORE

Here are some great example redemptions you can make:

  • Chicago (ORD) – San José (SJO) – Guatemala City (GUA) one-way in United and Avianca economy class with a stopover in San Jose for 17,500 Aeroplan points + ~$38 in taxes and fees
  • Denver (DEN) – Panama City (PTY) one-way in Copa Airlines business class for 25,000 Aeroplan points + ~$38 in taxes and fees
  • Houston (IAH) – Liberia (LIR) one-way in United business class for 20,000 Aeroplan points + ~$38 in taxes and fees
  • Los Angeles (LAX) – Guatemala City (GUA) – San José (SJO) one-way in Avianca business class with a stopover in Guatemala City for 30,000 Aeroplan points + ~$38 in taxes and fees
  • San Francisco (SFO) – Panama City (PTY) one-way in Copa Airlines business class for 35,000 Aeroplan points + ~$38 in taxes and fees
  • Washington, D.C. (IAD) – San Salvador (SAL) – Panama City (PTY) one-way in Avianca business class and Copa Airlines business class with a stopover in San Salvador for 30,000 Aeroplan points + ~$38 in taxes and fees

Follow these steps to book your award ticket:

  1. Find award availability on each segment on United.com (look for Saver availability).
  2. Go to the Aeroplan homepage.
  3. Click Sign In in the top-right corner and log into your Aeroplan account.
  4. Re-enter the flight details from step 1 to reconfirm that you’re seeing the same flights.
  5. Use your Aeroplan points and a credit card for taxes and fees.
    • If adding a stopover, you will need to call Aeroplan at 800-361-5373 to book your ticket.

Earning Air Canada Aeroplan Points

Earning lots of Aeroplan points is easier than ever.

Thanks to lucrative transfer partnerships with American Express Membership Rewards, Chase Ultimate Rewards, Capital One Miles, and Marriott Bonvoy, you’ll have many ways to rack up points.

Amex, Capital One, and Chase maintain 1:1 transfer ratios. Marriott Bonvoy is 3:1 with a 5,000 points bonus after transferring 60,000 Marriott Bonvoy points to Aeroplan.

Amex, Chase, and Capital One transfer instantly while Marriott Bonvoy takes 5 business days to transfer to Aeroplan.

United MileagePlus

United First Class Seat with Laptop
United first class. Image Credit: United Airlines

The last frequent flyer program we’ll be looking at is United MileagePlus. United’s website is fantastic because it’s capable of showing virtually all of the available options you can book within the Star Alliance.

However, we generally recommend only using United to perform award searches; rarely do we recommend you to book your ticket using United miles.

But if you have a bunch of United miles or need to access award availability beyond partner-level Saver awards, the only way to book United flights with points is through United MileagePlus.

Sure, you’ll end up paying more miles for your flight, but you’ll get to adhere to the schedule/availability that fits your needs best.

In any case, you’ll avoid fuel surcharges, which is great news. Here’s how much award flights cost (remember, you’ll very rarely find premium cabin awards at that starting price):

SCROLL FOR MORE

Here are some great example flights you can book using United miles:

  • Chicago (ORD) – Liberia (LIR) one-way in United business class from 32,200 United miles + ~$22 in taxes and fees
  • Houston (IAH) – Coxen Hole (RTB) one-way in United business class from 32,600 United miles + ~$22 in taxes and fees
  • Houston (IAH) – Panama City (PTY) one-way in United business class from 32,600 United miles + ~$7 in taxes and fees
  • Los Angeles (LAX) – Belize City (BZE) one-way in United business class from 50,500 United miles + ~$22 in taxes and fees
  • Newark (EWR) – Belize City (BZE) one-way in United business class from 40,400 United miles + ~$22 in taxes and fees
  • Newark (EWR) – Panama City (PTY) one-way in United business class from 30,000 United miles + ~$7 in taxes and fees
  • San Francisco (SFO) – Liberia (LIR) one-way in United business class from 30,000 United miles + ~$22 in taxes and fees

Follow these steps to book your United flight online with United MileagePlus:

  1. Go to United.com.
  2. On the homepage, fill out the search box and remember to check off the box that says Book with miles.
  3. Perform the search, find a suitable award flight, and complete the reservation by redeeming United miles and paying for taxes and fees.

Earning United MileagePlus Miles

Earning United miles is easy. Currently, Chase Ultimate Rewards and Marriott Bonvoy are United MileagePlus transfer partners.

Chase transfers at a 1:1 ratio almost instantly, while Marriott Bonvoy transfers at a 3:1.1 ratio in 3 business days. Also, if you transfer 60,000 Marriott Bonvoy points to United, you’ll get a bonus of 5,500 miles.

You can also earn United miles through Chase’s co-branded credit cards.

Recommended United Cards

We explore the large number of United credit cards available in our detailed guide.

Final Thoughts

There are many ways to fly between the U.S. and Central America using points and miles.

We’ve focused on major U.S. airlines in this guide, though Avianca and Copa Airlines also operate nonstop flights.

And with a dizzying network of routes, it can feel overwhelming to try to get the best deal with your points.

If you’re looking for a lie-flat business class opportunity, redeem Emirates miles on JetBlue Mint or Aeroplan points on Copa Airlines’ lie-flat business class (on Boeing 737 MAX planes only).

But know that regardless of how you plan on getting there, you have plenty of options for getting to Central America with minimal cash outlay.

The information regarding the Citi Premier® Card has expired and the card is no longer open to applicants.
The information regarding the Citi Rewards+® Card was independently collected by Upgraded Points and not provided nor reviewed by the issuer.
The information regarding the Citi Double Cash® Card was independently collected by Upgraded Points and not provided nor reviewed by the issuer.
The information regarding the Citi Custom Cash® Card was independently collected by Upgraded Points and not provided nor reviewed by the issuer.
The information regarding the United Club℠ Business Card was independently collected by Upgraded Points and not provided nor reviewed by the issuer.

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.
For rates and fees of the Delta SkyMiles® Gold American Express Card, click here.
For rates and fees of the Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card, click here.
For rates and fees of Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card, click here.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the best airline to fly to Central America?

The best airline to fly in business class to Central America is JetBlue, offering its Mint product on select routes. Alternatively, all of the major U.S. airlines have recliner seats available in business or first class.

Are there any direct flights to Central America?

Yes, there are plenty of flights to Central America. Most nonstop flights are bound for Costa Rica, Panama, and Belize. However, there are nonstop flights to many major airports, including San Salvador in El Salvador, Managua in Nicaragua, San Pedro Sula in Honduras, and Guatemala City in Guatemala.

How long is a flight to Central America?

Nonstop flights to Central America can be anywhere from 3 to 6 hours, depending on the route you’re taking. If you fly from Florida, Texas, or New York, your travel time will be shorter than if you flew from California or elsewhere on the West Coast.

What are the best ways to fly to Central America with points and miles?

The best way to fly lie-flat business class to Central America using points and miles is booking JetBlue Mint using Emirates Skywards miles.

Otherwise, longer flights on American Airlines in business class can be booked with Asia Miles, while shorter flights on American Airlines in business class can be booked with British Airways Avios.

To book Delta flights, we recommend using Delta SkyMiles or Air France/KLM Flying Blue miles.

Finally, United miles or Aeroplan miles can be used to book United business class.

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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.

The Ultimate Lounge Playbook!

Discover the exact steps we use to get into 1,400+ airport lounges worldwide, for free (even if you’re flying economy!).

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