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New DL Double or Triple QM Promo in the works? AA fires first shot

New DL Double or Triple QM Promo in the works? AA fires first shot

Old Sep 3, 09, 6:52 am
  #61  
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Originally Posted by pitbrian View Post
Sorry my mistake- meant they have an easy challenge- $200 and 10,000 Miles/EQP in 3 months.
Got you. I would note, however, that this promo won't help with the challenge, since it is double EQMs, not EQPs.
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Old Sep 3, 09, 7:33 am
  #62  
 
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delta would get quite a bit more business from me if they did this
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Old Sep 3, 09, 8:12 am
  #63  
 
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Just a quick FYI

UA just fired the second shot...


http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/unite...mpw059-10.html
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Old Sep 3, 09, 8:23 am
  #64  
 
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Originally Posted by mooper View Post
Any inflation is *relative*inflation, meaning that any two SkyMiles members with substantially identical flying and bonus registration patterns will end up in the same competitive position for upgrades. For example, two SM members who would have otherwise ended the year ~45K MQM might find themselves ~55K MQM with GM status instead, because of this promo. However, they will no longer be competing with other SMs in that tier and will instead be competing in the GM tier. In turn, many members who would have otherwise been GMs might become PMs instead, removing themselves from the GM pool. In the end, the "inflation" can only hurt those who fail to sign up and/or otherwise have activity timing patterns *relative to those who accumulate annually in the same range* that skew their earnings in a disadvantageous way.

It is also important to remember that even if your *relative* position compared to other Medallion members falls because of a promo, it would have no impact on fee waivers, bonus RDMs and other threshold awards, and several of the other benefits not dependent on how many others receive them.
I must beg to differ - think about numbers and the levels - in particular the massive gap between Plat and Diamond. The EQM bonuses will push a larger portion of the formerly Gold population into Plat as the gap to cover is only 25K. However, the gap from Plat to Diamond is 50K which is much harder to bridge - even with an EQM promo. So while a lot of what would have been Golds would become Plats with a 25K boost, the same 25K boost won't do Plats as much good. I grant its probable that Plats would get more of a boost on average than a typical Gold but I doubt the average proportion would be high enough to make up a gap twice the size. My belief is that the combined effect of these promos will create a sort of rectangular curve where Silver thru Plat get inflated at nearly even proportions but the effect will drop off significantly at the Diamond level. A Plat flyer like me that flies a lot but does so on cheapest fare (corp policy) will not do well for EUA in such an environment.

One alternative might be the Reserve card since it boosts your EUA standing but I'm not sure if its enough to overcome this probable effect. I need to check if the Reserve card puts you on top of the level or just on the top of your level/fare grouping.
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Old Sep 3, 09, 8:51 am
  #65  
 
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Originally Posted by pmaddock View Post
One alternative might be the Reserve card since it boosts your EUA standing but I'm not sure if its enough to overcome this probable effect. I need to check if the Reserve card puts you on top of the level or just on the top of your level/fare grouping.
Per Jeff Robertson (in a post a while ago about the Reserve card), the Reserve card only puts you at the top of your level/fare grouping. In other words, if two PMs where both flying on T fares, the one with the Reserve card would be eligible for an upgrade first. A PM flying on a U fare would trump them both.
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Old Sep 3, 09, 9:14 am
  #66  
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Originally Posted by pmaddock View Post
My belief is that the combined effect of these promos will create a sort of rectangular curve where Silver thru Plat get inflated at nearly even proportions but the effect will drop off significantly at the Diamond level. A Plat flyer like me that flies a lot but does so on cheapest fare (corp policy) will not do well for EUA in such an environment.
I think it is more complicated than that. If we assume that the flying is spread evenly over the year, then a 3-month promotion would push folks this way:

- PMs that would otherwise earn 100k MQMs or more would be bumped to DM
- GMs that would otherwise earn 60k MQMs or more would be bumped to PM
- FOs that would otherwise earn 40k MQMs or more would be bumped to GM
- No status folks that would otherwise earn 20k MQMs or more would be bumped to FO

As a % of the base thresholds, it is actually toughest to get the FO to GM bump from this program. Unless FOs are more heavily weighted at the upper end of the FO range, we should expect to see the least inflation in the GM range. FO is tougher to determine, but it at least isn't a clear candidate for excessive inflation. The PM inflation should be the worst, but not by leaps and bounds over DM inflation.

