Free USAirways Upgrade Certificates

Posted on: February 29th, 2004 by: Gary Leff

As noted before, but I’ve recently confirmed that this still works — when you sign up for USAirways small business rewards program, the welcome packet comes with (2) space available upgrade certificates useful for North American flights.

Gearing up for Sydney Service

Posted on: February 28th, 2004 by: Gary Leff

Hawaiian Airlines is now selling tickets for its new Sydney flights which commence in May. Prices start at$755 plus tax roundtrip from Honolulu to Sydney and flights are offered four days a week.

I discussed prospects for this service when it was announced in January.

Points for Your Pooch

Posted on: February 28th, 2004 by: Gary Leff

As I reported last month Japan Air Lines has a new reward program for pets. Apparently they think it’s one of a kind (subscription required)

    The JAL Pet Club, as it will be called, will allow consumers to exchange points for in-flight cage rentals, pet airfares and presents for their pets.


    “We are unaware,” a JAL official told the Japan Times, “of any similar services targeting pets offered by other airlines, Japanese or foreign.”

Perhaps they should read this website? As I’ve written before Continental, Virgin, and El Al all offer pet reward programs. Several hotels offer pet loyalty programs as well.

New Reward Card

Posted on: February 28th, 2004 by: Gary Leff

The March issue of Inside Flyer (subscription required) notes a new mileage earning credit card

    Middle East Airlines and Lebanon’s Banque Audi have launched a new mileage-earning credit card. The Banque Audi Cedar Miles Silver card earns one mile per $1.50 spent, and the Gold card, one mile per dollar. New cardholders receive a welcome bonus of 3,000 miles, an extended grace period, travel insurance, life insurance and insurance against lost luggage when the card is used for ticket purchases, as well as purchase protection

(Emphasis mine)

This seems like an important benefit for anyone carrying a card issued in Lebanon and earning miles on Middle East Airlines.

African Airline Partnerships

Posted on: February 28th, 2004 by: Gary Leff

The Air France-KLM merger has significant implications for African carriers.

The nascent Wings alliance is falling away, and being folded into Skyteam — so that Air France and KLM will be teamed up with Delta, Continental, Northwest, Aeromexico, Alitalia, Korean, and Czech.

KLM controls Kenya Airways and Delta partners with South African. Both could potentially join Skyteam.

In the meantime, the rest of Africa’s airlines are a mess on their own.

One more indication that China is moving inexorably towards capitalism

Posted on: February 28th, 2004 by: Gary Leff

Air China, which codeshares with more than 60 carriers worldwide, is planning to go public.

The flag carrier of the People’s Republic of China will recognize private ownership. So much for collective ownership over the means of production.

Best-ever bonus for Marriott Visa signup

Posted on: February 28th, 2004 by: Gary Leff

Gary Steiger of Free Frequent Flyer Miles notes:

    20,000 points for first use. Call (800) 897-7240. I am unable to find this offer on line. The phone number is dedicated to this offer only.

The fee is waived for the first year, and 20,000 Marriott points are good for about 5,000 airline miles or a night at a mid-level (category 4) hotel.

Great Flower Value

Posted on: February 27th, 2004 by: Gary Leff

FTD.com is offering 30 United miles per dollar spent.

Northwest Refer a Friend Bonus Miles

Posted on: February 24th, 2004 by: Gary Leff

Northwest has a new “member get member” promotion — and you don’t even have to refer someone that is new to the Northwest Worldperks program.


Refer a friend that has not earned WorldPerks miles for air travel since January 1, 2003. You’ll earn up to 3500 bonus miles for each friend who travels by June 30th, and they’ll each earn up to 3500 bonus miles per roundtrip they take by June 30th.

If you’re going to be flying Northwest or KLM (or Alaska Airlines with a Northwest flight code) before June 30th — and you haven’t credited flights to your Northwest account in awhile — and you’d like us both to earn some bonus miles, drop me a note with your first and last name and Northwest frequent flyer number.

