ChangeDetection.com is a really useful website, I use it to track changes to pages like US Airways Grand Slam (I kept hoping they’d bring it back, and would get an early heads up if they changed the page which hosted it).
I’ve also been using it to track if and when Alaska Airlines awards come back to Icelandair’s Saga Club program.
You could straight up buy miles and redeem them on Alaska for first class to Hawaii for about $350.
Icelandair was aware of the deal. Their award chart was very very good, 30,000 miles roundtrip in first class, and it was cheap to buy miles in part because of weakness in their country’s currency. And if that wasn’t enough they were even running a buy miles bonus.
But the redemption costs must have begun really hurting because they withdrew the deal by withdrawing all Alaska Airlines redemptions from the program itself even though Alaska remains a partner.
Since the partner relationship does exist, I’ve been assuming that at some point redemption options would return to the program. Best guess is that they will be much more expensive than they were in the past. But there’s been some non-zero chance that they wouldn’t be too expensive for them to be useful.
So I have ChangeDetection.com trawling the site, waiting to let me know when the details change again.
In the meantime, I like how straightforward and positive they are about the whole affair:
Icelandair Saga Club offered a special redemption offer with Alaska Airlines for all our members, which was widely and greatly received. Hundreds of bookings were made and a lot of new members signed up for the Program.
The offer is now temporary unavailable and we thank all of you for your interest in our Program.
Yes yes, it was ‘widely and greatly received’ and no doubt a lot of new members (who will likely never fly Icelandair) signed up for the program. Indeed, like the good old days of british midland, many will wonder whether Icelandair is just a frequent flyer program…?