Legality of AFKL price discrimination for upgrades

Old Mar 12, 2024, 1:08 am
  #46  
 
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The point was in reply to someone's comment about employees "playing the game" to accrue status, favoring certain carriers un their choice of destination, routing, and so on. This is the intended results of FF programs.
I do believe that about five years ago, the German courts ruled that miles count as wealth, and therefore are taxable. But, as I understood the form, the meaning was different: any benefit from a FF program. Elite status? That probably costs the airline 30 Euros every time you fly, and to buy the benefit of luggage, priority, lounge, and seat up front would cost you more, let's say 100€/flight. Are those taxable benefits if you're flying personally but earned the status in part through professional travel? I certainly don't think so.
The claim seems to be that, if you are making your professional travel choices based even in part on what you personally will receive, instead of the best deal for the government, you're using your public position to profit privately: five personal round-trip flights in a year, and you've accrued €1000 retail in benefits earned by paying three times the price of EasyJet. On the other hand, to save money by requiring employees to arrange their own travel and then be reimbursed, those same institutions are happy to profit from the private wealth of their employees. This is why in many places, the company arranges travel.
About the legality of the inscrutable algorithm, this is a much larger societal problem. We're moving into a world where there are very few companies dominating entire sectors of the economy, they are fed on extremely rich data concerning their customers, and their goal is to extract the most money from these customers in exchange for delivering the lowest cost product. And, with airlines, frequent flyer programs are the means to collect that data and the route to exploit them. So, don't expect things to get cheaper because you have status, expect them to get just bearably expensive enough that you won't be tempted to switch to the *A or 1W hamster wheels.
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Old Mar 12, 2024, 4:27 am
  #47  
 
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Originally Posted by BubbaX
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I do believe that about five years ago, the German courts ruled that miles count as wealth, and therefore are taxable. But, as I understood the form, the meaning was different: any benefit from a FF program. Elite status? That probably costs the airline 30 Euros every time you fly, and to buy the benefit of luggage, priority, lounge, and seat up front would cost you more, let's say 100€/flight. Are those taxable benefits if you're flying personally but earned the status in part through professional travel? I certainly don't think so.
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I don't believe that benefits enter into this at all. That is not something you receive directly in return for your work. It's effectively a discount to 0 that a given operator is giving you for a service they offer, and that's their prerogative to do. Now if they offered the benefit specifically because you fly for business and the customer buying the same tickets all for leisure would not receive them, that might be different.

Mileage on the other hand is something you receive as a direct result of company travel, and you receive it personally and can use it by your own discretion.

Originally Posted by ofj
Not to get this thread off-topic, but wait a moment - are you saying that if I reside in Germany, any miles/points I earn from credit cards, airline/hotel FFPs, can and will be taxed??
Only those earned directly from business travel paid by your employer, which I would guess also excludes CCs, and definitely excludes private travel. Additionally my understanding is the mileage is taxed at time of use (realizing the income) instead of at time of earning.
And it seems that at least M&M has a clause where it assumes the tax liability such as exists, per some statute or another of the applicable German law.


In a broader sense, the debate has been ongoing since at least the 90s, and has generated academic papers even, but in few countries is it explicitely settled in legislation.
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Old Mar 12, 2024, 5:13 am
  #48  
 
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Originally Posted by curiousexplorer
what would happen if you withdrew your consent for your data to be used for this purpose?).
One of: all your tickets become non-upgradable at OLCI without a refare, or you always get quoted the maximum price for such.
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Old Mar 12, 2024, 7:21 am
  #49  
 
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When it comes to cash offers I guess we can always give the offer a pass if we are not happy with it.

What I am more concerned about is upgrading with miles:
-there is no table explaining number of miles required to upgrade from say Premium Economy to Business
- it no longer seems to be the case that a W class ticket will require less miles to upgrade than an A class ticket

These used to be clearer in the past and also bookable online.
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Old Mar 12, 2024, 8:22 am
  #50  
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Originally Posted by FB06
When it comes to cash offers I guess we can always give the offer a pass if we are not happy with it.

What I am more concerned about is upgrading with miles:
-there is no table explaining number of miles required to upgrade from say Premium Economy to Business
- it no longer seems to be the case that a W class ticket will require less miles to upgrade than an A class ticket

These used to be clearer in the past and also bookable online.
A new mileage upgrade tool (for upgrades purchased in advance, separate from last minute upgrades purchased during check in) is currently being developped & will be released in the coming months (finally!).
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Old Mar 12, 2024, 9:09 am
  #51  
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Originally Posted by Ben Lipsey
A new mileage upgrade tool (for upgrades purchased in advance, separate from last minute upgrades purchased during check in) is currently being developped & will be released in the coming months (finally!).
That’s amazing news, thank you Ben! Will advance upgrades be possible also with cash or only miles?
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Old Mar 12, 2024, 9:26 am
  #52  
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Originally Posted by curiousexplorer
That’s amazing news, thank you Ben! Will advance upgrades be possible also with cash or only miles?
Both will be possible.
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Old Mar 14, 2024, 3:00 am
  #53  
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Originally Posted by Ben Lipsey
Both will be possible.
I assume that the "cash upgrade option in advance" will be eligible for XP/mileage in the new cabin. Is that correct?
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Old Mar 14, 2024, 10:11 am
  #54  
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Originally Posted by ofj
I assume that the "cash upgrade option in advance" will be eligible for XP/mileage in the new cabin. Is that correct?
Yes, new cabin XP applies for cash upgrades. Miles upgrades will have XP of orignal cabin.

Cash upgrade functionality is now live actually, you should be able to find it in My Trips
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Old Mar 14, 2024, 10:43 am
  #55  
 
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Originally Posted by Ben Lipsey
Cash upgrade functionality is now live actually, you should be able to find it in My Trips
Looking forward to the new thread and aggregating all the consistent, transparent and affordable offers we are going to get!
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Old Mar 14, 2024, 11:03 am
  #56  
 
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Originally Posted by Ben Lipsey
Yes, new cabin XP applies for cash upgrades. Miles upgrades will have XP of orignal cabin.

Cash upgrade functionality is now live actually, you should be able to find it in My Trips
very cool - however for my upcoming trips the cash upgrade prices are out of my league. I guess it's just a simplified rebooking process including change fees.
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Old Mar 14, 2024, 11:24 am
  #57  
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Is it appearing as an extra option? I am looking at a future booking in April and it doesn’t appear there yet. Neither on the seat map. 🤔
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Old Mar 14, 2024, 11:41 am
  #58  
 
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Originally Posted by curiousexplorer
Is it appearing as an extra option? I am looking at a future booking in April and it doesn’t appear there yet. Neither on the seat map. 🤔
as extra option - only in the website, not in the app.
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Old Mar 14, 2024, 12:33 pm
  #59  
ofj
 
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Originally Posted by Ben Lipsey

Cash upgrade functionality is now live actually, you should be able to find it in My Trips
This is a huge addition and sorely needed. It was always available via phone before, but now, having an online option is so much more convenient. Thank you!
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Old Mar 14, 2024, 1:12 pm
  #60  
 
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Originally Posted by Ben Lipsey
Yes, new cabin XP applies for cash upgrades. Miles upgrades will have XP of orignal cabin.

Cash upgrade functionality is now live actually, you should be able to find it in My Trips

On my next trip I have no such option, neither on app nor on the browser.
Previously, I had an upgrade button that prompted a “contact the call center” message.
Now it disappeared completely.
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