Your Skywards Questions Answered

Old Feb 2, 11, 7:06 am
  #1  
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Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Near Boulder, CO
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Your Skywards Questions Answered

I am pleased that we are making progress with our ongoing discussions with EK and Skywards. They certainly know who we are, they know of the importance of FT and social media on a bigger scale. And they genuinely do seem interested in listening to their most loyal customers, which many of you are.

Post your questions below, which are Skywards related, and we will attempt to gain clarity and answers for everyone.

Please do not post your Skywards number, ticket number or the fact that last time you flew, you ordered a low salt, vegan meal with cheese and you got a hamburger instead. This is not an avenue to voice a specific complaint.

I know which questions I want to ask. So lets get going. No promises on how quickly we will receive a response.

SIMON
(eightblack)
Moderator-EK Forum

Last edited by eightblack; Feb 10, 11 at 12:44 am
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Old Feb 2, 11, 8:21 am
  #2  
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Dubai
Programs: BA Silver, FB Plat, EK Gold, BonvoyAmb
Posts: 1,990
this would be great to get an offical representative on here and clear up some of our questions--- just a couple for me...

When will there be a "real" 4th tier (not IO) and what will the criteria be?

What is the benefit to earn tier miles over the requalification level? Will threshhold bonuses be introduced?
yyzlhr is offline  
Old Feb 2, 11, 2:02 pm
  #3  
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Southern California
Programs: AA PLT, WN A List, UA Silver, Bonvoy Titanium, Hertz 5*
Posts: 2,252
Questions

Reward program options:
With the growth in members outside of the UAE, will Skywards experiment and offer some Cash plus miles options for those who are in other areas (like from US, etc.)? If there are empty seats, it would be great to see Skywards provide more value.

Or at the very least, offer the reverse direction (to Dubai) Cash plus miles awards to members in those countries.

Partner options:
Will Skywards get a new US airline partner after having terminated Delta (and Continental). I would like EK to reconsider talking to Delta again (since their merger). I think most are okay with EK not joining an alliance (aside from the lack of other options to earn EQM), but rewarding options appear to be shrinking.

Mileage expiration:
Will Skywards consider an option to not expire miles based on activity as this appears to be rather standard among major airlines?

Redeeming miles:
How do most non-UAE customers redeem miles? Partner awards? Upgrades? EK awards (in what classes)? Shopping items?

Earning miles:
Why did EK go to a non-distance based earn system? Has it really reduced the amount of outstanding miles out there? It appears to be more confusion than value? It also is difficult to pick certain fare classes for purchase. When will the booking website be updated to allow users to book by class so that they can spend more for a class that allows more miles in the Flex options than the lower earning tier?

Programme Updates:
Only one program update has been posted on the website in the past 12 months. Why is there not more activity, promotions, etc. and other efforts to use the Skywards program to encourage more travel? Is EK so happy with their load factors that it does not find a need to fill more seats? For example, in the US cities where double-daily has recently been added, the mileage accelerator program is only useful when you are looking for fares, but promoting some bonus miles via email and website for these empty seats would be a lot easier. With many of your promotions, you used to do this very well (Fall Bonus Miles, etc.), but these type of promotions have not been present in the past year.

Thanks,
Rasheed
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Old Feb 2, 11, 2:34 pm
  #4  
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Posts: 278
When will we ever see a EK credit card for the UK?
eshaq786 is offline  
Old Feb 2, 11, 5:48 pm
  #5  
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Posts: 8,009
Can Skywards supply tools on their website to make searching for reward and upgrade reward availability easier?

When do they expect all the bugs to be out the website from the relaunch in January 2010?

Do they actively look for customer input in advance of making changes to the program?

Can they provide discounts/bonuses/promotions for FT members?
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Old Feb 3, 11, 6:45 am
  #6  
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Posts: 123
Hotels & Skywards miles?

If I book an hotel through Emirates - can I earn Skywards Miles on the booking?
Northumberland Lady is offline  
Old Feb 4, 11, 1:45 am
  #7  
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: DXB
Programs: EK Platinum
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Depends on where you book yourself in. See a list here:
http://www.skywards.com/Partners_ata...kinID=3-Hotels
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Old Feb 4, 11, 7:20 am
  #8  
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Posts: 123
Hotels

Hi - Yes I've looked at that list - but I would have thought that if your were booking directly through the Emirates website you would have earned miles for booking with them - regardless of which hotel you book?

Sorry - another question (after looking at the list) - how do I earn Skywards miles when I stay at a hotel on the list if I have not booked it through Emirates? Do I simply supply my Skywards card at check-in?