Of course, any lumpiness in earnings could skew the numbers, but what are the chances that such lumpiness would actually be significant when taken across the entire elite population? Even if we assumed that there was lumpiness, I would think you would see spikes in summer and that the spike would be most pronounced among the FOs and non-status pax, further diminishing FO and GM inflation. I would think that, as a whole, the PM and DM populations would be the least lumpy.
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Old Sep 3, 09, 9:23 am
  #67  
 
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Originally Posted by pbarnette View Post
I think it is more complicated than that. If we assume that the flying is spread evenly over the year, then a 3-month promotion would push folks this way:

- PMs that would otherwise earn 100k MQMs or more would be bumped to DM
- GMs that would otherwise earn 60k MQMs or more would be bumped to PM
- FOs that would otherwise earn 40k MQMs or more would be bumped to GM
- No status folks that would otherwise earn 20k MQMs or more would be bumped to FO

As a % of the base thresholds, it is actually toughest to get the FO to GM bump from this program. Unless FOs are more heavily weighted at the upper end of the FO range, we should expect to see the least inflation in the GM range. FO is tougher to determine, but it at least isn't a clear candidate for excessive inflation. The PM inflation should be the worst, but not by leaps and bounds over DM inflation.

Of course, any lumpiness in earnings could skew the numbers, but what are the chances that such lumpiness would actually be significant when taken across the entire elite population? Even if we assumed that there was lumpiness, I would think you would see spikes in summer and that the spike would be most pronounced among the FOs and non-status pax, further diminishing FO and GM inflation. I would think that, as a whole, the PM and DM populations would be the least lumpy.
I think FO will be less saturated next year because non-Medallions did not receive the 5/10/15k MQM boost. So a lot of current FOs will reach GM/PM easier, but most non-Medallions will have to work just as hard to get FO (in an environment where a lot of people are scaling back on personal and biz travel). I am going to venture that most non-Medallions did not benefit on the YBMHQK Double/Triple bonus earlier this year. I personally didn't because I had no business travel during that period and book my leisure travel early enough to avoid the higher fares.
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Old Sep 3, 09, 9:29 am
  #68  
 
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Originally Posted by pmaddock View Post
I must beg to differ - think about numbers and the levels...
I was relaying a mathematical fact, but perhaps I could have been more clear. The impact may only be relative *on the whole*. You can see this by imagining what would happen if DL announced that on Dec 31st, 11:59PM, they would double all 2009 MQMs in everyone's account, regardless of what time of the year they were earned. Because there would be no advantage to time-shifting activity, no one could gain a relative advantage. Despite a doubling "inflation" in the absolute quantities of MQMs, there would be no overall net change in competition for upgrades. There would, however, be a huge increase in the total amount of benefits (fee waivers and the like) doled out by DL.

Because, unlike in my hypothetical scenario, there is a time period involved, members may create a *relative* advantage or disadvantage for themselves by timing their activities to coincide more or less with the promo time period than their average peer.
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Old Sep 3, 09, 9:48 am
  #69  
 
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Keep in mind that all of your scenarios of elite inflation assume frequent flyers are flying as frequently now as they were, say, a year ago. But if that were the case no airline would be running these types of promotions. I would guess these EQM deals, applied to a lower amount of actual flying, will yield a total elite population not much bigger than before.
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Old Sep 3, 09, 9:54 am
  #70  
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Originally Posted by pitbrian View Post
I think FO will be less saturated next year because non-Medallions did not receive the 5/10/15k MQM boost. So a lot of current FOs will reach GM/PM easier, but most non-Medallions will have to work just as hard to get FO (in an environment where a lot of people are scaling back on personal and biz travel). I am going to venture that most non-Medallions did not benefit on the YBMHQK Double/Triple bonus earlier this year. I personally didn't because I had no business travel during that period and book my leisure travel early enough to avoid the higher fares.
The math still favors PM seeing the most inflation and GM the least, at least for the 5 & 10k bonuses. At the 15k level, the order goes PM (easiest), GM, DM.

