Old Apr 14, 20, 3:13 pm
FlyerTalk Forums Expert How-Tos and Guides
Last edit by: Gajan
URL to information: https://www.flyingblue.nl/en/news/coronavirus-updates

Update 16/4/20

At this stage measurements which have been taken are for status maintain only. We are well aware that customers can also be impacted by less chance for an upgrade and/or reduced opportunities to carry over XP to the next year. We are constantly monitoring the evolution of the situation and are adjusting our policies accordingly. Should there be additional measures to compensate those impacts too, we will let our Flying Blue members know as soon as possible.
Update 15/4/20

In challenging times like today, travelling has become more difficult due to reasons beyond your control. In these trying times, we want to remove any uncertainty you may have about your Flying Blue Elite level.

We have put the following actions in place:

- We will maintain all Flying Blue Elite members with a qualification period ending between March 2020 and February 2021 for another 12 months.
- We will prevent all Miles from expiring between now and the end of 2020 for all our Explorer members.
From the Q&A that will be shared later today:


2. Will I keep my current level in my next qualification period?
In case your qualification period ends between March 2020 and February 2021, you will keep your current level even if you don’t reach the XP objective. Some examples:

A Silver member with a qualification period ending in April 2020:
· If you have gained 120 XP, your counter will be offset by 100 XP to maintain Silver and you keep a surplus of 20 XP.
· If you have gained 65 XP, we will credit the missing 35 XP and then offset your counter with 100 XP to reset your XP counter to 0 and maintain your Silver level.

A Gold member with a qualification period ending in April 2020:
· If you have gained 220 XP, your counter will be offset by 180 XP to maintain Gold and you keep a surplus of 40 XP.
· If you have gained 120 XP, we will credit the missing 60 XP and then offset your counter with 180 XP to reset your XP counter to 0 and maintain your Gold level.

A Platinum member with a qualification period ending in April 2020:
· If you have gained 450 XP, your counter will be offset by 300 XP to maintain Platinum and you keep a surplus of 150 XP.
· If you have gained 250 XP, we will credit the missing 50 XP and then offset your counter with 300 XP to reset your XP counter to 0 and maintain your Platinum level.

3. When will I see this XP measure in my online account?
Not until the first day in your new qualification period will you see in your online account that your current level is maintained. In your activity overview, you’ll find either ‘XP offered by Flying Blue’ with the number of XP that are credited to reach the XP objective, or ‘Counter offset’ with the XP objective deducted from your counter. A new card will be sent to you before your current card expires. The validity date of your digital card will be updated at the end of your current qualification period.

4. I want to upgrade to a higher level. Will I also be compensated?
Our measures enable Elite members to maintain their current level. It is not applicable for members who wish to upgrade to a higher level.

5. Will I keep my current XP balance in my next qualification period?
We will automatically offset the number of XP needed to maintain or upgrade a level. Any surplus XP will remain on your account. Some examples:

A Silver member with a qualification period ending in April 2020:
· If you have gained 120 XP, your counter will be offset by 100 XP to maintain Silver and you keep a surplus of 20 XP.
· If you have gained 65 XP, we will credit the missing 35 XP and then offset your counter with 100 XP to reset your XP counter to 0 and maintain your Silver level.

A Gold member with a qualification period ending in April 2020:
· If you have gained 220 XP, your counter will be offset by 180 XP to maintain Gold and you keep a surplus of 40 XP.
· If you have gained 120 XP, we will credit the missing 60 XP and then offset your counter with 180 XP to reset your XP counter to 0 and maintain your Gold level.

A Platinum member with a qualification period ending in April 2020:
· If you have gained 450 XP, your counter will be offset by 300 XP to maintain Platinum and you keep a surplus of 150 XP.
· If you have gained 250 XP, we will credit the missing 50 XP and then offset your counter with 300 XP to reset your XP counter to 0 and maintain your Platinum level.

