News

Written by Ravindra Bhagwanani on . Posted in Archives

Sta-Bra

Decisively, there are things in life that don’t go together. Such as the Star Alliance and Brazil. The alliance has managed over its not so long history to recruit successively two member airlines in the country and both failed. After the early failure of Varig, the same destiny was reserved to Avianca Brasil. And as with Varig (or any other failures in other markets), the alliance has remained completely silent in regard to what might happen to any outstanding points of Amigo members. Such lack of commitment towards members will only accelerate the decrease of importance of the alliances: While alliances offer some benefits in good weather, customers would like to be able to count on them during bad weather, too and that definitely extends to the question of honouring miles of a failed member airline. Whether the rising Brazilian star Azul Airlines, which has already close bilateral relationships with Star partner TAP Air Portugal and United, will be tempted to join the alliance in front of such history remains to be seen. Colombian airline Avianca and its LifeMiles program are not affected by these developments.

Written by Ravindra Bhagwanani on . Posted in Archives

G3

While not too much good news has reached us from Brazil as of lately between Avianca Brasil and a weird President, not everything is actually bad: Gol’s program Smiles definitely helps to save the reputation by its latest initiative. Already featuring one of the most diverse and interesting global partner networks of any program, including airlines such as Delta, Air Canada, Air France KLM, TAP Air Portugal, Emirates, Qatar Airways or Korean Air, it has now not only added South African as another full accrual and redemption partner, but perhaps even more interestingly several smaller African carriers as redemption partners only. They include Ethiopian Airlines, TAAG (Angola) and Royal Air Maroc. Those carriers have all in common that they serve São Paolo, making Smiles hence clearly the best option among Brazilian programs to reach the African continent from Brazil, but potentially also from elsewhere. Spanish airline Air Europa is another new redemption-only partner.

Written by Ravindra Bhagwanani on . Posted in Archives

DY-Avi

The question to ask is actually very simple: Do you believe that Norwegian will still be around next spring? If your answer is yes AND if you reside in Scandinavia, the UK or Spain, you should look no further than Avis for your upcoming car rental requirements. Each of up to three rentals booked by October 31 over the Norwegian website and realised by January 31 enters into a prize draw to win 50,000 CashPoints in its Norwegian Reward program. Obviously, the chances to win are not tremendous, but the potential prize is nevertheless worth it. 50,000 CashPoints have a direct cash value of 50,000 Norwegian Krones (ca. 5,500 USD), good for future bookings on Norwegian. And even if you don’t win, the standard accrual rate of 10% of the rental value credited as CashPoints represents one of the most interesting accrual values you can achieve with Avis.

Written by Ravindra Bhagwanani on . Posted in Archives

Acc-Eur

Le Club Accorhotel is running two independent promotions until September 27, which are definitely worth considering: First, 500, 2,500 and 3,000 bonus points are earned for the first, second and third stay at an Accor property reserved by September 27 and completed by January 19. Secondly, Europcar rentals earn double points for the same reservation period, with a completion date of rentals by December 15. The exception are though rentals of at least eight days in selected European countries as well as in Australia and New Zealand, which earn a bonus of 5,000 points (for a total credit of 6,000 points). 11,000 Accor points have a cash value of 220 EUR when redeemed at Accor properties.

Written by Ravindra Bhagwanani on . Posted in Archives

IA

The concept of Frequent Flyer Programs continues its global triumph and now also lands for the first time at Iraqi Airways. Whether the program will really become relevant for the frequent traveller community might be questionable, but it can be assumed that it will soon at least change its name: While Delta, alongside with American and United, is still focused on fighting the three big Gulf carriers at a political level, it should rather have looked at the real threat, the much smaller Iraqi Airways: The latter has elected to call its FFP SkyMiles, basically not caring that Delta registered that name as trademark a long time ago. As the US helped to put the new law system in place in Iraq, this might not last for too long though – provided Delta becomes aware of it at all in first place.