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Hang on to your wallets - $50 co-pay increase for mileage upgrades, effective Oct 1st

Hang on to your wallets - $50 co-pay increase for mileage upgrades, effective Oct 1st

 
Old Aug 6, 08, 6:39 pm
  #61  
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Originally Posted by bdemaria View Post
It depends on the routing:

LAX to JFK: 2475 miles, 5 hrs 30 min. hours, 15K miles + 50.00 copay

BOS to LHR: 3265 miles, 6 hrs. 30 min., 25K miles + 350.00 copay

In comparison, it makes the transcon seem like quite a deal to me.
Not to mention SFO-MIA-SJU 3630 miles for 15K miles, better before the copay, but still.......
(Much better when SFO-MIA was a 763 )
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Old Aug 7, 08, 12:02 am
  #62  
 
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Originally Posted by pdog02 View Post
New Changes to Upgrade Awards

In addition to the award changes already announced that are taking effect October 1, 2008, AAdvantage will be announcing the following tomorrow:

Effective October 1, 2008, a non-refundable co-payment of $50.00USD will be required to claim one-way upgrade awards used with most Discount Economy fares when traveling:

Within the continental U.S. / Canada
Within and between the continental U.S. / Canada / Mexico / The Caribbean
Between North America and Central America

Additionally, the non-refundable co-payment required when claiming one-way upgrade awards from most Discount Economy fares when traveling between North America and Europe, Japan, China, India, Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, or Uruguay will increase from $300.00USD to $350.00USD. Co-pays on upgrades to/from Hawaii and South America Zone 1 will remain at $150.00USD.

So basically, a free upgrade costs $50. I recall booking my first free R/T flight using AA miles a year ago and it cost me nearly $100. Not even sure why they offer miles anymore. It's just a game, a game in which the passengers lose. Pretty soon, booking a free ticket using AA miles will cost more than buying actual ticket.
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Old Aug 7, 08, 12:39 am
  #63  
 
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Originally Posted by cbr600f4i2 View Post
So basically, a free upgrade costs $50. I recall booking my first free R/T flight using AA miles a year ago and it cost me nearly $100. Not even sure why they offer miles anymore. It's just a game, a game in which the passengers lose. Pretty soon, booking a free ticket using AA miles will cost more than buying actual ticket.
Although I think you'll find that there are many here who still believe frequent flyer miles can still hold real value, even with the extra fees, you are right that using them for coach tickets is becoming less and less of a money-saver. And I fear that your last sentence is no far-flung prophecy: it is already the case with some European and Asian carriers that redeeming certain awards costs more than paying for the flights outright.
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Old Aug 7, 08, 1:55 am
  #64  
 
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Originally Posted by Ajohn View Post
And I fear that your last sentence is no far-flung prophecy: it is already the case with some European and Asian carriers that redeeming certain awards costs more than paying for the flights outright.
Very true. AA award redemptions are still comparativley good value. BAEC economy redemption charges are just ridiculous.
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Old Aug 7, 08, 1:56 am
  #65  
 
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Deleted
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Old Aug 7, 08, 2:41 am
  #66  
 
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Email: AAdvantage Mileage Award Upgrades

Just got an email from AA with the above subject line. Replied, and I know it probably went into some bit bucket, but my reply was:

Is the price increase a good thing?

Cheers,
DocD
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Old Aug 7, 08, 3:42 am
  #67  
 
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Originally Posted by Mark_T View Post
The quote above states the changed fee 'will be required to claim one-way upgrade awards'

That is consistent with the fact that you pay the co-pay when claiming the award so I would expect that upgrades claimed before Oct 1st will be at the current prices not the new price.
Thanks, I guess I wasn't sure about the meaning of the phrase "claim"... whether that meant the original requesting of an upgrade even on waitlist (which is what your post suggests) or when you actual got it. This except from the recent e-mail from AA confirms the first interpretation:

The current award structure will apply to members who request upgrade awards prior to October 1.
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Old Aug 7, 08, 7:33 am
  #68  
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The full e-mail:

"Move To The Front Of The Plane!
American Airlines and AAdvantage logos

Dear JDiver,

Did you realize that your AAdvantage® miles could move you into Business or First class on your next trip on American Airlines*? That's right - AAdvantage members traveling on most purchased fare tickets have the ability to use miles or miles plus a co-payment to upgrade to the next cabin of service.

You can request a mileage award upgrade when you purchase your ticket or alternatively, at anytime up until 2 hours prior to departure. If an upgrade is not available when you request it, we will add you to our upgrade waitlist and you will be automatically confirmed when an upgrade award becomes available**.

Members purchasing full Economy fares (booked in Y or B) may use as little as 5,000 miles each way to upgrade on domestic itineraries and as little as 8,000 miles each way to upgrade on international itineraries.

Effective October 1, 2008, Upgrade awards from most Discount Economy fares will change as follows:
  • Upgrade within the continental U.S. and Canada, within and between the continental U.S. / Canada / Mexico / The Caribbean or between North America and Central America will require 15,000 miles plus a $50 co-payment.
  • Upgrade between North America and Europe, Japan, China, Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile or Uruguay will require 25,000 plus a $350 co-payment
  • Upgrade between North America and India will require 40,000 miles plus a $350 co-payment

The current award structure will apply to members who request upgrade awards prior to October 1. For complete information regarding award changes, visit www.aacom/awardchanges.

