Alitalia is being restructured (again..) because Etihad is the latest investor to decide it’s done losing money on the transatlantic debacle. Alitalia’s frequent flyer program is a separate company, spun off so that Etihad could give Alitalia more cash and so that Etihad could exercise more control all without running afoul of foreign ownership rules.
And the Millemiglia frequent flyer program is one of the real dumpster fires of loyalty. And not just for doubling partner award prices overnight either. Some loyalty programs expire miles. Alitalia expires the program. Everyone’s mileage goes away at the end of the year when the program resets. (They run promotions to let you earn back the miles you had previously earned.)
Copyright: jvdwolf / 123RF Stock Photo
Alitalia moved to a revenue-based program for 2018. But it’s redemption pricing I’m most interested in because Alitalia is a transfer partner of American Express Membership Rewards, because they used to have excellent award pricing (albeit frustrating customer service), and because they’re expected to become a Barclays transfer partner later this month.
And Alitalia is devaluing their award charts again. What’s amazing is they’re also telling us that we can only rely on this new pricing through the end of the year.
The award chart for August through December. I’m almost speechless.
- Some intra-Europe redemptions get less expensive
- By raising the price of many roundtrip awards they’re eliminating the premium for one way awards
For US-based customers one way economy awards to Europe stay the same, while roundtrip economy goes from 50,000 miles to 60,000 (20% increase).
Business class one way goes from 48,000 miles to 70,000 miles, a 46% increase. Business class roundtrip goes from 80,000 to 140,0000 miles, a 75% increase. And of course Alitalia adds fuel surcharges to awards.
(HT: Ben J.)