Yesterday, the big talking point for American Airlines flyers was undoubtedly the news that American has completely reinvented how elite status is earned in the AAdvantage program. There were, however, a couple of other pieces of news that were put out at the same time that cover the current elite qualification period and the start of the next, and those pieces of news are covered here.
Today looks like it's a day for surprises. I didn't expect Marriott to announce the huge Bonvoy devaluation that we've seen, while the cataclysmic changes that I was expecting American Airlines to make to its awards charts never materialized. Instead, what American Airlines announced today was a wholesale change to how AAdvantage elite status is earned.
A few weeks back I picked up 150,000 AAdvantage miles at a nicely reduced rate and by doing so, I immediately broke a cardinal rule of the miles & points world because I had no real plan for what I was going to do with the miles. I had a few ideas, but the truth is that chance to buy miles at 1.36 cents each was too big a temptation and I was happy to risk an AAdvantage devaluation before I got a chance to burn the miles in return for such a good deal.
With Victoria now joining New South Wales in saying said that it plans to open up to vaccinated visitors from 1 November with no quarantine requirements, and with the Australian government under increasing pressure to open up its borders to international travelers, Qantas is pushing forward with getting its global route network restored and it has now confirmed the international routes that it will start/restart in the coming months.
Earlier this year, Cathay Pacific eliminated two types of awards and brought its Miles Plus Cash option online allowing customers to pay for any available seat using a mix of Asia Miles and cash. Now, a little over 6 months later, Cathay Pacific has made a further change to its loyalty program by announcing that the ability to waitlist for a standard award is being removed with immediate effect.
The title of this post is a question to which I don't have an answer but it's a question that has come to light as a result of the recent changes that Qatar Airways made to how its Business Class fares are structured and how many Avios British Airways now says that Qatar Airways Business Class fares will accrue. If you're flying in Qatar Airways Business Class and crediting your flights to the Executive Club, this is something to look out for.
We've already seen evidence of Qantas chomping at the bit to get flyers traveling internationally again when it brought forward the resumption of two key routes last week, and now the airline has shown more evidence of wanting to get people back in the air by announcing that it has released more award seats than ever before for travel in 2022.
Alitalia, as an airline, may be officially dead, but its spirit is very much alive within the newest Italian flag carrier ITA Airways. Over the weekend, news emerged that ITA is offering an elite status match to just about anyone and on the face of things, this looks like a pretty pointless status match (I'll explain why in a moment). Having thought this offer though a bit more, however, I'm starting to think that it may have its uses.
Hyatt has just announced a new promotion in conjunction with American Airlines in which all members of American's frequent flyer program can earn a bonus of 1,000 AAdvantage miles per qualifying stay at over 190 participating Hyatt hotels in cities across the U.S. this winter.
The title of this post probably should read "...and breathe" because ever since we heard that Qatar Airways was refreshing its Business Class fare structure for the thousandth time, I've been holding my breath and waiting for British Airways to destroy what is undoubtedly one of the easiest routes to earning valuable elite status. Fortunately, my fears appear to have been unfounded.