September 2015 Airline Update
At TRVLVIP we focus on maximizing your airline reward program earning and redemption opportunities to save you time and money. The more you know, the bigger your advantage and the greater the travel Luxury you’ll enjoy for your Loyalty! We have some great airline updates for you this month!
First of all, we are seeing better-than-ever global airfare deals across many airlines this summer and, with lower fuel prices and increased competition, we expect the deals to keep flowing. If you are flexible and can make a quick buying decision, you will benefit most!
The Bureau of Labor Statistics’ July 2015 Consumer Price Index report on August 19 showed that airfares dropped by almost 6% year-over-year in July, which was the largest one-month decline in 20 years.
Follow TRVLVIP’s Top Ten Airline Tips to get in on the great deals while maximizing your loyalty program rewards and get a move on planning your next wonderful vacation!
Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan
We added many great Alaska Airlines updates along with some great new Perks and Tips this month!
A reminder, on October 17, all US Airways flights will become American Airlines flights, which means over 60 additional destinations, 3,000 more flights and a lot more earning and redemption opportunities for Alaska Mileage Plan members! And, as of August 15, Alaska’s Board Room members now enjoy access to all 54 Admirals Club locations worldwide as an expansion of the already robust frequent flyer reciprocity arrangement with American Airlines in place since 1999!
Here are a few of the current Alaska Airlines Perk and Tip highlights:
- ALASKA AIRLINES AUTUMN AWARD SALE – Travel with Alaska this Autumn for great award ticket prices as low as 5,000 miles through mid-December if booked by September 13, 2015!
- ALASKA MILES – ENJOY UP TO 40% MORE – Miles are on sale with a bonus until October 6, 2015!
- ALASKAN SEEKING HAWAIIAN – Successful Alaskan seeking adventurous Hawaiian – must love to travel! Hawaiian Residents enjoy $50 off any future flight from the Hawaiian Islands simply for joining the Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan before October 31, 2015.
- ALASKA AIRLINES TAG YOUR BAG OFFER – Just tag your bag at home before October 20, 2015, and earn 1,000 bonus miles!
- ALASKA’S DOUBLE BONUS MILES OFFERS – Alaska’s double mile offers are updated frequently so don’t miss out! You must register before you can earn.
- ALASKA AIRLINES RECENTLY FORMED A PARTNERSHIP WITH CHINA’S HAINAN AIRLINES – Celebrate with double miles on Hainan flights. Register before September 30 and fly by October 31, 2015!
- FLY WITH EMIRATES AND EARN TRIPLE ALASKA MILEAGE PLAN MILES ON FIRST CLASS FLIGHTS OR DOUBLE MILES ON BUSINESS AND ECONOMY FLIGHTS – Register before September 7 and fly by November 30, 2015!
These 5 Tips Set Alaska Airlines Apart From Their Competition and Should be Bookmarked:
- ALASKA AIRLINES CHANGE AND CANCEL TIP – Cancellations and changes incur no fee if made 60 days or more before travel!
- ALASKA SAME-DAY CHANGES ARE EASY ON THE WALLET – The most you will pay for a same-day flight change is $25!
- ALASKA AIRLINES PRICE GUARANTEE – After booking an Alaska Airlines flight, if you find a lower fare on alaskaair.com at ANY TIME, they’ll give you the difference as a credit!
- ADD A STOPOVER & SAVE BIG WITH ALASKA – Stopovers and Open-Jaws are an excellent way to stretch your Reward Miles!
- AMAZING PERK – ALASKA AIRLINES COMPANION PASS – The annual Alaska Airlines Companion Pass is one of the best perks of any travel reward credit card!
And remember, loyalty in the Mileage Plan really pays for MVP Gold and Gold 75 members who always have free cancellations and changes on paid and award travel!
Always visit TRVLVIP before renting a car to review the many great discounts and bonuses with Avis, Hertz and National.
American Airlines AAdvantage
We added some great American Airlines updates, Perks and Tips for you this month!
In August, American Airlines And Cuba Travel Services Announced New Charter Service Between Los Angeles And Havana to start later this year, providing travelers the only nonstop service connecting the West Coast to Cuba since travel restrictions were eased.
As a reminder, October 17 is the BIG day when US Airways will join Continental, TWA, PanAm and other once-dominant high-flyers at that great airline retirement home in the sky. This US Airways retirement party will add over 60 additional destinations to American Airlines and 3,000 more flights! And as a result of this merger, American Airlines is now the world’s largest airline by revenue.
Here are a few of the current American Airlines Perk and Tip highlights:
- AMERICAN AIRLINES AWARD DISCOUNTS – Have an American Airlines credit card? You may qualify for a discounted award with savings between 2,500 and 7,500 miles on American Airlines MileSAAver Awards booked before September 30, 2015!
- AMERICAN & STARWOOD’S 1K BONUS – Enjoy 1,000 bonus American AAdvantage miles on Starwood stays of two nights or more in North and Latin America through January 31, 2016.
- AMERICAN AIRLINES PREMIUM BONUS – Luxury Rewards for Loyal Travelers – Earn up to 12,000 bonus miles throughout 2015!
- AMERICAN AADVANTAGE POINT BOOST – Hey Big Spender, This One Is for You – Earn up to 3 Elite-Qualifying Points per mile when you purchase and fly on a First or Business Class ticket in 2015!
