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I've been saving up Delta Skymiles for years with my upcoming safari to Africa in mind (Zambia, Aug./Sept. 2018!). Now that it's almost time to book my flights, I'm starting to worry if using reward miles is such a good idea. Have any of you experienced pitfalls because you used reward tickets for a long, international trip? Pitfalls meaning issues with getting seats you want, rebooking problems after missed connections, inconvenient schedules, etc. What I've noticed thus far I've noticed with Delta that I won't be able to book a Delta Comfort seat (slightly roomier economy seats) if I use my Skymiles, although I would hope an upgrade might be available closer to the actual flight. First class is not going to be an option, as it looks like I'd need about 1.3 million Skymiles to book two first class tickets that way. And I hear that first class upgrades never happen on Delta's ATL to JNB route--certainly not for someone with only Gold status (I'm inconsequential as far as Delta is concerned). Potential savings Using miles (I'm estimating around 550,000 total) would save me approximately $4,500 USD, assuming my dad and I flew from Salt Lake City to Atlanta to Johannesburg. So, it's obviously a big deal. But I don't want issues with flights to hamper our trip. Any thoughts? Am I just being an over-planning paranoid? ;-)
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