6. What will happen to my years counting towards Platinum for life?
If you keep your current level during your next qualification period based on our special measures that membership year will count towards the 10 consecutive years needed to qualify for Platinum for life. For example:

· You have been a Platinum member for 9 consecutive years, and your current qualification period will end on 31 December 2020. Because of our measures, you will be maintained and reach 10 consecutive years of Platinum. On 1 January 2021, your new qualificaiton period starts and on 1 April 2021, we will change your level to Platinum for life.
· You have been a Platinum member for 7 consecutive years, and your current qualification period will end on 31 December 2020. Because of our measures, you will be maintained. On 1 January 2021, your 8th consecutive year of Platinum will start.
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COVID-19: status extensions confirmed

Old Mar 18, 20, 7:05 am
  #46  
 
Join Date: Mar 2019
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Gajan: Hmm, that’s “great”. What a difference to Aeroflot, for example. Ok, I think I’ll adjust my loyalty to SkyTeam accordingly.
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Old Mar 18, 20, 9:38 am
  #47  
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No the reduction is only to support people to maintain status. This does not increase rollover XP so in case of vinnyc rollover will be 50 XP.
That is disappointing. In effect, FB are treating those who have flown AFKL a lot less well than those who have flown it less. It seems to me that the decent thing would be to treat all FB members equally rather than disadvantaging those who fly a lot and temporarily lower the level across the board for all purposes, whether it be maintaining, promotion the higher level or roll-over. That business of arbitrarily making allowances for some FB members but not others is hard to justify.
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Old Mar 18, 20, 11:31 am
  #48  
 
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I have a feeling that this was a solution that sort of went with "hey you, intern, come up with something we can implement easily and will shut them up for at least two weeks". The Aeroflot, or, by now, Finnair (6 month extension) solution would be nicer, but I guess there isn't anyone in FB/AF/KL who wants to try and make calculations on what is the best solution. I suppose it is no help to them that FB is not just a loyalty system of one airline, or at least the two airlines in the same group, but also of KQ and RO, who might want to push through their own views.
Meanwhile the likes of SU can just at the position of SU itself, and they also have more history to look at to say "hey, 90% of them retain status anyway, we can afford to give extra status to those 10%". The data I don't think is readily available with the fairly fresh new FB, they would have to run simulations.

Personally, I would think the better solution at this time, instead of playing with the requal criteria, would be to just freeze the calendar for the duration, and then move everyones qualification period up for however long the freeze lasted - if it's three months then three months, if the air travel crisis continues on, then 6 months, 9 months, as appropriate.
At least that way you'd have a chance to catch up. I don't know how many folks travel patterns are such that they get about the same amount of XP every month, so 25% reduction in criteria works for them just fine. For me - I have a somewhat irregular travel pattern. I take a good bit more flights in Q2 than Q1, between April and May I would have done easily 50-60 XP, add to that March, and I'm some 70-80 XP in the hole, maybe a bit less if some flights went to *A, but still a lot more than the 45XP reduction offered...
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Old Mar 18, 20, 3:15 pm
  #49  
 
Join Date: Sep 2014
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While I realize the airlines are fighting for survival, when times improve I would like to see some of my lost XP restored. I already have enough XP in the bank to requalify for 2021 but it's annoying to think of the 200+ XP I will be missing over the next 2 months....
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Old Mar 18, 20, 3:23 pm
  #50  
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Originally Posted by Fabo.sk View Post
Personally, I would think the better solution at this time, instead of playing with the requal criteria, would be to just freeze the calendar for the duration, and then move everyones qualification period up for however long the freeze lasted - if it's three months then three months, if the air travel crisis continues on, then 6 months, 9 months, as appropriate.
Yes, that is sensible. The effect of COVID-19 is, in effect, to freeze flying so it would make a lot of sense to freeze the calendar for at least as long as there is virtually no flying. While this will prolong everybody's status, it would be pretty much costless in itself to AFKL as virtually no one will be using any of the benefits of status during the period as virtually no-one will fly.
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Old Mar 18, 20, 5:12 pm
  #51  
 
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Originally Posted by Fabo.sk View Post
I have a feeling that this was a solution that sort of went with "hey you, intern, come up with something we can implement easily and will shut them up for at least two weeks". The Aeroflot, or, by now, Finnair (6 month extension) solution would be nicer, but I guess there isn't anyone in FB/AF/KL who wants to try and make calculations on what is the best solution. I suppose it is no help to them that FB is not just a loyalty system of one airline, or at least the two airlines in the same group, but also of KQ and RO, who might want to push through their own views.
Meanwhile the likes of SU can just at the position of SU itself, and they also have more history to look at to say "hey, 90% of them retain status anyway, we can afford to give extra status to those 10%". The data I don't think is readily available with the fairly fresh new FB, they would have to run simulations.

