READER QUESTIONS: Easy Hilton HHonors Gold, Using Aeroplan Miles Towards Tuition, Using VS Miles On SA Flights, Le Club Accorhotels Platinum With Minimum Effort, Buying IHG Rewards Club Points, Hilton Hawaiian Village Awards & Southwest Flight Delay But Left On Time?

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Here are seven reader questions from the past week (so many good questions coming in!) that I have decided to reply to publicly. You can always email me, leave a note or private message on Facebook, or Tweet me with your questions.

Reader Questions & Comments June 27 2015

Note that I can shorten the emails and edit them for clarity. I always remove the personal information of both the reader and front line employees. If there are managers involved, I may leave their names intact, however.

Rosalyn’s Question About Getting HHonors Gold Status?

I am looking for inexpensive way to get Hilton HHonors Gold Status.  I am Silver Status now. Thank you very much for any suggestion!

Hilton HHonors Gold status only requires four stays within 90 days if you sign up for any of the fast track offers that I have written about here. Even award stays qualify. You can read more about the MVP fast track offer here.

There are also credit cards in some markets that come with Hilton HHonors Gold status.

Zeala’s Question Using Aeroplan Miles Towards Tuition Payments?

Is this good use for Aeroplan miles?

The following text is from the Vice article that you can access here.

The Higher Ed program works by converting 35,000 Aeroplan miles to $250 that can be used toward tuition, rent, textbooks, meal plans, and even student cards on certain campuses. Anyone can donate their points to a student, and so, students are encouraged to ask their parents and grandparents to donate. To put this in perspective, however, you earn about one mile per dollar spent with many plans and participating brands.

Generally speaking, airlines miles are most valuable when used the towards airline tickets. If you use them towards tuition payment, the value is 0.71 cents (US) per Aeroplan mile. Personally, I wouldn’t consider this reasonable use of miles.

READ MORE: READER QUESTIONS: Combining Hilton Promotions, Best Oneworld Alliance Program To Earn Miles & Status, Airberlin EC 261/2004 Compensation, Hilton 5,000 Bonus Points Offer, Transferring Points Between Hotel Loyalty Programs, Star Alliance Status Match From AA & GOL Smiles Ticketing Issue

William’s Question Using Virgin Atlantic Flying Club Miles For South African Airways Flight?

Can you tell me whether you can use V Flying Club miles on South African Airways flights between JNB and MUN? If so, how would one go about booking these?

MUN? That is an airport in Venezuela. You probably meant Mauritius or some other airport served by South African Airways.

You should be able to spend your Virgin Atlantic Flying Club miles on all South African Airways flights that have award availability.

Virgin Atlantic has, however, removed most of the partner award charts from its website. Seems that the only way to find out the number of miles required for economy and business class redemption is to give them a call.

Andrews Question Getting Le Club Accorhotels Platinum Status With Minimum Effort?

Really keen to get hold of a platinum Le Club card with minimum effort.

Opportunities to get Le Club Accorhotels Platinum status with just handful of stays tend to come and go.

Last year, there was a promo for 5,000 Aeroplan miles per stay that allowed you to earn Platinum in just 3 stays (all the points count and miles are first deposited as points to your account). Just follow up the posts here on LoyaltyLobby and act when the next opportunity comes up.

READER QUESTIONS: READER QUESTIONS: Canceled Enterprise Car Rentals, Where’s Marriott Summer Promo, Taxes & Fees On Hyatt Awards, Australia To North America Using AA Miles, British Airways Status Match & Marriott Taipei Opening Delay

Leo’s Question Buying IHG Rewards Club Points And If They Count Towards Status?

I’m trying to understand whether those points http://loyaltylobby.com/2015/06/16/ihg-rewards-club-buy-gift-points-100-bonus-june-15-30-2015/ are applicable for Gold/Platinum/”Black?” status.

Are they?

And if you buy e.g. 60k + 60k points, do you receive:

a) Platinum, as you have 60k > 40k?

b) or new status, as 60+60>75k?

All the points activity used to count towards the status with the IHG Rewards Club, but this hasn’t been the case now for more than a year. Purchased points do not count towards Gold, Platinum or the new one launched next week.

You will receive the number of points shown during the purchase process. There are no additional elite bonuses.

Thomas’ Question About Hilton Hawaiian Village Awards (Pricey!)

John is it just me or has the Hilton Hawaiian Village gotten a little high on the amount of points needed for a nights stay??? I was just quoted 113,000 points for a single night starting September 15th. I was planning to stay for a week, but I only have 339,000 points. Two years ago I stayed for 200,000 for 5 nights. —-At this rate it makes Hilton Honors Points not worth much!!!

Just pulled up my Conrad Maldives award reservation from 2008 and at the time I paid 175,000 points for 6 nights at the property (left after 3 though). Right now it is going for roughly 100,000 points per night fifth night free.

If you have been quoted 113K per night, it seems that they only have “Premium” rooms available for awards. You probably need roughly the double number of points to stay there for a week compared to what you currently have.

How much are the paid rates?

When you compare and consider the awards between hotels chains, you always have to take into account also the number of points that you earn for you stays.

READER QUESTIONS: Reader Questions & Comments: Using Corporate Rate At Marriott, IHG Rewards Club Platinum Status Match, Le Club Accorhotels Account Regularization, Getting Most Out Of Hotel Loyalty Program & Earning IHG Rewards Club Points & Bonus Points Packages For Multiple Rooms?

Southwest Flight Delay Notification But The Flight Left On Time?

John, I recently booked a flight from Tampa, fl to Ft. Lauderdale(1 hr). On the day of the flight I received a text that flight was delayed from 1.40pm to 2:20pm, then another to 2:55, then 3:05 then 3:55pm. I received most of these close to and after 2pm.

I went to the airport around 2:30 for the 3:55 pm flight and surly gate agent stated ‘sorry, flight took off at 2:01 pm’ ?????? She said I can take it up with corporate but small print states you can’t trust the delay notices so still be at airport 1 hour before original departure time.

Their website said flight was delayed until 3:55 pm and so did my phone app. So I ask why should I be rushing to the airport if flight will be 2 1/2 hours delayed. They couldn’t even get me on next flt so I was there until after 11 as the 1.55 flt got delayed until 11:35pm.

What is the purpose of a Southwest delay notice if they actually tell you you can’t believe them ??? There were over 20 people screaming at the agent as she became very rude and didn’t wish to help anyone out. Anyone ever have this issue where delays are supposed to be ‘IGNORED”??? I am always amazed that these airlines can do whatever they wish and do not go out of business. What a shame !!!!

That is really unfortunate situation.

What I believe might have happened here, is that they took another plane to operate the segment. The original plane didn’t make it there on time and they just substituted it.

I wouldn’t have gone to the airport 3 hours earlier either had the airline informed me about the delay. What is the purpose of a delay notice if you still need to get there by the original departure time?

Conclusion

Keep the emails and messages coming. I will have these READER QUESTION(S) pieces at least once a week (sometimes more often) and try to cover issues that would help LoyaltyLobby readers.

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