Korean Air Skypass has disappeared off of the Chase website as a points transfer partner.
Here are the airlines I currently see listed:
Friday night is the worst time for this, for me, since I can’t reach anyone at Chase in real-time to confirm the meaning of the change.
Korean Air has been one of my favorite uses of Chase points.
- First class awards have been so darned easy to get.
- There are real sweet spots in their Skyteam award chart
- They offer cheap awards to Hawaii
Although they are of course very Korean and their processes for redeeming awards are unique.
If Korean is indeed gone as a Chase transfer partner, I’m personally frustrated. I have 185,000 miles in my Skypass account, and likely need 190,000 for what I’d do with the points (2 one-ways between the US and Southeast Asia in first class).
With additional notice of the change I would have transferred 5000 Chsae points into my Korean account. I should have done that anyway. I don’t usually think of credit card programs devaluing especially without notice, but it certainly happens and has happened and it’s always best to be prepared.
I can use my points for first class to, say, Hong Kong (160,000 miles roundtrip) of course. But getting those 5000 more miles isn’t actually easy. I can credit some Delta flying or some car rentals. I can transfer Hyatt Points over to Korean (ratio is 2.5 to 1, although with a transfer bonus 50,000 Hyatt points nets 25,000 miles). I recently gave up my Korean Air Visa from US Bank.
Regardless, Chase points at a minimum still transfer to:
- United: Star Alliance awards without fuel surcharges
- Singapore Airlines: Much better availability for premium cabin award travel when using Krisflyer miles on Singapore than using miles from partner airline programs. Great for US domestic awards on United as well.
- British Airways: Excellent non-stop short distance awards, such as on American, US Airways, and Alaska — starting at just 4500 points each way.
- Southwest Airlines and Virgin Atlantic, two transfer partners I don’t see myself using but that are strategically useful to some.
- Hyatt: Good hotel value, I’ve transferred here to top off my account for redemptions in the Maldives and Paris and for suite upgrade awards.
- Marriott and Ritz-Carlton and IHG Rewards: These programs tend to be too expensive for redemptions to tempt me to make transfers.
- Amtrak Northeast corridor awards have been useful to me in the past
Though a personal favorite of mine, Korean Air isn’t how most people use their points. United and British Airways and even Hyatt transfers are much more common. I’d probably rather have Singapore than Korean. But it’s a blow, for me, if they’re indeed gone rather than this being a temporary sort of website change. (It’s this uncertainty that holds back harsher words at this point — especially over lack of notice — I do not yet know if this is an actual change.)
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