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Old Jan 22, 11, 1:04 am   #1
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RR 2.0 Tips & Tricks

Figured out a tactic to squeeze a bit more out of RR 2.0? Post it here!

This won't likely become a very long thread, as RR 2.0 was designed to be painfully boring and relatively unexploitable. When did a bunch of dedicated FTers ever let that stop them?

From other threads, what we have so far are:
  • nsx: If you accumulate a lot of points and serve as the family travel agent, book flights for infrequent travelers with your points instead of your credit card. See original post for more details.
  • ftnoob: Increase the "all-in" value of your points by using them on the cheapest fares possible; consider refaring from dollars to points travel during fare sales. See original post for more details.
[I plan to come back later and flesh out the above summaries or at least link to the original posts.]

Last edited by ftnoob; May 23, 11 at 3:07 pm. Reason: Insert links to original posts; wording tweak
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Old Jan 22, 11, 1:37 am   #2
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Note: This is a short-term transition trick only.

Some people might find themselves in this situation:
  • a very low balance of RR credits;
  • having some flights planned before 01-Mar;
  • no reasonable way to get close to triggering another award by 28-Feb.
When that is the case, you might want to "convert" the credits for your upcoming flights into RR 2.0 points to avoid the risk of having them go to waste.

I know because that was me.

Something that might work for you is tapping our old friend, the award deferral technique. If you manage to avoid having flight credits post before 01-Mar, then request past credit after 28-Feb, you will have successfully converted old credits to new points, something that is not directly possible! You will still have the option to convert those points back to credits to top off the award sometime down the road when you have a clearer picture of whether it makes sense to do so.

Just remember this is more difficult than it was in the old days. SWA will try to figure out your RR # if you leave it out, and phoning to have the number deleted from an existing reservation no longer works. You need to use name and address variations to book your ticket. Booking without being logged in to MySouthwest may also help. What you hope to see is a confirmation with something that looks like an RR number, but that is not your actual number; that means the computer thinks you are a new customer.

I wasn't able to use this trick due to RR 2.0 being announced too close to my flight date, but perhaps someone will be able to use it.
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Old Jan 22, 11, 2:38 am   #3
 
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Maybe someone can help me here...is it best to have only 1 credit on 3/1, or are the more credits the better? Right now, I'm 2.75 credits from another award. I'll hit that in a day or two. I can probably bang out another 17 by the end of February, but I'm not sure if that's a good idea.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ftnoob View Post
Just remember this is more difficult than it was in the old days. SWA will try to figure out your RR # if you leave it out, and phoning to have the number deleted from an existing reservation no longer works. You need to use name and address variations to book your ticket. Booking without being logged in to MySouthwest may also help. What you hope to see is a confirmation with something that looks like an RR number, but that is not your actual number; that means the computer thinks you are a new customer.
You could always have the folks at the airport delete your RR #. Or, if you've registered your RR account with a full middle name for secure flight, just change that name to your middle initial or VV. The TSA likely won't notice or care. If you're an A-lister, it's probably best to have the airport delete your RR # because your A-list status is tied to the RR number. Without that, you have to remember to check in.
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Old Jan 22, 11, 7:26 am   #4
 
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I already have 6 or 7 SAs. I have a CC coming in the next few days that is 16 credits plus 500 gc. I'm going to wait to spend until 3-1 hoping to get 19,200 points instead of the RR credits. It would be optimal to have a bank of points to go along with my SAs. If it will work - and I know there has been some discussion already on this - it will give me more flexibility.

And I so agree with ftnoob - use 2.0 points only on the cheapest WGA fares (watch for sales). Using them on Anytime and BS fares will most likely be a points disaster.

Also, work to accumulate a large bank of points so you can book flights that you MIGHT or PROBABLY will take. If you have enough points banked this can be done easily. And they can be cancelled if need be without penalty. This is better than 1.0. Before one had to use TTF or actually make a new purchase. TTFs have a limited shelf life while the points do not.

Last edited by mile ho; Jan 22, 11 at 7:35 am.
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Old Jan 22, 11, 9:22 am   #5
 
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I'd throw in "maximize partners". With car rentals at 600 points/rental, that's the same as $100 in airfare as far as point accrual. Hotels are second best as they're also 600 points but you can generally get a car rental for a day for much less than a hotel room. If you can swing lots of spending towards the credit card, that's also a big deal because of CP attainment and/or significant push for A-list.
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Old Jan 24, 11, 7:49 pm   #6
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If there is a 30/60/90 type sale this year, consider trying to link together a bunch of the 30s into a segment run. Under RR1, it was almost never worth it unless you had expiring credits or were trying to renew A-List (saving all the EB $10 surcharges). But now with A+, anybody who would get 35-45 segments in a year through normal travel has to seriously consider it.

Do some research about the flight schedules in your region and understand which flights link well (without the same flight number) before there's a fare sale. My goal is to have a couple of 3-segment one-ways planned out to and from locations I'd like to visit in April/May and especially Oct/Nov, as based on my spending patterns I've figured out that an extra $250 invested into A+ would be a great ROI.
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Old Jan 24, 11, 8:49 pm   #7
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Similar to legacy programs, avoid redeeming for a top elite passenger who can earn points on paid tickets at double the normal rate. If you run out of others who need the freebies, then maybe you can consider redeeming for your own travel.

