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MileSAAver / SAAver award reduction / scarcity discussion

Old Jan 25, 2014, 3:56 pm
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Last edit by: JDiver

Be sure to check the lengthy http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/ameri...elections.html and oneworld and Other Airline (Partner) Awards info, rules 2014 on threads, as many members have posted questions - and useful answers - there. See the wiki posts for informative summaries.

Also be aware - AA have reduced capacity and apparently chosen to make MileSAAver flights significantly less available during predicted periods of high demand and high demand flights, undoubtedly keeping seats available for those willing to pay higher fares and use the new tiered AAnytime awards.

Older posts as of 1 Jan 2015 and later may be found in thd archived thread ARCHIVE: MileSAAver / SAAver award reduction discussion post 2015 AAdvantage merger

Older posts may dating from Aug 2011 through the AAdvantage program merger January 2015 be found in the archived thread here.

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MileSAAver / SAAver award reduction / scarcity discussion

Old Feb 7, 2017, 11:12 pm
  #241  
 
Join Date: Nov 2013
Location: PHX, SEA
Programs: DL Silver, Avis President's Club, Hertz President's Circle, Global Entry (Former AA Plt/Gold)
Posts: 4,411
Originally Posted by neo_781
Most likely yes. There are some exceptions like if you are willing to spend money for the BA surcharges via LHR and some other Oneworld partners have some availability (I think IB is also good to Europe via MAD and AB too maybe assuming they still are around when its time for you to book or travel).

But the general rule these days is that AA metal is tough to find availability with saver inventory for J (or F where the cabin exists) to most destinations.

That is not to say that it is 0 across the board for all destinations all year long, just that it is not readily available to most destinations on a regular basis.
I'm looking for an Asia route for 2018 but fairly specific dates because it aligns with a cruise.

If I'm paying for J, my alternative is to do a status match to DL in January before my Plat downgrades to Gold, and buy my ticket with them, at least then I have a fresh start and a second carrier to evaluate.
Gig103 is offline  
Old Feb 8, 2017, 1:37 am
  #242  
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Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Bay Area
Programs: DL SM, UA MP.
Posts: 12,729
Originally Posted by rjw242
Why would it matter what's underneath the plane?

JFK-LAX is comparable in flight time to a number of trips "over an ocean". Not to mention it commands a large premium in paid fares, so it stands to reason that award flights would also cost more miles.
Oh is it comparable to a TPAC or TATL from LAX, since the poster was originating from that airport?

What flight from the continental US that crosses an ocean is comparable to 5-6 hour flight from LAX?
wco81 is offline  
Old Feb 8, 2017, 4:46 am
  #243  
 
Join Date: Apr 2000
Location: san antonio, texas
Programs: 3.2MM AA, 1.4MM UA,StwdLftPlt
Posts: 1,586
One interesting observation to me about AA award availability. From SAT, have to connect thru DFW, ORD or MIA for most routes. The website will show availability, but it most of it will involve an overnight in one of the connecting cities. Frequently, when you examine availability of individual segments, there is space available on a more reasonable connection (i.e. you can leave the morning of and connect to the flight). Presumably from AA's perspective, they can argue that award space is available and perhaps when the annual surveys are done, they register as valid awards. However, an unworkable alternative for me. Haven't seen the same pattern on other domestic or foreign carriers.
luckypierre is offline  
Old Feb 8, 2017, 5:50 am
  #244  
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Murcia, Spain
Programs: AADVANTAGE, Iberia Plus, BA Exec Blue, Hertz #1Gold, HHonors Gold, AS, Paradores Amigos
Posts: 503
I am so angry about this. The following message I sent to American via Twitter message is self explanatory, I think...

"We are starting to plan our next trip. We buy J-class for cash across from Spain then use miles for 1st Class Domestic flights. Been Aadvantage for many years. I was conned into buying more miles at a cost of over $1400. Now I find, even 10+ months out, there are NO award flights available in 1st class cabin as I always found before. The AAdvantage programme is a confidence trick and I was missold those miles with promises of free travel. I want my money back while I look for another airline that doesn't treat its loyal customers like manure."
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Old Feb 8, 2017, 6:15 am
  #245  
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: SF Bay Area
Programs: AA LT PLT 3 MM+, BA (very) Blue, CO nobody
Posts: 2,640
Originally Posted by johnash
I am so angry about this. The following message I sent to American via Twitter message is self explanatory, I think...

"We are starting to plan our next trip. We buy J-class for cash across from Spain then use miles for 1st Class Domestic flights. Been Aadvantage for many years. I was conned into buying more miles at a cost of over $1400. Now I find, even 10+ months out, there are NO award flights available in 1st class cabin as I always found before. The AAdvantage programme is a confidence trick and I was missold those miles with promises of free travel. I want my money back while I look for another airline that doesn't treat its loyal customers like manure."
While I totally agree with you I hope that you don't actually expect your money back
If you do, I am afraid you will be very disappointed.
Paulchili is offline  
Old Feb 8, 2017, 6:32 am
  #246  
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: LAX
Posts: 1,849
Originally Posted by Paulchili
While I totally agree with you I hope that you don't actually expect your money back
Why not? They sell them with a clear
"so much closer to a free flight" bs.
If there is no free flights, its a false ad.
Big_Foot is offline  
Old Feb 8, 2017, 7:04 am
  #247  
 