And bookmark this one from July – American Airlines Hold, Change & Cancel Policies. It’s comforting to know your options (all in one spot) if you ever need to change or cancel a flight!
Always visit TRVLVIP before renting a car to review the many great American and other discounts and bonuses with Avis, Hertz and National.
Delta Airlines SkyMiles
We added many great Delta Airlines updates along with some great new Perks and Tips this month!
In August, Delta and China Eastern finalized their expanded partnership, which included a $450 million investment by Delta to acquire a 3.55% stake in China Eastern, thereby providing an opportunity to build the number one alliance across the trans-Pacific.
Delta is so confident in its on-time rate that they are promising to pay up if American and United beat Delta’s on-time and completion rates for a year with travel credits ranging from $1,000 to $250,000 to businesses with a Delta contract. And that on-time confidence is great for all Delta customers!
As we mentioned last month, for travel on or after June 1, 2016, the number of miles needed for Delta award flights will be based on destination, demand and other dynamics and award miles needed to upgrade under the Mileage Upgrade Award program will also increase. A big increase in the miles required for award flights on several popular routes is expected. We suggest you consider using some of your miles to book a fabulous trip before June 1, 2016, when Delta awards will certainly be more expensive for long-haul flights.
Here are a few of the current Delta Perk and Tip highlights:
- DELTA & STARWOOD’S 1,000 MILE BONUS – Enjoy 1,000 bonus Delta SkyMiles on Starwood stays of two or more nights through January 31, 2016.
- DELTA LUXURY PLUS 10,000 BONUS MILES – Were you one of the lucky “targeted” few with the chance to earn 10,000 bonus SkyMiles?
- DELTA AND HERTZ – BEST PROMO YET – Earn 700-3,350 bonus SkyMiles and save up to 40% with Hertz for the rest of 2015!
- NATIONAL DISCOUNT & DELTA BONUS – Earn a discount with National Car Rental and 200 bonus SkyMiles for each rental day on top of 500 miles for each qualifying rental.
Remember the industry pairings between Delta and Starwood and Delta and Virgin Atlantic, which provide great reciprocal benefits! In August, Delta and Virgin announced two new routes – New York to Edinburgh and Salt Lake City to London, both to begin in May 2016.
United Airlines MileagePlus
We added some great United Airlines updates, Perks and Tips for you this month!
In August, United publicly renewed its commitment to stay true to its iconic tagline “Fly the Friendly Skies,” which was originally introduced in 1965 (and brought back in 2013).
As many of you know, United moved to a revenue-based earning structure for redeemable miles in 2015. Redeemable miles can be used for award flights, upgrades and partner goods and services that accept MileagePlus miles as payment. This earning adjustment significantly rewards those who purchase premium class seats, last-minute flights and other expensive tickets. Unfortunately, this change hurts the majority of United’s customer base – the leisure, main cabin flyer who diligently books early to save money, especially those without a high level of elite MileagePlus status. So it’s been a rocky road for many MileagePlus members in 2015. What’s your experience been?
It seems the perfect time to refocus efforts on the customer experience, schedules, increased destinations options and new partnerships to try to retain its current members and to win new loyal flyers. As we reported last month, United Continental Holdings (UAL) experienced its highest quarterly profit ever in Q2 2015, with net income of $1.2 billion which was up 51% from the same period last year.
According to Reuters, United plans to reconfigure its schedule in a way that mimics competitor carriers to improve scheduling performance. This follows two high-profile glitches this summer that led to widespread delays and cancellations. And United has improved its in-flight amenities and menu, introduced a much improved personalized website, and is refurbishing its whole fleet of 767s to include new seats, more overhead bin space, in-seat power, Panasonic satellite Wi-Fi and on-demand entertainment services.
Here are a few of the current United Perk and Tip highlights:
- UNITED CHILE & BRAZIL SAVINGS – Save 25% on economy awards between the US or Canada and Chile or Brazil! Book and fly before November 31, 2015!
- UNITED AND HERTZ OFFER A BIGGER BONUS – Save up to 40% and earn up to 1,250 miles plus Elite benefits! And until October 31, enjoy an extra 1,500 bonus miles.
- UNITED TARGETED FLY MORE BONUS – The more you fly, the more you earn in 2015 – up to 200,000 miles!
- UNITED PREMIER STATUS MATCH – Have Elite status with another airline? “Fly the Friendly Skies” in comfort and style sooner with the Premier Status Match Challenge – Register before September 30, 2015 to participate!
- STRETCH YOUR AIRLINE REWARD MILES WITH A STOPOVER OR OPEN-JAW – What is a “Stopover” and “Open-Jaw” anyway and how can they benefit me?
This is good Tip to bookmark from July– United Airlines Hold, Change & Cancel Policies. It’s comforting to know your options (all in one spot) if you ever need to change or cancel a flight!
And remember that United and Marriott (RewardsPlus) have paired up to provide great reciprocal benefits!
We hoped you enjoyed our monthly airline update! We’d love to have you follow us on Facebook and Twitter and to share TRVLVIP with friends and family who enjoy travel and desire more Luxury for their Loyalty!
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Happy Loyalty, Happy Travels!