Old Jul 10, 13, 2:55 am
Join Date: May 2004
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Programs: AA, Delta, UA & thanks to FTers for my PC Gold!
Posts: 7,658
Why an Award Planning Forum will do FT good?

Originally Posted by tcook052 View Post
IMHO the best way to rationalize access to information is to consolidate and have fewer forums, not constantly be creating more forums which only helps to divide & diffuse.
I do agree creating new fora isn't the ultimate solution for every demand or problem on FT. Just like I think our current Budget Forum should be sufficient to address the need to discuss LCCs. Not to mention there's not that many threads to complain about Spirit/Easyjet/Ryannair on FT to start with.

The reality is things have evolved now that we've seen an influx of FTers, both new and old, who need assistance with their award redemption and planning after earning thousands (or millions) of miles/points. Not to mention award redemption has outgrown from a single FFP to alliance partners. The way I see it is, currently, there's not a proper forum on FT to discuss awards with complicated routings and/or multiple redemption, especially across alliances and/or hotel chains. That's also one of the reasons why an increasing number of threads pops up in MilesBuzz! everyday, asking for help to use their miles/points. Afterall, those thread have no where to go on FT.

If FT is able to educate FTers how to earn their countless miles/points in every possible way, why not step up to teach people how to take the full advantage of what they've earned? Back when the U.S. mint deal was alive, FT was able to help folks earns millions of miles/points. Now the FF world has grown much bigger than mint earning (thanks to FT & countless bloggers ), why shouldn't FT live up to its reputation as "The FT University" by having a forum devoted to award planning & redemption?

FT is filled with knowledgeable savvy FTers that do know how to get to destinations on awards. Better yet, FTers get educated and help each other for free. Although I've never had that many miles and haven't flown that many airlines, I simply can't tell you how much I'd learned from reading the advices given in those award assistance threads about creative routing and possible combinations of programs. Just like the old saying, "you learn something new everyday on FT!"

FT deserves an opportunity to have an educational corner so FTers can do and be their best: planning awards using FF knowledge. Imagine the joy when every award mission is accomplished with a new Award Planning Forum!

Originally Posted by kipper View Post
With an award planning forum, wouldn't a lot of people end up posting questions there that should go in the appropriate airline forum instead? Will it confuse people? If I have a question about redeeming my miles for a DL award, do I ask the questions in the DL forum or the award planning forum?
If your example of Delta redemption is all on a single carrier, Delta, of course Delta Forum will be where to ask for help. I had thought about the possible confusion and addressed such concern for misplaced threads in my post:
Originally Posted by lin821 View Post
With a dedicated forum, folks who need help would know where exactly to ask for assistance. For those who are willing to help out, they would certainly frequent such forum. When a request turned out to be a single or simple FFP redemption, MOD could easily relocate such thread to the airline forum, thus no worries for cross-posting.
Let's face it. Newbies or not, there will always be people who post in the "less-fitting" forum. I lost count of how many misplaced threads I've read in MilesBuzz! Forum when they should have been in the airline fora. Those simple award redemption threads are always easy to tell and moved by MODs promptly afterwards.

The Award Planning Forum I envision is to not overlap with airline/hotel fora. Furthermore, it should cut down confusion and the need to cross-post. For those of us who know FT well, we do know where to post such threads. For those who are still learning about FT, an "educational" redirect from either MOD or helpful fellow FTers should do the trick. So I wouldn't be too worried about single FFP redemption threads steal base in the new award planning forum. They would end up where they belong eventually.

Let's see the example in Chase UR Forum. When Chase UR Forum was created and introduced, it was made clear not a forum for all Chase cards. As we all know it by now, depending on the nature of the cards, Chase CC discussion can be seen in either the airline forum, the Credit Card Forum, or Chase UR Forum. The new Chase UR Forum doesn't create more confusion.

Just like Chase UR Forum is not a catchall forum for every Chase card, my proposing Award Planning Forum isn't for every award redemption either. With a new forum, it's easy to give instruction and direction to folks. A clear and straight-forward forum description should guide the users well, explaining a simple FFP or hotel award redemption belongs to their designated airline/hotel forum. As a matter of fact, I can only see more good coming from an Award Planning Forum for FT in a long run.

Originally Posted by MSPeconomist View Post
It could be called something like "award planning across programs" or "award planning when transfers of miles/points are involved" for emphasis...
ps. I am not protective at all of how to name my proposed new forum for award redemption, if TB decides to work toward such reorganization, either "Award Planning" or something with more wording to specify what I have envisioned so far up thread, I am good! I actually see this proposed new forum as both educational and challenging in FFP and loyal program knowledge among FTers. How much more fun can FT be, right?

Last edited by lin821; Jul 10, 13 at 3:14 am Reason: clarification
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