Make the most of your AAdvantage miles and treat yourself to an upgrade on your next trip. We hope to see you on board soon!

Sincerely,

Rob Friedman
President
AAdvantage Marketing Programs"

I can move up to the front of the plane? Oh, wow!
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Old Aug 7, 08, 11:53 am
  #69  
 
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Originally Posted by JDiver View Post
"Move To The Front Of The Plane!
American Airlines and AAdvantage logos

Dear JDiver,

Did you realize that your AAdvantage® miles could move you into Business or First class on your next trip on American Airlines*? That's right - AAdvantage members traveling on most purchased fare tickets have the ability to use miles or miles plus a co-payment to upgrade to the next cabin of service.

You can request a mileage award upgrade when you purchase your ticket or alternatively, at anytime up until 2 hours prior to departure. If an upgrade is not available when you request it, we will add you to our upgrade waitlist and you will be automatically confirmed when an upgrade award becomes available**.

Members purchasing full Economy fares (booked in Y or B) may use as little as 5,000 miles each way to upgrade on domestic itineraries and as little as 8,000 miles each way to upgrade on international itineraries.

Effective October 1, 2008, Upgrade awards from most Discount Economy fares will change as follows:
  • Upgrade within the continental U.S. and Canada, within and between the continental U.S. / Canada / Mexico / The Caribbean or between North America and Central America will require 15,000 miles plus a $50 co-payment.
  • Upgrade between North America and Europe, Japan, China, Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile or Uruguay will require 25,000 plus a $350 co-payment
  • Upgrade between North America and India will require 40,000 miles plus a $350 co-payment

The current award structure will apply to members who request upgrade awards prior to October 1. For complete information regarding award changes, visit www.aacom/awardchanges.

Make the most of your AAdvantage miles and treat yourself to an upgrade on your next trip. We hope to see you on board soon!

Sincerely,

Rob Friedman
President
AAdvantage Marketing Programs"

I can move up to the front of the plane? Oh, wow!
Yeah, I feel TONS better after reading that email. Here's the next email we're likely to get:

Fly between any of our Southern California airports and DFW and see the Grand Canyon!
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Old Aug 7, 08, 12:52 pm
  #70  
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Originally Posted by cbr600f4i2 View Post
So basically, a free upgrade costs $50. I recall booking my first free R/T flight using AA miles a year ago and it cost me nearly $100. Not even sure why they offer miles anymore. It's just a game, a game in which the passengers lose. Pretty soon, booking a free ticket using AA miles will cost more than buying actual ticket.
So don't give you AAdvantage number when you fly, and don't earn any miles, and then you won't have to worry about any of this.
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Old Aug 7, 08, 2:27 pm
  #71  
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Originally Posted by cbr600f4i2 View Post
So basically, a free upgrade costs $50. I recall booking my first free R/T flight using AA miles a year ago and it cost me nearly $100. Not even sure why they offer miles anymore. It's just a game, a game in which the passengers lose. Pretty soon, booking a free ticket using AA miles will cost more than buying actual ticket.
I am sure a good part of your $100 paid was Tax and 9/11 security fee that the airline did not get, but your government pocketed it.

I paid $196 tax and fee on a business class award between Europe and North America to accommodate 2 Transatlantic cruises. The ticket if purchased, would be $7800 if using AA for both Transatlantic legs, $9800 if booked identically as the actual award ticket with BA on the return leg YYZ/LHR/BCN. I say I got a very good value of the 90K + $196 spent. Even with the new 100K miles requirement, it is still a very good deal.

If you dont like the program, just fly without FF number attached to your booking and you are "freed" from this game. Simple.
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Old Aug 7, 08, 3:44 pm
  #72  
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Originally Posted by Ajohn View Post
Although I think you'll find that there are many here who still believe frequent flyer miles can still hold real value, even with the extra fees, you are right that using them for coach tickets is becoming less and less of a money-saver. And I fear that your last sentence is no far-flung prophecy: it is already the case with some European and Asian carriers that redeeming certain awards costs more than paying for the flights outright.
so if aa did this, essentially (for these flights) miles for flying purposes are useless. there are other things (like magazines) one could use miles for, but if i subscribed to all the magazines in their list--i still would have lots of miles leftover.
if aa were to make earning miles a frivolous operation--they may lose their customer base to the low cost airlines.
PS: spirit airlines has some (seemingly) super fares and promos.
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Old Aug 7, 08, 4:22 pm
  #73  
 
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Does anyone remember S&H Green Stamps (I'm showing my age)? Near their end days my Mom needed nearly a dozen books of stamps in order to redeem an electric iron.
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Old Aug 7, 08, 4:34 pm
  #74  
nrr
 
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Originally Posted by JetAway View Post
Does anyone remember S&H Green Stamps (I'm showing my age)? Near their end days my Mom needed nearly a dozen books of stamps in order to redeem an electric iron.
In some casinos there is still a slot machine game based on S&H Green Stamps--you collect stamps (as part of the game) to win money.
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Old Aug 8, 08, 4:09 am
  #75  
 
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too funny, getting S&H green stamps for plugging a one-armed bandit

my friend who flies for WN refers to our FF obsession as "going for the toaster". of course he has to relent a little when I point out the glories of upgrading on overnight TATL/TPAC flights. toaster, indeed.
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