How to Book Qatar Airways with American miles - Thrifty Traveler

Advertiser Disclosure

book qatar airways with american miles

How to Book Qatar Airways with American miles

This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. The content on this page is accurate as of the posting date; however, some of the offers mentioned may have expired. For more information check out our Advertising Disclosure.

[UPDATE] As of 10/25/18 you can now book Qatar Airways flights online with American AAdvantage miles.


If you're going to redeem your hard earned miles, you might as well fly Qatar Airways, the best airline in the world for 2017. Not only does Qatar Airways have incredible business and first-class products, but it's easy to book Qatar Airways with American miles. The best part is there are minimal taxes and fees. This is one my favorite uses of points and miles.


Award Chart 

American Airlines has one award chart for all partner redemptions. Select your departure region to determine the number of points required. Routes from the United States to Doha, Qatar start at 40k AAdvantage miles in economy or 70k miles in business class.

Routes from Doha to London or Paris (flying the A380) in business or first class cost 42.5k & 62.5k AAdvantage miles, respectively. Qatar Airways has a massive network so it's easy to get anywhere in the world on points.


How to Search 

While you are using American miles to book, the award space on Qatar Airways is not searchable through the AAdvantage website. Award space can be found by searching for award tickets through partner British Airways. Award availability will vary by route, and I'd recommend booking as early as possible. Qatar Airways redemptions have incredibly low taxes & fees of $25-$50 per segment.

Thrifty Tip: Search for space segment by segment. If you are planning on going from Philadelphia to Bangkok, first search PHL – DOH and then DOH – BKK. This way you can build one itinerary when you call in to book.


Screen Shot 2017 10 25 at 7.35.17 AM
Business class award space from Philadelphia to Doha, Qatar


Screen Shot 2017 10 25 at 7.36.04 AM
First class award space from Doha to Bangkok


How to Book

Once you've found Qatar Airways award availability, via British Airways, all you need to do is call American Airlines at 800-882-8880 to book. Once you get an agent on the line, feed them the flights and they will book it with your AAdvantage miles. There should not be any phone booking fees. My average booking has taken me around 15 minutes via phone.

It's easy to build an entire trip by piecing together different segments. This winter, Mrs. TT and I are flying from Philadelphia to Doha in business class on the new A350, and then flying first class on the A380 from Doha to Bangkok, all for 120,000 American miles each + $53 in taxes & fees.


Favorite Redemptions


  • US to Doha (Business Class)

Flying from the US to Doha in business class is a solid redemption at 70k miles. The best use of miles will be flying the high-tech Airbus A350 from Boston, Miami, NYC, and Philadelphia. Other US cities fly the 777 product, which isn't bad, but it doesn't have WiFi and has older seats. Qatar's best business class products are the 787 Dreamliner, A350, and A380.

Flying economy isn't bad for 40k miles, but let's be honest, it's definitely worth the extra 30k miles to upgrade to business class. Flying business class also gives you access to the massive business class lounge in Doha.


Qatar Airways A350 Business Class e1508903795536
Qatar Airways A350 Business Class


Qatar A350 Business Class
Qatar Airways A350 Business Class


book qatar airways with american miles
Economy on the Qatar A350


  • Doha to Europe (First Class)

Flying First Class is my favorite redemption on Qatar Airways. Flying the A380 (check routes) from Doha to Bangkok, London, Paris, or Sydney are my top choices. You get to experience the onboard A380 bar in both business and first class, but the amenities in first class can't be beat. Especially access to the Al-Safwa First Class lounge in Doha. A first class award ticket is 62.5k miles from Doha to Europe.


Qatar A380 Business Class Bar e1497977968913
Qatar A380 Bar


  • Doha to Asia (First Class)

Flying First class to Bangkok or Guangzhou can be booked for only 50k miles. There is also excellent award availability for several people.


Qatar First Class
Qatar First Class


Now let's talk lounges. The Al-Safwa First Class lounge in Doha is my favorite lounge in the world. It's a quiet and impressive space. There is plenty of seating as well as great dining options. If you have longer than a 8 hour connection, you can even request a private room with a bathroom and shower at no extra charge.


Qatar First Class Lounge Al Safwa
First and Business class check-in Doha


Qatar First Class Lounge Al Safwa 2
Al Safwa First Lounge front desk


E8B3D174 356D 4E34 A04A 18B6FD7C97F6
Al Safwa First Class lounge


Qatar First Class Lounge Al Safwa Bar
Al Safwa bar


316E80AB 1BF9 49D4 B2D5 A636E66DF12C
Al Safwa First Class Champagne (Veuve Clicquot La Grande Dame)


Qatar First Class Lounge Al Safwa 3
Private rooms for layovers longer than 8 hours


Qatar First Class Lounge Al Safwa 4
First Class Lounge private room bathroom


How to earn AA Miles 

There are many ways to earn American Airlines AAdvantage miles. The easiest of which is to take advantage of the current sign up bonuses on the co-branded American Airlines credit cards. Both the personal and business versions of the co-branded Citi American Airlines AAdvantage cards are currently offering an increased sign-up bonus.

For a limited time, you will earn 60,000 American Airlines AAdvantage miles after spending $3,000 in the first 3 months of card membership, on the personal card and 70,000 miles after spending $4,000 in the first 3 months of card membership on the CitiBusiness card. These card offers can be found on our Top Credit Cards page.


Bottom Line 

Booking Qatar Airways flights with American Airlines AAdvantage miles is incredibly cheap and easy. I will admit that I use my AA miles more often on partner airlines than I do flying American itself. The quality and service of Qatar Airways is hard to beat. If you would like to apply for a credit card, visit our Top Credit Cards page.


Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser’s responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.

39 Responses

  • When i am searching on BA’s site… i can’t get away from BA flights. i am not seeing anything for QATAR on there at all.

    Is there any tricks to this?


  • Hi I am wanting to travel from IAH to DOH/Nirobi in February in Qatar business. Is it possible to route back through Europe into JFK or something? I want to book through JAL but if i come back into IAH I go over 20k by a couple of hundred miles. Any thoughts or suggestions? I have SPG to transfer to JAL. I found Emirates space for the dates and could come back into JFK to stay under the mileage but the fees were almost as much as just buying a ticket. Any thoughts or ideas appreciated, this is my first time doing this and I am a little overwhelmed. Like the person above I am having trouble finding the award availability.

    • Qatar business award space is not available daily. I’d search IAH – DOH first and DOH-NBO second and then piece them together when you call to book and feed them the flights numbers.

      The fees are incredibly high on JAL award tickets now. We prefer to use Alaska miles to book Emirates.

  • How are you finding tickets on BA Awards with such low taxes? I’m looking for NYC to Male and it is 95k miles RT in economy + $550 in taxes and fees. No better if I search just NYC to Doha either.

  • It did not work in my case. Find the QR flights, give them to the AA representative, expend waiting in the phone more than 30 minutes. The response was, those flights are only available for purchase. In the AA website was also not possible to book any of those flights on QR.
    I am a two million miller AA frequent flyer. I wanted to go from Miami to Melbourne to the Australian Open in January thru Doha in Business, but there is no availability with miles. Very disappointed.

    • Hey Art – You no longer have to call in to book. You would search for MIA-DOH and then DOH-MEL. You have to search and book them separately.

    • Did you get any tickets on Qatar. I am having the same trouble you had. The agents won’t book it on the phone and I can’t book it online.

  • I did, but nothing is coming on AA even though in QR the flights are there. Only MIA- DOH in coach only. The rest is not even an option. How long should I wait to see if they open those flights with miles?

  • I want to fly syd to FCO via Doha 1st class with AA but Qatar not releasing any flights.
    Any tips
    I want to fly July 2019 and return August
    2 first class tickets

    • Be flexible with dates. They can be stingy with first class award availability. Business class is a great experience as well if you are open to that.

  • Business class 80000 form BOS – DOH -_AKL? Can I make a stopover in DOH and how do I book this?

    • Those are separate sectors so you could have to book BOS-DOH & DOH-AKL separately. I would recommend working in a middle east stopover in Amman, Muscat, or Beirut. For example, BOS-DOH-AMM, AMM-DOH-AKL.

      The intra-middle east flights book as First (Z) fares which will get you into Qatar’s first class lounge (Al-Safwa). The stopover is essentially free. Mrs. TT and I do this every chance we get and we highly recommend it.

  • Sorry, I still don’t get how to look up for the intra-middle east flights book as First (Z) fares which will get you into Qatar’s first class lounge (Al-Safwa). The stopover is essentially free. Mrs. TT and I do this every chance we get and we highly recommend it.

    • You simply search the other Middle East destination as your final destination. So let’s say you want to fly from Chicago to Doha in Qsuites, and then on to Beirut, Lebanon. Your search would be ORD-BEY. If the award space lines up, it will book you into Business class for ORD-DOH, and First (Z) for DOH-BEY

  • I am trying to book business class on Qatar from ORD to DOH. When I check the AA website it will show the nonstop flight as being available but when I click to follow through and book it, it will say it is not available. I called AA and the agent told me that he saw the flight was in the system but he is not able to book it on the phone. He said I had to book it online only. Does this mean that Qatar basically doesn’t allow AA members to book many of their flights?

    • Sounds like you ran into phantom space – essentially space that showed up online but wasn’t actually bookable. Availability changes over time. Keep checking other dates and US departure cities. Nonstops have become harder to find in the last 6-9 months.

  • I don’t think it is phantom space. I think Qatar has stopped allowing an award travel on their flights. I have called American Airlines agents multiple times and have gotten many different answers. One finally told me that they think Qatar has just recently made it very much impossible to book award travel on their flights. I will say that I have looked for economy award tickets on many different flights from the USA to DOH and I get the same error message when I try to book. The AA website will show availability but when you try to book either a business class or economy ticket it gives an error message. Something has certainly changed because just 2 years ago I had no issue booking two business class tickets out of ORD to DOH. I am not sure why Qatar claims to be a ONEWORLD partner if they aren’t going to allow any award travel to be booked with AA miles.

  • As part of a round-the-world trip, I flew QSuites from SYD-DOH-BCN. The total flight time was 22 hours, plus a 9 hour layover in DOH. However, every minute was pure bliss. I could have easily spent twice as much time traveling, especially with the luxurious shower rooms and excellent dining in the DOH lounge. The benefit of business class is that you arrive comfortable and rested. In cattle class, on any airline, you arrive exhausted, cramped, and disheveled. I would like to fly the QSuites next to BKK. Unfortunately, the AA award chart specifies that to fly from USA to BKK in biz for 70K, you must take a Transpacific route. This usually means flights on Cathay Pacific or Japan Airlines, which are also nice options. AA just confirmed that if I want to fly to BKK on Qatar in biz, then I need to cough up 70K miles to DOH, plus another 40K to BKK, for a total of 110K. That’s not a horrible redemption, but I think I would take the Transpac option for just 70K. I have a lot of miles, but I am very stingy with them!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.