This tactic maximizes total points earned per total dollars spent.
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Old Jan 25, 11, 7:35 am   #8
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ElmhurstNick View Post
If there is a 30/60/90 type sale this year, consider trying to link together a bunch of the 30s into a segment run. Under RR1, it was almost never worth it unless you had expiring credits or were trying to renew A-List (saving all the EB $10 surcharges). But now with A+, anybody who would get 35-45 segments in a year through normal travel has to seriously consider it.
My strategy is to get A+ this year (I won't be grandfathered in). Thought about spending the 6K it would take in BS fares, but not for long. 50 segments would be much easier for me to achieve as I'll probably do 30 to 40 on my own (all WGA). So doing the segment runs makes sense. If I were close to LAX or LAS I'd be working over those 19.00 fares.

Think there was a 30/60/90 around Halloween last year? Have they traditionally done them at specific times of the year? Anyone remember?
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Old Jan 25, 11, 9:09 am   #9
 
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Good suggestions above, thanks.

IMO, there will be so many changes coming with RR 2.0 that it's hard to envision what tips/tricks might arise. It appears that the nature of the business leads airlines inevitably to come up with promos that can be gamed by people who are so inclined.

Why should WN be any different as it introduces a more complicated rewards program intended to better draw "elite" travelers? I have a feeling that there will be many offers of double and triple points (especially on specific routes/buckets), double TQPs, credit card bonuses, fast-tracks, Partnerpaloozas, partner offers, etc.

In that case, we will all have to follow the Mileage Run forum henceforth, and I agree with ElmhurstNick that "segment running" will likely become very important.
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Old Jan 25, 11, 9:23 am   #10
 
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One other thing that occurred to me is that if you have a Diners Club card, hang onto it.

The extremely generous SPG>WN transfer option quickly noted in this forum after the announcement of 2.0 is certainly IMO at risk of devaluation. Not sure I'd put all my eggs in that basket.

Diners may fly under the radar, especially since they aren't taking new applicants.
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Old Jan 25, 11, 9:34 am   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ftnoob View Post
  • ftnoob: Increase the "all-in" value of your points by using them on the cheapest fares possible; consider refaring from paid to award travel during fare sales.
This would not be a good strategy for me since I earn A-List, which I expect to earn based on flown segments and not RR2.0 credits. My best strategy will be to book more expensive WGA flights with credit and buy the cheap ones with cash so I can maximize segment credit towards A-List. I'd rather pay for 2 $60 WGA tickets with cash and use points on 1 $120 WGA ticket than the other way around since I'll get 2 vs. 1 flight credits towards A-List.
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Old Jan 25, 11, 10:42 am   #12
nsx
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Beckles View Post
This would not be a good strategy for me since I earn A-List, which I expect to earn based on flown segments and not RR2.0 credits. My best strategy will be to book more expensive WGA flights with credit and buy the cheap ones with cash so I can maximize segment credit towards A-List. I'd rather pay for 2 $60 WGA tickets with cash and use points on 1 $120 WGA ticket than the other way around since I'll get 2 vs. 1 flight credits towards A-List.
Even better would be to use the points for WGA fares for other family members rather than for yourself. That way you maximize your paid flight count.
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Old Jan 25, 11, 1:41 pm   #13
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ftnoob View Post
Just remember this is more difficult than it was in the old days. SWA will try to figure out your RR # if you leave it out, and phoning to have the number deleted from an existing reservation no longer works. You need to use name and address variations to book your ticket. Booking without being logged in to MySouthwest may also help. What you hope to see is a confirmation with something that looks like an RR number, but that is not your actual number; that means the computer thinks you are a new customer.

I wasn't able to use this trick due to RR 2.0 being announced too close to my flight date, but perhaps someone will be able to use it.
Is there anyway to remove a RR number from an existing reservation? I only have 0.5 credits and would much rather have my three Feb. flights posts as "points" instead. Could an agent at the airport remove my RR number?
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Old Jan 25, 11, 4:24 pm   #14
 
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since WN backdates credit postings when you submit credit for a missing flight, I'm reasonably sure that anyone who adds a missing flight will get an old credit, not points. their system will likely just not be setup to assign any points at all for any flight segment flown before 3/1/11


Right now we see RR credits show up about 4 hours after our flight. any prediction on how fast we'll see points? My thought is that since their website is down consistently for bookings, I don't think anyone will see points the first week or March. They'll show up/post eventually, but it'll be a painful process by some of WN's IT vendors.
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Old Jan 26, 11, 5:15 pm   #15
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The rules clearly state points will be given:
Quote:
Credits earned prior to the transition date (either by flying Southwest Airlines flights, or through qualifying purchases with Rapid Rewards Partners) but not deposited into the account at the time of transition will be posted to the account on or after the transition date as Rapid Rewards Points...
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