FlyerTalk Forums - View Single Post - Forbes Story on Skymiles Redemption on Premium Class Award travel
Old Aug 29, 19, 12:56 pm
  #13  
josephstern
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Upper Sternistan
Posts: 7,833
Originally Posted by ijgordon View Post
Agreed that FT focuses on the premium class awards, and the truth is that those were BY FAR the best way to get value out of your miles in the past. Of course there was always debate about the "real" value you were achieving, because most of us would never consider paying the $8k r/t in cash for a 100k US-Europe ticket that calculates at $0.08/mile in value. Or one of the most egregious examples would be JFK-HKG on Cathay in First Class using AA miles -- I think it was maybe 155k give or take on a $25k r/t (!) ticket (though you could do a 1-stop for like $16k). 16 cents per mile!

I think also back then (before the GFC) it was harder to find more "affordable" premium fares outside of the summer/holiday fare sales to Europe, and certainly any time to Asia. But now it's not hard to find NYC-Europe for ~$2500-3000 r/t at nearly any time if you plan right, and even at 160k (award sales aside), that's only 1.5-1.9c of value per mile. Better than many redemptions on DL today, but arguably still a lot worse than in the past.
Two things have happened to the landscape of great redemptions on biz class over-water tickets:

1 - The price to buy these went down. You can frequently find decent lie-flat seats from the West Coast to Asia for $2500 RT, for example. East Coast to Europe can even be less.

2 - The redemption costs went way up.

So the "good deal" gap has narrowed considerably.
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