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Putting award tickets on hold & other confusing stuff

Putting award tickets on hold & other confusing stuff

 
Old Dec 4, 10, 3:56 pm
  #1  
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Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: Cary, NC
Posts: 67
Putting award tickets on hold & other confusing stuff

Has CO's policy changed with regard to holding award tickets? In the past, when I booked award travel, they'd would hold it for a short time -- 24 to 48 hrs, I think -- while I moved AmEx MM points over to fill in whatever was needed in our One Pass accounts.

Yesterday I called to try to book 2 RT tickets RDU-ARN in business class. (All I could see online were the EasyPass awards of 125k per leg, and in the past, reps sometimes see stuff I can't.) I know these folks have tedious jobs, and I try to be super nice. But this poor guy was grumpy from the moment he answered the phone. When I mentioned I'd be moving some points, he said, "Well, good luck. I can't hold award seats, so I hope they are still available after your transfer."

So, question #1 -- I know CO and AmEx are parting ways. Are they trying to help us get accustomed to the new reality?

Anyhoo, he offered me some 3 segments awards via IAD & FRA, and said he had no 2-segment tickets at any points level. Was about to thank him and move on when the phone went dead. Hmm.

So, I try to price the route in business class on CO's website to see if it will bankrupt me, and all that offered were 3-segments. (??) If I backed up, and changed it to coach, I'd get better offerings. When I tried booking business via Expedia, they offered me a fast Continental route straight through EWR, partly on SAS metal, best I can tell.

So, question #2, what was I doing wrong? I have no experience with ARN or SAS, so any insight welcome. Just looking to get educated.

Thanks.
MizLiz is offline  
Old Dec 4, 10, 5:16 pm
  #2  
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: CDG, LON, IAH
Programs: CO Gold
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Originally Posted by MizLiz View Post
Has CO's policy changed with regard to holding award tickets? In the past, when I booked award travel, they'd would hold it for a short time -- 24 to 48 hrs, I think -- while I moved AmEx MM points over to fill in whatever was needed in our One Pass accounts.

Yesterday I called to try to book 2 RT tickets RDU-ARN in business class. (All I could see online were the EasyPass awards of 125k per leg, and in the past, reps sometimes see stuff I can't.) I know these folks have tedious jobs, and I try to be super nice. But this poor guy was grumpy from the moment he answered the phone. When I mentioned I'd be moving some points, he said, "Well, good luck. I can't hold award seats, so I hope they are still available after your transfer."

So, question #1 -- I know CO and AmEx are parting ways. Are they trying to help us get accustomed to the new reality?

Anyhoo, he offered me some 3 segments awards via IAD & FRA, and said he had no 2-segment tickets at any points level. Was about to thank him and move on when the phone went dead. Hmm.

So, I try to price the route in business class on CO's website to see if it will bankrupt me, and all that offered were 3-segments. (??) If I backed up, and changed it to coach, I'd get better offerings. When I tried booking business via Expedia, they offered me a fast Continental route straight through EWR, partly on SAS metal, best I can tell.

So, question #2, what was I doing wrong? I have no experience with ARN or SAS, so any insight welcome. Just looking to get educated.

Thanks.
What worked for me in the past was to ticket it and pay. You get 24 hours to decide to cancel/change for no fee (+ of course refund). Looks like you have to ticket it though at first time: http://www.continental.com/web/en-us...romoCode=A5753

By the way, don't forget about First Class on Lufthansa or Swiss at 135k roundtrip US-Europe. Way better than EasyPass Business redemptions! And transitting in, say, BOS and MUC would be quite comfortable for a double connection.
marks88 is offline  
Old Dec 4, 10, 5:19 pm
  #3  
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Join Date: Apr 2001
Location: NYC
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For award seats they can absolutely be put on hold if you do not have sufficient points; the agent was mistaken on that one. That said, if you do have sufficient points they do not offer the hold option anymore.

As for purchasing revenue seats, co.com has a habit of only selling seats that involve CO metal (or at least those that heavily favor it). It is not a neutral booking engine like Expedia is wont to be.

On the "at any points level" bit, remember that EasyPass really only means increased inventory on CO/CS/CoEx metal (and maybe CM, too, but I don't think so and I'm not positive). So just because you're willing to part with piles of miles doesn't mean you can have any seat anywhere. If you're not elite you don't even get last seat availability on CO anymore.
sbm12 is offline  
Old Dec 5, 10, 9:00 am
  #4  
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Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: Cary, NC
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Originally Posted by marks88 View Post
By the way, don't forget about First Class on Lufthansa or Swiss at 135k roundtrip US-Europe.
Thanks. What is the best way to use Lufthansa? Do they take AmEx MM point transfers?

Thanks everyone for the helpful info.
MizLiz is offline  
Old Dec 5, 10, 9:37 am
  #5  
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Join Date: Apr 2001
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Originally Posted by MizLiz View Post
Thanks. What is the best way to use Lufthansa? Do they take AmEx MM point transfers?

Thanks everyone for the helpful info.
You still redeem OnePass miles but you use their partner, Lufthansa, as the airline for the travel.
sbm12 is offline  

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