Bits ‘n Pieces for June 21, 2012

Here’s this morning’s roundup of frequent flyer news you can use, should use, or might merely be passingly interested in knowing:

  • Hertz is waiving under 25 year old driver fees through September 30 with coupon (PC #) 144314. The Hertz website says that the charge may still appear on your reservation but will be deducted at time of rental.

  • Avianca, TACA, and Copa join the Star Alliance today giving Star much better coverage in South America. The best bet with Delta miles is Aeromexico, Star has gotten much better now and clearly makes United and US Airways miles a better choice than Delta miles. But American miles are still king for South America travel given American’s own award availability and that of oneworld partner LAN. Oneworld is expected to be strengthened at the expense of Star, the combined LAN and TAM (LATAM) is widely believed to become a oneworld carrier in the future, pulling TAM out of the Star Alliance.

  • Delta isn’t the only airline going after Frontier Airlines frequent flyers since that airline has all but pulled out of Milwaukee. Southwest is offering A-List status (and Airtran A+ Rewards Elite status) to elite members of the Frontier Early Returns program living in Wisconsin.

  • Very Good Points shares her experiences with my award booking service. She has a first class award using US Airways miles to fly to Singapore and Thailand on Air China, Thai Airways, and Singapore Airlines in first class.

  • Hilton’s third quarter promotion is double points during the week and triple points on the weekend, registration required. Triple points is good, not exciting enough to cause me to make stays just for the points but rich enough to feel good about if I’m going to stay in a Hilton anyway (and possibly to choose Hilton versus a chain without a decent promotion running). There are, sadly, tons of hotels that are not participating in the promotion.

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community Milepoint.com, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary ┬╗

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Comments

  1. How is Air China first class? As far as I know their economy is the worst among NH OZ UA AC and the old CO.

  2. Frontier stopped it’s charity donation program, so you can’t do the Southwest/Wisconsin thing anymore. My guess is due to something in their contract to sell Delta their customers that caused this.

  3. Gary,

    On the award itin you booked to SE Asia, I have a question –

    How come USAir did not charge 160K miles since the highest class is F and the longest distance you go on the award portion is SouthEast Asia? What am I missing?

    Does it mean that since N-Asia is only is F they charge 120K and let you off with J class upto SE Asia?

    Can you please explain?
    Thanks!

  4. @Apu – often US AIrways will price awards based on city of arrival in a new region, it’s not something you’re entitled to or can count on but sometimes you luck out. Largely a function that their agents don’t usually know much about geography.

  5. Gary,

    This is an impressive itinerary. One thing I don’t understand though is how you got stopovers of greater than 24 hours in Singapore, Malaysia, Cambodia, Thailand and Vietnam. My understanding was you’re only allowed 1 stopover with US Airways on an award.
    Any response would be much appreciated.

  6. @MoeSafer as the blog post suggested, the destination was Singapore and stopover in Bangkok on the return, the other flights were booked separately.

  7. Thanks Gary, I should first test the agent’s GEO before I ask them to book my award ticket ­čÖé

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