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Can't believe I got the equivalent of 10 cents a mile on this fare

Can't believe I got the equivalent of 10 cents a mile on this fare

 
Old Jan 16, 08, 7:26 pm
  #1  
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Can't believe I got the equivalent of 10 cents a mile on this fare

Some of you won't care, some of you might be interested. I'm just shocked at the value per mile I got on this deal.

Coach fare in U: EWR-HNL $604.00
BusinessFirst Upgrade Fee: $800.00
TOTAL: $1404.00 + 35,000 Miles

Cost to Purchase J Fare: $4,930.00

(4930-1404)/35000= $0.101/value per mile WOW!!!

Last edited by TommyC80; May 9, 14 at 12:08 pm
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Old Jan 16, 08, 7:47 pm
  #2  
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I do it all the time It's the only thing I use my miles for.

Congratulations ^
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Old Jan 16, 08, 7:50 pm
  #3  
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Flying IAH-EWR-HKG, we can usually get total cost of $1,900 + 50,000 miles roundtrip for BF, while full J fare is over $10,000.
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Old Jan 16, 08, 7:53 pm
  #4  
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Originally Posted by TommyC80 View Post
Some of you won't care, some of you might be interested. I'm just shocked at the value per mile I got on this deal.

Coach fare in U: EWR-HNL $604.00 (05/25/08-06/01/08)
BusinessFirst Upgrade Fee: $800.00
TOTAL: $1404.00 + 35,000 Miles

Cost to Purchase J Fare: $4,930.00

(4930-1404)/35000= $0.101/value per mile WOW!!!

If you could do one connection, EWR-IAH-HNL, HNL-LAX-EWR is available for $2,580 in paid BF (R class).


Scenario 1: EWR-HNL-EWR upgraded
Cash Paid: $1,404
Base Miles Earned: 9,924
Fare Bonus: 0
Plat Bonus: 12,405
Total Miles Earned: 22,329
Miles Burned: 35,000
-----------------------------
TOTAL: $1,404 spent, -12,671 miles earned

Scenario 2: EWR-IAH-HNL-LAX-EWR Paid R
Cash Paid: $2,580
Base Miles Earned: 10,314
Fare Bonus: 5,157
Plat Bonus: 12,893
Total Miles Earned: 28,364
Miles Burned: 0
-----------------------------
TOTAL: $2,580 spent, 28,364 miles earned

So if you were willing to accept the schedule difference, the difference between the two is:

$1,176 and 41,035 miles, or about $0.02865 per mile.

(and the paid R would have earned 15,471 EQM vs. 9,924 EQM).
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Old Jan 16, 08, 8:05 pm
  #5  
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Originally Posted by channa View Post
If you could do one connection, EWR-IAH-HNL, HNL-LAX-EWR is available for $2,580 in paid BF (R class).
You also have to suffer domestic F on half the return, so it isn't 100% apples-to-apples, but still a very interesting comparison.
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Old Jan 16, 08, 8:42 pm
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Originally Posted by TommyC80 View Post
Coach fare in U: EWR-HNL $604.00 (05/25/08-06/01/08)
BusinessFirst Upgrade Fee: $800.00
TOTAL: $1404.00 + 35,000 Miles

Cost to Purchase J Fare: $4,930.00

(4930-1404)/35000= $0.101/value per mile WOW!!!
$5K for BF to HNL? I think this says much more about the poor value of the J fare (as channa alludes to).

I'd do JFK-SFO/LAX-HNL on UA ($600) and upgrade each way with a CR-1.
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Old Jan 16, 08, 9:04 pm
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Originally Posted by sbm12 View Post
You also have to suffer domestic F on half the return, so it isn't 100% apples-to-apples, but still a very interesting comparison.
It's listed as a 752 on the return (6/1), so that's a BF config. If they change it to something else, you can use that equipment change as grounds to change to IAH or even non-stop if you'd prefer.
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Old Jan 16, 08, 10:10 pm
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Also if you're willing to roll the dice you can do a rev up for 350/one way with no mileage.
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Old Jan 17, 08, 12:07 am
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I would calculate if differently. The value that you mention is the theoretical value (because of J pricing.) The actual value is the value between what you paid and what you would have agreed to pay for J. I assume most people (ever here ) would not pay 4-5K for this trip. Suppose you were willing to pay 2k. In this case the value is 2k-600 / 35,000 or so.
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Old Jan 17, 08, 12:12 am
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Originally Posted by oresh View Post
Suppose you were willing to pay 2k. In this case the value is 2k-600 / 35,000 or so.
Almost right.

It's $2K (what you were willing to pay in cash) - $1,400 (what he did pay in cash) = $600 (what he saved in cash) / 35,000 = $0.0171 per mile.
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Old Jan 17, 08, 12:25 am
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Originally Posted by channa View Post
Almost right.

It's $2K (what you were willing to pay in cash) - $1,400 (what he did pay in cash) = $600 (what he saved in cash) / 35,000 = $0.0171 per mile.
Almost right. He's also losing about 5,500 EQM over a paid J as per your own post; so it's worth slightly less. ($600/(35,000+5,500))=$0.015 per mile.