Thanks again.

Last edited by Northumberland Lady; Feb 4, 11 at 7:26 am
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Old Feb 4, 11, 10:48 am
  #9  
Ambassador: Emirates Airlines
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
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Originally Posted by Northumberland Lady View Post
Sorry - another question (after looking at the list) - how do I earn Skywards miles when I stay at a hotel on the list if I have not booked it through Emirates? Do I simply supply my Skywards card at check-in?
Yes - show your card at check in. Then wait, and wait, and wait!

Sometimes, if the wind is blowing in the right direction, your points will post.

Cheers,
Rick
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Old Feb 5, 11, 3:26 am
  #10  
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Posts: 123
Wink Thanks

Thanks Rick - I get the picture - made me lol!
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Old Feb 5, 11, 10:40 pm
  #11  
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The Upgrade Process Explained.

Ok, I would like to understand just how operational upgrades are processed.

Here's the scenario.

The SIN-MEL flight is full. You know this because either the seat map is zeroed out, or EF shows no fares available in Y in any fare bucket. Or because when you checked in, the friendly agent told you so!

If you're a Gold Skywards member, my experience has always been that the op-up has been determined before you get to the airport. In the majority of cases.

So just how does the person controlling the flight determine who receives an op-up?

Lets say EK need to find 12 more Y seats. J class on a 777 has 42 seats and F has 8.

Assume there is plenty of space in J (ie more than 12). So the flight controller goes looking thru the manifest and sees 15 Golds on the flight. For simplicity sake, lets assume all those Golds are in Y.

Does he/she look at the list and simply select alphabetically, does fare come into it (ie flex versus saver, and then what specific fare was paid), does tier miles YTD come into play, does tier miles since joining come into it, does the recent "member score" come into it?

I've been op-upped on the cheapest saver fares before.

And then follow the same argument, for when they need to move down the tier levels and look at Silvers etc.

I suppose at the end of the day, members like me would like to know what criteria the airline uses and what strategies can/could be employed to increase your chances of receiving an op-up.

I'm not unhappy mind you with the current state of affairs. Far from it in fact. And the thing that I am sure of, if you really do what to increase your chances, then pick flights with high loads and make sure you maintain status. That assumes you can be somewhat flexible with your itinerary, which thankfully I can.
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Old Feb 6, 11, 3:36 pm
  #12  
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Delhi
Programs: Emirates gold *alliance silver jet airways platinum tridentprivilege gold.
Posts: 1,815
Dear Eightblack

I have noticed liberal op ups from Y to J but a full J cabin (due to op ups from Y) and an almost empty F cabin. As I have complained earlier on other threds this squeezes paying J passengers when it happens repeatedly as it does on the sectors I fly --- you can end up with a middle seat on a 77W So a related question... are there different criteria for J to F op ups?
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Old Feb 6, 11, 4:04 pm
  #13  
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Originally Posted by rathin100 View Post
Dear Eightblack

I have noticed liberal op ups from Y to J but a full J cabin (due to op ups from Y) and an almost empty F cabin. As I have complained earlier on other threds this squeezes paying J passengers when it happens repeatedly as it does on the sectors I fly --- you can end up with a middle seat on a 77W So a related question... are there different criteria for J to F op ups?
rathin100

Firstly, and I say this tongue in cheek (ie in a joking fashion). No Gold member of Skywards should ever end up in a middle seat - not someone who is a member of FT anyway. You have access to too many tools to ever sit there!

And if you do get allocated a middle seat, you need to adopt the FT mantra. If the first person wont get you what you need or want, go ask another person. ie if the contract gate agent at check in gives you a middle seat, go to the lounge and have them change it.

I have never sat in a middle seat in J (and never will). Actually that's not quite true. I did sit there once when I was travelling with my parents, but that's because they are both useless and couldnt figure out how to operate the IFE.

And no, as far as I know, there is no different criteria for J to F, with the only point being that catering may come into play.

For example, EK would probably analyse loads carefully and say that with high loads in Y, the likelihood of op ups to J is going to be required, so would cater for a full J cabin (even if only half booked).

But if no one was booked in F, then they probably wouldn't cater for F. The last 2 times I was op-upped from J to F, they provided a J meal and menus, wine list etc.

Good question. Excellent in fact.
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Old Feb 6, 11, 4:33 pm
  #14  
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
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Originally Posted by eightblack View Post
rathin100

Firstly, and I say this tongue in cheek (ie in a joking fashion). No Gold member of Skywards should ever end up in a middle seat - not someone who is a member of FT anyway. You have access to too many tools to ever sit there!