Naturally you can team up with a buddy instead of me for this promotion.

New Hawaii Award Option

Posted on: February 23rd, 2004 by: Gary Leff

United just announced Chicago-Honululu service beginning June 3rd.

Since the flight won’t even be bookable until February 24th, none of the award seats on this flight have been taken yet.

Tomorrow is likely the time to have at it!

Chinatown buses

Posted on: February 22nd, 2004 by: Gary Leff

The New York Times carries a piece on the Chinatown buses that run service from New York to Boston and DC for as little as $10 each way. They’re safe and cheap and run on a razor-thin margin.

How the candidates travel

Posted on: February 22nd, 2004 by: Gary Leff

Fundrace.org has compiled date on each of the president candidates’ choice of airline and hotel.

The most prolific hotel spender in Al Sharpton, who prefers the Four Seasons and runs up an average bill of $3598.

George W. Bush prefers Marriott, running up an average bill of $1342. Howard Dean is also a frequent Marriott guest, though he presumably isn’t racking up as many points as his average bill is just $176. Kucinich, Edwards, and Lieberman are all Holiday Inn men.

The single largest hotel bill, though, belongs to Bush — he spent $132,500 at a Sheraton in Manhattan on July 1.

Bush and Dean also have the same taste in air travel, with each campaign running up over 100 bills with United.

Kucinich, Clark, Edwards, and Lieberman all favor Southwest.

Of course the highest bills are all from private flights — except for Dennis Kucinich’s first class ticket on United.

(Based on available data on February 22, 2004.)

Mmm… breakfast

Posted on: February 21st, 2004 by: Gary Leff

Get $1 off a box of Cheerios.

American Airlines Upgrade Changes

Posted on: February 19th, 2004 by: Gary Leff

American announced unlimited complimentary domestic upgrades for Executive Platinum (top-tier) elite flyers beginning March 18th.

All others will see a reduced price for purchased 500 mile domestic upgrade coupons.

Delta offers a choice of bonuses

Posted on: February 19th, 2004 by: Gary Leff

Delta is offering a choice of rewards for flying a minimum of 5,000 “qualifying miles” by May 31.

There are lots of terms and conditions, but the rewards range up to a 200% mileage bonus on the following three months of flights or a year’s club membership.

Elite Partner Offers

Posted on: February 19th, 2004 by: Gary Leff

Partner offers for USAirways top level elites are online. USAirways sends the link to their Chairman’s Preferred members — but it seems as though anyone can take advantage of them.

United referral bonus

Posted on: February 19th, 2004 by: Gary Leff

United has a new member-get-member referral link valid through June 30th — sign up friends or colleagues for Mileage Plus and if they travel on qualifying fares through the middle of the year you’ll both get bonus miles.

500 Free American Airlines miles

Posted on: February 19th, 2004 by: Gary Leff

Signup for InFone and receive 500 American Airlines miles. You do have to provide a credit card, but there’s no charge to signup and no charge unless you use the service.


(Thanks to Gary Steiger’s Free Frequent Flyer Miles for the pointer.)

Earn Upgrades for Buying United Tickets

Posted on: February 16th, 2004 by: Gary Leff

Register to earn a confirmed domestic upgrade certificate for every $1000 of travel you book at United.com by March 5th and fly by March 31st.

The real meaning of no-frills

Posted on: February 16th, 2004 by: Gary Leff

In the US, successful low cost carriers are adding amenities. JetBlue’s coach product is probably the best in the sky. Airtran offers business class and ATA is adding it. Entertainment and nice seats are commong among discount carriers (except with Southwest, but word is that even they are evaluating it), even to the extent it isn’t available from the majors.

In Europe, discount means no frills. Discounter Ryanair is taking this to new extremes.

    Ryanair has confirmed it is taking “no-frills” flying a stage further by ordering a fleet of planes without reclining seats or window blinds.


    The budget airline could make savings of more than

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