Of course, we are making a guess / assumption that the OP's WTP=$2K.
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Old Jan 17, 08, 7:01 am
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Originally Posted by super-mileage-fan View Post
Almost right. He's also losing about 5,500 EQM over a paid J as per your own post; so it's worth slightly less. ($600/(35,000+5,500))=$0.015 per mile.

Of course, we are making a guess / assumption that the OP's WTP=$2K.
Doh...good catch. Though it should be the RDM, not EQM, that we need to use. So let's use a 1-stop example, of 28,364 miles earned (including COS and Plat boni):

$600/(35,000 + 28,364) = $0.0095 per mile.

(i.e., he saved $600 in cash, and lost 63,364 miles (35,000 miles for the award, and 28,364 in lost earnings/opportunity cost).

So we're not near a dime, rather we're under a penny.
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Old Jan 17, 08, 7:11 am
  #13  
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mikew99 is correct. While this is a relatively good use of miles as far as CO miles go, UA doesn't charge an upgrade co-pay and it's fewer miles as well. They do not, however, fly EWR-HNL non-stop if that's your cup of tea, and CO's product is better to Hawaii. But I'll take UA nonetheless, thanks!
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Old Jan 17, 08, 7:27 am
  #14  
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Originally Posted by channa View Post
Doh...good catch. Though it should be the RDM, not EQM, that we need to use. So let's use a 1-stop example, of 28,364 miles earned (including COS and Plat boni):
Except that, as he is buying a ticket and upgrading, he still earns 100% miles, plus any bonuses. So all he loses is the 50% bonus for COS. As such, super-mileage-fan is closer to the truth with his 5500 mile number as the appropriate number of "lost" miles.
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Old Jan 17, 08, 7:54 am
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This all got a bit confused, so I started the calculations again for clarity. The only things that matter are: your value of an RDM in cents, and your additional enjoyment (in $ terms) of sitting in BF on the nonstop, or of sitting in F/BF on a one-stop, relative to flying coach. Posters above used a $1400 figure for the additional enjoyment of BF on the nonstop versus coach. I'm going to assume F/BF on a one-stop would be about a $1000 value in that case.

That takes the math to:

Option 1: fly coach nonstop
Cost $604, earn 22,328 miles and 9,924 EQM.

Option 2: upgrade nonstop
Cost $604 + $800 + 35000 miles, earn 22328 miles
Additional value (relative to option 1): $1400 (assuming that it's worth $700 each way to sit in BF rather than Y, and this is just a guess, the poster should choose his/her own value).
Additional cost, $800 + 35000 miles.
Net gain: $600 at cost of 35000 miles.

Option 3: fly BF nonstop in paid J
Cost $4900, earn 27290 miles and 13,645 EQM
Additional value (relative to option 1): $1400 extra enjoyment, 4,962 miles, and 3,721 EQM. Also extra flexibility (ticket is changeable, can be purchased last minute, ...)
Additional cost: $4296.
Deal: earning 4,926 RDM and 3,721 EQM at net cost of $4296 - $1400 = $2896. Terrible deal relative to option 2 unless you need the flexibility from purchasing this ticket.

Option 4: fly R via IAH/LAX
Additional value (relative to option 1): must be less than $1400 because it's not all BF and involves a stop. Let's say $1000.
Additional cost $2580 - $604 = $1976.
Additional gain 28,364 miles - 22,328 miles = 6,036 miles. Also a few bonus EQM for the longer trip via LAX: 390 of them. 4 extra EQP. And the $1000 of added enjoyment.
Net gain: 6,036 RDM and a few EQM at a cost of $976 (=$1976 - $1000). Terrible deal.

So, if you value BF at $1400 for the nonstop and $1000 via LAX/IAH, then the only options that make any sense are options 1 and 2. Option 2 is better if you value miles at less than $600/35000 = 1.72 cpm.

If you value BF more, say at $2000 for the nonstop and $1500 via LAX/IAH, all of options 2-4 look better relative to flying coach. The numbers become
Option 2: $1200 net cost vs 35000 miles lost (worth it if you value miles at less than 3.43 cpm)
Option 3: earn a few EQM and RDM at a net cost of $2296, still a terrible deal.
Option 4: earn a few EQM and RDM at a net cost of $476, still a terrible deal.

So, upgrading the nonstop is the only vaguely sensible option if it's available. And if it is, it's a straight question of 'is the added benefit to me worth more than 35000 miles and $800'. Nothing more complex than that.

The last thing to add is: if a standard BF award was available for 75K miles, then that would almost certainly be the best deal for this poster.
Cost (relative to flying coach): 75K miles + 22,328 miles foregone
Gain: $604 saved in cash, plus $1400 added value, or $2004.
Value in cpm: $2004 / 97,328 miles = 2.06cpm

This is usually the ordering of options for me:
standard award > paid coach > upgraded coach > paid J/F
Which is a good rule of thumb if you value miles in the 1.5 cpm range. It depends a little bit on seasonality (the awards look better in high season, and paid J can be a deal at the holidays).

Last edited by yellow77; Jan 17, 08 at 7:59 am
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