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: New York, NY
Posts: 3,698
Originally Posted by Big_Foot
Why not? They sell them with a clear
"so much closer to a free flight" bs.
If there is no free flights, its a false ad.
While I agree that SAAver availability sucks and makes RDMs much less valuable, AA still offers last seat availability for AAnytime awards, so there's tons of free flights, they just cost a lot more miles than you might hope/expect.
jordyn is offline  
Old Feb 8, 2017, 7:10 am
  #248  
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: AUS
Programs: BAEC Gold, AA PPro, Hyatt Globalist, Amex Plat
Posts: 6,942
Originally Posted by flowersrj
I just found out last night that I can't even upgrade to a business class seat to Hawaii next February using miles and cash. They want me to buy a regular ticket and they will notify me if an upgrade set becomes available. If not, I either flyer using that regular ticket or lose the money I paid for the ticket. The person said they are holding the tickets in case a person wants to buy a business/first class ticket.


-Rich
Ummm... welcome to 2014. It gets worse from there.

Regards
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Old Feb 8, 2017, 7:23 am
  #249  
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Murcia, Spain
Programs: AADVANTAGE, Iberia Plus, BA Exec Blue, Hertz #1Gold, HHonors Gold, AS, Paradores Amigos
Posts: 503
Originally Posted by Big_Foot
Why not? They sell them with a clear
"so much closer to a free flight" bs.
If there is no free flights, its a false ad.
Hear hear. If I were in UK, which I'm not, dealing with a UK company, which I'm not, Trading Standards, I'm sure, would have deemed that I was sold something which was mis-represented to me, whether the small print stated "no refunds" or not.
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Old Feb 8, 2017, 11:49 am
  #250  
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: SF Bay Area
Programs: AA LT PLT 3 MM+, BA (very) Blue, CO nobody
Posts: 2,640
Duplicate post

Last edited by Paulchili; Feb 8, 2017 at 12:02 pm
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Old Feb 8, 2017, 4:22 pm
  #251  
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Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: Florida
Posts: 29,709
Citi

In case y'all are not aware, as of this moment Citi is having a No Restriction 50K bonus miles application link readily available online. People are applying the card every 30+ days (or 2 cards in 65 days). If they get approved, they can even SM to match for a 60K targeted offer. There are folks claim they got matched 10 out of 10 times in the past 2 years. There are folks claim that they average one card per month in their household, presumably husband and wife.

So there, miles continue to flood the "market", ridiculous AAnytime pricing and scarcity Saaver availability be damned!

I feel really sorry for those who are duped into purchasing AA miles at various bonus offers that such emails constantly coming to my inbox.

Had it not for the CX and JL, or even QR, we would be staring at our almost 1.5 million combined balances from over the years with extreme frustration. Thanks to these 3, and some non-US routings. we are able to use 50% of them in the past 12 months, although at this moment I have very difficult time trying to find 2 J seats in 2nd half of May to return from EU to US from ANY airport except MAN and LHR to ANY airport in US without any success.

Last edited by Happy; Feb 8, 2017 at 4:28 pm
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Old Feb 9, 2017, 1:13 pm
  #252  
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Posts: 1,431
Originally Posted by JonNYC
Fixed!
LOL !!
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Old Feb 9, 2017, 1:23 pm
  #253  
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: DFW/DAL
Programs: AA 1MM Gold, Marriott Gold, Hilton Diamond, Hyatt Discoverist
Posts: 1,524
Originally Posted by bmrsjohn
Extremely frustrating afternoon looking at award space. Never even planned on this making me mad. Booking an award on Etihad CLT-ORD-AUH in J. I found availability on Etihad but there is no Saver availability on the CLT-ORD leg so now instead of 70,000 miles I am looking at 95,000. Past years this was never an issue.
This is one of my biggest complaints! You can use partners and route all over the world with no problem, but then when it comes to the domestic connector there is NOTHING, even in Y 95% of the time! They need to open domestic seats in Y for connection to a US gateway city when you're going transpac/transatl.
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Old Feb 9, 2017, 1:35 pm
  #254  
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: DFW/DAL
Programs: AA 1MM Gold, Marriott Gold, Hilton Diamond, Hyatt Discoverist
Posts: 1,524
Originally Posted by jordyn
While I agree that SAAver availability sucks and makes RDMs much less valuable, AA still offers last seat availability for AAnytime awards, so there's tons of free flights, they just cost a lot more miles than you might hope/expect.
I don't understand why people value "last-seat" availability at all. I've burned through over 6 million miles the past few years and have 5 million in the bank. NOT ONCE have I redeemed at "standard" or "last seat" rates. Buy that ticket (with cash or bank points). Don't waste 50-100k miles on a one-way domestic ticket. Save those miles for a future international flight. Learn to be more flexible with dates AND destinations.
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Old Feb 9, 2017, 1:38 pm
  #255  
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Originally Posted by glocklt4
I don't understand why people value "last-seat" availability at all. I've burned through over 6 million miles the past few years and have 5 million in the bank. Not ONCE have I redeemed at "standard" or "last seat" rates. Buy that ticket (with cash or bank points). Don't waste 50-100k miles on a one-way domestic ticket. Save those miles for a future international flight. Learn to be more flexible with dates AND destinations.
I don't think the idea was "aren't Anytime awards great!" on any way, the post you quote was was just a factual reply-- with all the appropriate caveats-- to:

Originally Posted by Big_Foot
Why not? They sell them with a clear
"so much closer to a free flight" bs.
If there is no free flights, its a false ad.
JonNYC is offline  

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