And if you do get allocated a middle seat, you need to adopt the FT mantra. If the first person wont get you what you need or want, go ask another person. ie if the contract gate agent at check in gives you a middle seat, go to the lounge and have them change it.

I have never sat in a middle seat in J (and never will). Actually that's not quite true. I did sit there once when I was travelling with my parents, but that's because they are both useless and couldnt figure out how to operate the IFE.



And no, as far as I know, there is no different criteria for J to F, with the only point being that catering may come into play.

For example, EK would probably analyse loads carefully and say that with high loads in Y, the likelihood of op ups to J is going to be required, so would cater for a full J cabin (even if only half booked).

But if no one was booked in F, then they probably wouldn't cater for F. The last 2 times I was op-upped from J to F, they provided a J meal and menus, wine list etc.

Good question. Excellent in fact.

Eightblack what you say is true.. but here are the three times it happened all 77W

(1) Reach gate in a rush with my e boarding pass not having looked at seat allocation Find myself booked in a middle seat with 2 colleagues on either side (same PNR) Very mad. being colleagues cannot push them out...J full. Bingo...later find out J WAS empty BUT 9 upgrades SO no vacancy, so sorry you are last one boarding welcome back!.

Thats what I mean by squeeze... if I had been put in an F seat with whatever menu fine but they did not do that (same applikes below).

(2) (annoyed me for 3 minutes) IFE and seat recline (lie flat) not working cos my seat electronics has packed in, sorry only seat we have is middle take that or else stay upright for 14 hours with one magazine and a newspaper, so sorry and welcome back.. sorry will not op up to F although only 2 pax in suites
Mid flight chat reveals 7 upgrades so no seat!

Thats what I mean by squeeze


(3) (really annoyed me for 30 seconds) In aisle seat right side couple comes in, lady in middle seat her ten year old in window next to me.... old ladies on either side of the ladies middle seat, cabin crew lady and child asking me can you move pleeeese? OK I could have said no..but...you know? Again Cabin crew tell me flight was half full now full due to upgrades but no going to sit in F thank you very much for co-operating now sod off to your middle seat

Again squeeze


All above paid flights No 1 ex BKK No 2 ex DXB to GRU No 3 ex GRU

So, do ask the gods about policy?
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Old Feb 6, 11, 4:49 pm
  #15  
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See comments below. In red.

Originally Posted by rathin100 View Post
Eightblack what you say is true.. but here are the three times it happened all 77W

(1) Reach gate in a rush with my e boarding pass not having looked at seat allocation Find myself booked in a middle seat with 2 colleagues on either side (same PNR) Very mad. being colleagues cannot push them out...J full. Bingo...later find out J WAS empty BUT 9 upgrades SO no vacancy, so sorry you are last one boarding welcome back!.

Ok, I'm sympathetic, but this rests with you. I get that you were in a rush, but I know I still would have checked. And I know from memory what the middle seats are (in terms of letter designation). Sad but true.

Thats what I mean by squeeze... if I had been put in an F seat with whatever menu fine but they did not do that (same applikes below).

(2) (annoyed me for 3 minutes) IFE and seat recline (lie flat) not working cos my seat electronics has packed in, sorry only seat we have is middle take that or else stay upright for 14 hours with one magazine and a newspaper, so sorry and welcome back.. sorry will not op up to F although only 2 pax in suites
Mid flight chat reveals 7 upgrades so no seat!

Thats what I mean by squeeze

Ok, this is where I would have stood my ground and insisted for the onboard supervisor. They are the only ones with the authority to move you to F, which by the sounds of it, they should have done. If it happens again, stand firm. And I definitely would have followed up when I got back on the ground and insisted on some form of compensation.

(3) (really annoyed me for 30 seconds) In aisle seat right side couple comes in, lady in middle seat her ten year old in window next to me.... old ladies on either side of the ladies middle seat, cabin crew lady and child asking me can you move pleeeese? OK I could have said no..but...you know? Again Cabin crew tell me flight was half full now full due to upgrades but no going to sit in F thank you very much for co-operating now sod off to your middle seat

Again squeeze

This is called being a nice guy. And good karma. You did an honorable thing. I'm a parent, so I would have probably done the same. And yes, it would have been nice for the EK staff to recognise your actions, but they didnt. I find drinking heavily helps me overcome these minor inconveniences.


All above paid flights No 1 ex BKK No 2 ex DXB to GRU No 3 ex GRU

So, do ask the gods about policy?
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