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Old Nov 6, 12, 11:34 am   #1
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: YOW
Programs: Aeroplan*E
Posts: 128
Angry Does SAA actually recognize *A Gold?

So I have a flight YOW-IAD-JNB this afternoon. I have *A Gold, and the ticket was booked months ago, seat chosen to boot. 49K. Window.

I check in with United this afternoon for my connector and find out my seat has been bumped back to 62F- 13 rows back and a middle seat.

United counter says they can't do anything, because it's SAA's flight. I call SAA's USA offices and the agent says she can't do anything because I've already checked in. Her "helpful" advice was to get to Dulles earlier, which is obviously highly unlikely given that I don't have wings of my own.

Does SAA recognize *A Gold at all, or just Voyager members? Do I have any hope whatsoever at this point?
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Old Nov 6, 12, 9:29 pm   #2
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: NRT / HND
Posts: 2,379
What does *G have to do with seat selection on partner airlines?

Your *G benefits are listed here:
http://www.staralliance.com/en/benef...silver-status/

No where in that list is guarantee of selected seats or priority seat selection. I don't know any airline that guarantees your pre-selected seat will be the one you actually get a boarding pass for. Many reasons justify seat changes of pax. Voyager members also would have no additional pull in this situation. Just hope for the best at IAD and be polite without acting entitled.
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Old Nov 6, 12, 9:42 pm   #3
 
Join Date: Aug 2000
Location: Exile
Posts: 13,364
SAA are among the better partners at recognising *G status. They usually block the seats next to *G passengers when possible. I can't even remember the last time I had someone sitting next to me on an SAA flight.
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Old Nov 7, 12, 3:42 am   #4
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Johannesburg
Programs: SAA Voyager Plat, Diners Club Prive, Amex Plat, Avis Presidents Club
Posts: 313
Agreed! SAA at least give the same priority to *G as they do their own golds. *G uses the same lounge as SAA members do too.

Try fly as a *G (as SAA plat) through Frankfurt or Munich, and use the lounges. Lounges are from the 1970's, overcrowded, and dingy. The food (think cheap snack) traveled along with Charles Lindbergh on his maiden trans Atlantic flight.

Whereas Lufthansa Hons sit in a wonderful lounge all to themselves. Dining rooms, plenty of space....

Also try phone for an award seat with LH and redeem miles, no problem! Try use star miles then there are no seats. Singapore never heard of one person ever getting a F seat on A380 (been trying for years).

With SAA X and I class are the same for both * network and their own voyager members.
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Old Nov 7, 12, 10:09 pm   #5
 
Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: PER
Programs: UA 1K, AA EXP, VA Platinum, AS MVPG, TK Elite+, IC Plat Ambassador, HH Diamond, SPG Gold
Posts: 650
Yeah I flew PER-JNB return and they made sure there was no one sitting next to me for the whole flight which was great.

They were a little confused in LVI when I asked them to make sure my baggage was tagged as priority through to PER via JNB, but when he finally came back 5 minutes later he had a business class boarding pass in hand so that was nice ;-)
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Old Nov 27, 12, 12:15 pm   #6
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: Namibia
Programs: LH Senator
Posts: 138
hmmm NOT my experience

I've never had ANY consideration on SA for being an LH Senator, *Gold. In Fact, I frequently even have to mail in my BPs as SAA never credited the flights properly. Entrance into the lounge at JNB is it for me.
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Old Nov 28, 12, 7:09 am   #7
 
Join Date: Aug 2000
Location: Exile
Posts: 13,364
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tanzguy View Post
Entrance into the lounge at JNB is it for me.
Which outstations deny you access to lounges as a *G?
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Old Dec 10, 12, 11:51 am   #8
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: LJU
Programs: LH SEN, FB Silver
Posts: 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by jozdemir
Yeah I flew PER-JNB return and they made sure there was no one sitting next to me for the whole flight which was great.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tanzguy View Post
I've never had ANY consideration on SA for being an LH Senator, *Gold. In Fact, I frequently even have to mail in my BPs as SAA never credited the flights properly. Entrance into the lounge at JNB is it for me.
From my experience they don't recognize *G on the MUC/FRA-JNB route. Flown with them some dozen times. Two anecdotal experiences below:

One time we were 2 SENs on Y tickets for 2400 (out of FRA) and we were simply seated in middle seats at the back. LH*G was on our boarding passes, and upgrades were being given at the gate - understandably, to Voyager members. At least they could have reseated us to those exit seats freed by those, or on that 72/73D

Another time I did have a seat available next to me until another passenger had seen this and wanted to sit next to me (?) because of better comfort. I explained to the f/a the concept of *G and empty seats next to them ... and got the purser come to my seat asking me for the boarding pass for the extra seat that is owned by the airline anyway. I politely suggested that the airline can require the other passenger to stay at its assigned seat, unless *G or Voyager Gold/Plat.
Since all this was after a mechanical delay of 2 hrs at JNB, the whole Y cabin didn't earn any dinner for that night.

As a positive note, the purser made an announcement upon landing that went like this: "Landing a plane that is 70 metres long is not an easy task, and our pilots have done it with excellence!". Made us smile and made that morning a little brighter.

(That other passenger was a female and I realize I may have missed the opportunity of my life, but I enjoyed that extra space regardless )
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Old Dec 10, 12, 12:12 pm   #9
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Johannesburg
Programs: SAA Voyager Plat, Diners Club Prive, Amex Plat, Avis Presidents Club
Posts: 313
I always find it difficult to be sympathetic to LH members, simply because of the double standards. LH hons members in FRA/MUC have amazing lounges, yet they shove SAA Plat members in the worst imaginable lounge.

Yet in JNB, SAA accommodates hons members in the same lounge we use as plats. double standard.
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