Personally, I would think the better solution at this time, instead of playing with the requal criteria, would be to just freeze the calendar for the duration, and then move everyones qualification period up for however long the freeze lasted - if it's three months then three months, if the air travel crisis continues on, then 6 months, 9 months, as appropriate.
At least that way you'd have a chance to catch up. I don't know how many folks travel patterns are such that they get about the same amount of XP every month, so 25% reduction in criteria works for them just fine. For me - I have a somewhat irregular travel pattern. I take a good bit more flights in Q2 than Q1, between April and May I would have done easily 50-60 XP, add to that March, and I'm some 70-80 XP in the hole, maybe a bit less if some flights went to *A, but still a lot more than the 45XP reduction offered...

yours is a sensible solution, that treats 'lost time' the same for everybody. It makes a lot of sense. Thanks
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Old Mar 18, 20, 6:33 pm
  #52  
 
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Originally Posted by gaukuser View Post
yours is a sensible solution, that treats 'lost time' the same for everybody. It makes a lot of sense. Thanks
Thank you.

Now those of you with more direct lines to Flying Blue, including the much esteemed (in theory at least ) Ultimates, would propose this to the Customer Loyalty team.
Who knows, maybe they will take it into consideration.

If not, my consulting fee is 6XP either way

(another minor advantage - the system would shield me from being bitter. I achieved Gold pretty much as soon as possible after new rule introduction. I pretty much only have my year ending in May, because I earned gold on last day of April, but had to retroclaim. Yet, someone ending their year in March, having effectively only lost one month of their travel potential, plus maybe some weeks if they travel to Asia, gets theoretical 3 months pro-rated off their requirements; me losing 3 of them at this rate get the same. But I am ranting.)
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Old Mar 19, 20, 2:05 am
  #53  
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
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Another way to treat everybody fine would be to offer to each account:
Explorer: 3/12 * 100 = 25xp
Silver: 3/12 x 180 = 45xp
Gold and Plat: 3/12 x 300 = 75xp

Depending on the final number of months of this crisis, those calculation can be adjusted.
It would help the members to maintain to their status or to move up to the higher status if they were on their way.
For plat or those who have already accumulated enough xp, they will still get an advantage and not the feeling to be punished without gift !

In my personal situation with october as a deadline, I already have 103xp out of 300:
- 36 are work-related in april-may-june depending on when we will be able to make it.
- 99 are supposed to be in July (if flying to the US is possible from Europe) --> if I can not make it, my status is lost whatever the scenario (even with the current or suggested "offers")
- 75 in october (if flying to canada is possible)

Last edited by canadavid; Mar 21, 20 at 2:43 am Reason: add details ( typo)
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Old Mar 19, 20, 3:05 am
  #54  
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Originally Posted by canadavid View Post
if I can not make it, my status is lost whatever the scenario (even with the current or suggested "offers")
It would not be lost under the Fabo.sk system, since your qualifying year would be prolonged by as many months as the crisis last. So, if flying is more or less impossible until September (so, 6 months of near total suppression of flying), then your year would run until next April instead of October.
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Old Mar 19, 20, 5:30 am
  #55  
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Comments have been shared

Thank you for your comments, they have been passed on to FB.
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Old Mar 19, 20, 5:49 am
  #56  
 
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Originally Posted by NickB View Post
It would not be lost under the Fabo.sk system, since your qualifying year would be prolonged by as many months as the crisis last. So, if flying is more or less impossible until September (so, 6 months of near total suppression of flying), then your year would run until next April instead of October.
l had in mind that this trip will be flyed or cancelled and not postponed.
but yes, it would be ok with this suggestion
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Old Mar 19, 20, 6:56 am
  #57  
 
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Originally Posted by Fabo.sk View Post
Thank you.

Now those of you with more direct lines to Flying Blue, including the much esteemed (in theory at least ) Ultimates, would propose this to the Customer Loyalty team.
Who knows, maybe they will take it into consideration.

