I’ve never said “your mileage may vary” as much as I have about working with Air France KLM’s Flying Blue phone agents. You get different stories, different levels of understanding, and inconsistently-applied requirements.
In the past I have had to fax written authorization to book a domestic connection in coach on a business class award (they would have gladly booked the award without the coach connection, but if I wanted that coach flight included for free I had to fax my written permission for the downgrade). And I’ve been told that Africa awards had to be ticketed in person at the airport. Of course different agents, different requirements. (Hang up, call back.)
But there’s something new — a minor improvement worth noting — that’s come up in recent days dealing with them through my award booking service.
In recent days we’ve been told that you can modify or cancel an award within 24 hours without charge.
Here’s why this is worth knowing.
- Air France won’t hold awards under most circumstances, but they are an instant transfer partner of American Express Membership Rewards sometimes even with transfer bonuses).
- They do add fuel surcharges to (most) awards where a paid ticket would include such a fee, but they also offer a substantially greater amount of award inventory on Air France flights than Delta has access to.
- They regularly offer 50% off ‘promo’ awards where you can fly to and from a given city in the US (or elsewhere in the world) and anywhere in Europe.
- One-way awards are available at half the cost of roundtrip.
The Flying Blue program isn’t one of my favorites, but their online booking system is reasonably good and they’ve at least reduced fuel surcharges compared to 18 months ago (though they’ve also increased point requirements). And anything they can do to improve the booking process is certainly welcome!
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