Originally Posted by Stripe View Post
Keep in mind that all of your scenarios of elite inflation assume frequent flyers are flying as frequently now as they were, say, a year ago. But if that were the case no airline would be running these types of promotions. I would guess these EQM deals, applied to a lower amount of actual flying, will yield a total elite population not much bigger than before.
Agree 10,000%. I am certain that the airlines have targets for the numbers (or at least %s) of elites. If they were hitting those targets, they would not be doing this. As we all know that AA has a far, far better elite system than DL and that everyone is jumping ship, we can only assume that, since it is AA leading the charge, that things must be really dire for DL.

Last edited by pbarnette; Sep 3, 09 at 10:00 am
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Old Sep 3, 09, 9:59 am
  #71  
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Come on Delta. I need the MQMs and I might give you some money for a MR if you come through for me.
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Old Sep 3, 09, 10:03 am
  #72  
 
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Does this make me sound like a jerk, and be honest: If you are not flying as much this year, you shouldn't be Plat/Diamond/whatever. WHY do they need to give it away? It is an elite benefit created for an elite level of flying. There are years I didn't make Plat, and I settled for Silver and Gold on NW. THAT is what I earned. Why can't it be a pure program? Sorry Johnny, some teams do lose....everyone doesn't get a blue ribbon in life.
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Old Sep 3, 09, 10:10 am
  #73  
 
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Originally Posted by bubbashow View Post
Does this make me sound like a jerk, and be honest: If you are not flying as much this year, you shouldn't be Plat/Diamond/whatever. WHY do they need to give it away? It is an elite benefit created for an elite level of flying. There are years I didn't make Plat, and I settled for Silver and Gold on NW. THAT is what I earned. Why can't it be a pure program? Sorry Johnny, some teams do lose....everyone doesn't get a blue ribbon in life.
That model makes sense when planes are full..but I think most major airlines are looking at very bleak fall bookings and AA/UA have decided double EQM promos would stimulate bookings (at a relatively low cost). In the airlines eyes, the more people flying to attain higher status, the better.
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Old Sep 3, 09, 10:29 am
  #74  
 
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Originally Posted by bubbashow View Post
Does this make me sound like a jerk, and be honest: If you are not flying as much this year, you shouldn't be Plat/Diamond/whatever. WHY do they need to give it away? It is an elite benefit created for an elite level of flying. There are years I didn't make Plat, and I settled for Silver and Gold on NW. THAT is what I earned. Why can't it be a pure program? Sorry Johnny, some teams do lose....everyone doesn't get a blue ribbon in life.
No - I don't think it makes you sound like a jerk - just a purist.

Any way you look at it now though the cat is completely out of the bag - the relationship of EQM to BIS flying has been broken. Although there have been occassional EQM giveaways in the past - nothing even remotely compares to this year. We've got credit card sign-up regular and promo offers, the possibility of multiple EQM X times promos, amazing gift bonuses, and hotel bonuses. Before this year I remember only one EQM promo of any significance - the UA matched 2x back in 2005. This year its off the charts. EQM is now following the path of RDM.

Now here's an intersting question - what do you think an EQM is actually worth to the airlines? Clearly they sell them in some way to the Airlines and the Hotels so I'm curious what they are getting for them.

Last edited by pmaddock; Sep 3, 09 at 10:31 am Reason: typo
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Old Sep 3, 09, 10:35 am
  #75  
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Originally Posted by pmaddock View Post
Now here's an intersting question - what do you think an EQM is actually worth to the airlines? Clearly they sell them in some way to the Airlines and the Hotels so I'm curious what they are getting for them.
If they record them on their balance sheet, then I would guess it is immaterial, since I've only seen discussions about the accounting for RDMs in the financials.

Last edited by pbarnette; Sep 3, 09 at 10:51 am
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