If not, my consulting fee is 6XP either way

(another minor advantage - the system would shield me from being bitter. I achieved Gold pretty much as soon as possible after new rule introduction. I pretty much only have my year ending in May, because I earned gold on last day of April, but had to retroclaim. Yet, someone ending their year in March, having effectively only lost one month of their travel potential, plus maybe some weeks if they travel to Asia, gets theoretical 3 months pro-rated off their requirements; me losing 3 of them at this rate get the same. But I am ranting.)


I think it is best to wait a bit before reaching out to FB.
1st, it is clearly not a priority while airlines are struggling to survive
2nd, until we know how long this situation will last for no solution can be designed

But I will be happy to help in due time.
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Old Mar 19, 20, 7:26 am
  #58  
 
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Originally Posted by breton1fr View Post
I think it is best to wait a bit before reaching out to FB.
1st, it is clearly not a priority while airlines are struggling to survive
2nd, until we know how long this situation will last for no solution can be designed

But I will be happy to help in due time.
But then, other airlines are taking steps, which would make FB look bad for not taking any. It would be fine if the year was still aligned to calendar year, but it isn't, not for FB.
A catch-all solution does not need to be designed by now, but at least acknowledgment for those members ending their year in March and April is necessary.
This is one of multiple reasons I think freezing the calendar is the optimal solution. It gives time. Nothing happens while time is frozen, nobody has to immediately worry about losing their status, which in grand scheme of things is not that important, but it is very important for airlines indeed - a lot of people will be reconsidering their travel patterns after this is over. A lot of them, like our own Mr. Guggenheimer, will be facing lack of work; a lot of the others will still have work, but might decide to do a lot more off-site following experience during "lockdown". The last thing AFKL needs is for those who will travel to reconsider their loyalties and jump shop.

It buys them time, at little cost, as long as they need, month by month. Let's start today, with announcing a freeze for 2 months. To adjust for March and April, everyone will get two more months to requalify. Those ending their year in March, will find their year extended until May, and then in May, if things are good, that's it. If things are still not good, another postponement for 1 or 2 months can be announced. If there is a need for a systemwide change in the program, for whatever reason, FB has at least 2 months to develop it.

Another advantage is that it leaves no clients hanging. I have already noted my displeasure at the fact that these 3 months normally account for more than 1/4 of my travel; last year I earned full 90 of my XPs in months of April and May, and 15 more in March. With the current solution, I am instead effectively earning 45XP for the three months, while someone with a March year end is effectively earning 45XP for one month.

They still get the shaft though - for the following year. Whereas I can certainly hope to earn my missing 6XP in the coming months somehow, and start the next year with a clean sheet, the same person who got the gifted XPs might save their status, but they will not get any carryover (unless they were already over the limit anyway). But they still lose at least April, probably May into their next requalification. What of that - will they now get another 30XP to get them going? Then I am double-shafted and I might just decide that hey, I don't mind having to transfer in Germany/Switzerland/Austria/Poland that much after all, and just wave AFKL good-bye.

The calendar freeze solution solves all these issues and it gives some reassurance to those who have their periods end later in the year that they won't be left hanging either.

And as NickB noted, it's not like they have a lot of expenses for status benefits right now either.
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Old Mar 19, 20, 7:33 am
  #59  
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Currently, what exactly are you "hanging" for? AF/KL are flying maybe 17% of their capacity currently, and many of those places would require a quarantine on one end if you were actually flying. This is the situation pretty much everywhere and with every airline. Qantas announced they were extending status for a year and then essentially that they are shutting down commercial operations for at least a month. Virgin announced an extension, and they will be flying something like 5 flights a day next week GLOBALLY. AF/KL actually have a very GOOD record of extending status etc from similar and lesser situations in the past, so I'd just wait.
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Old Mar 20, 20, 10:59 am
  #60  
 
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Another data point: Air Europa extended status validity by six months.


IMHO this and the Aeroflot solution are the best and most fair for travellers as this way it is still in the hands of the traveller if they fly enough to maintain status. Lowering the XP threshold might be unfair to some who do not have regular flying patterns as they might not even have the chance to re-qualify if flights remain grounded and borders closed.
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