Reader Questions: Le Club Fold Upgrade At Pullman Park Lane In HK, What Happened To IHG Europe 50% Off Winter Sale, Op Up On International Delta Flight, Four AA Segments To Get EXP Status, Using Virgin Atlantic Points In Australia, IHG Accelerate Promo Issue & Etihad Customer Service Issue Due To Delayed Flights

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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.

LoyaltyLobby Reader Questions December 2 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.

Alex’s Question About Le Club AccorHotels Gold Upgrade At The Pullman Park Lane

Accor Le club gold member booking at Pullman park lane Hong Kong premium room so the UPG will be executive room, I have received email from hotel asking me as i have book room premium with harbor view and they will UPG me to an executive room BUT WITH NO ACCESS TO THE EXECUTIVE LOUNGE and city view so if I want to keep my original harbor view room as the executive room is city view, how they can UPG me to an executive room but deny me the entrance to the lounge? which kind of UPG is this?? can the hotel do that ?? I hate this misleading UPG´s any body advice to reply to the hotel?

The problem with the Le Club AccorHotels elite benefits is that most of them are based on availability or this and that. Also, the program does very little enforcing that the properties are actually delivering the promised benefits.

After you make the Platinum status, then you will have the lounge access for sure.

Lulu’s Question About The IHG’s 50% Off Europe Winter Sale

Hello John, A few days ago you posted about a IHG Winter Sale for 50% Weekends in Europe. The article no longer exists and I had bookmarked the offer page but that is also gone. The deadline to book was December 15th, any idea what happened?

For some reason IHG decided to remove the sale page where we were sending readers. You can, however, still access the fantastic sale using this link.

Andrew’s Question About Getting Op Up On An International Delta Flight

Hi, I wanna ask what is the operational upgrade priority for Delta international flight? If I am a skyteam elite plus of partner’s airlines with a booking in comfort plus, will I have higher chance of upgrading me over other DL elites who are in economy class?

I would say that the likelihood of getting an operational upgrade on Delta is very small. They would obviously upgrade their own elites first and there must be zillion of them on every international Delta flight.

My advise when it comes to operational upgrade is, don’t expect them so you won’t be disappointed.

A Gur’s Question Regarding Getting Four American Airlines Segment For Executive Platinum Status

If I book with American air line an award ticket with mileage do the flight I do – the segment flown with AA count towards my 4 segments I have to have in one calendar year?

I live in London. I am almost executive platinum. I have to spend 1000£ to book a return ticket to JFK via Boston in order to do it. But I hope to book it with miles only if segments count.

The award segments on American airlines won’t count towards the four flight minimum because they are not considered eligible.

Note that the four segments don’t really have to be on American Airlines. They merely need to be AA coded. So partner airlines flights that carry the AA code (if you are booked on one) count towards this requirement.

You can surely find transatlantic trip to somewhere in the States starting from the UK with four AA coded segments for much less than 1,000 GBP if you are willing to do it in coach.

Alternatively, you can always book a four segment return/multicity trip within US for quite cheap. Shouldn’t take more than a day.

Carolyn’s Question Using Virgin Atlantic Flying Club Points In Australia

I live in Australia and have points with Virgin Atlantic, what way can I use them with partner Airlines.

You can use Virgin Atlantic Flying Club points with number of partners (access list here) that includes Virgin Australia.

Unfortunately, Virgin Atlantic no longer publishes partner award charts on its website, so you have to give them a call to find the number of required miles.

Fiona’s Question About IHG’s Accelerate Promotion

I am going to make reservations, at 2 HI hotels in Bali, have completed 3 of the 8 accelerate offers.

My question is:

If I use the IHG app do I qualify for the bonus points in both the offers below

Travel with the IHG® App

Book 2 stay(s) with the IHG® App and earn 3,200 bonus points

Getaway bonus 50% completed)

Stay at 2 Holiday Inn Resort® or Holiday Inn Club Vacations® destination(s), and earn 9,600 bonus points.

You can have one stay to apply to number of hurdles as long as each of the requirements are met.

As long as you book both reservations using the app AND stay at least one of the Holiday Inn Resorts in the island (seems that you have already stayed at one HI Resort), these both hurdles will complete.

Phelan’s Question Regarding Etihad Delay Compensation (Out Of Pocket Expenses)

I’ve enjoyed (and benefitted from — thank you!) your blog for two years. Have run into a brick wall on a reimbursement issue and hope Compensation Cliic will intervene.

Situation:

My husband and I were booked in first class on Etihad Flight #2455 (SYD – AUH) on Thursday, October 1. Departure was supposed to be at 9:25 PM with arrival at 6:10 AM. (Reservation attached as Ex. A; confirm #REMOVED)

Instead our departure was delayed over ten hours, to the next day at 7:55 AM with arrival at 4:40 PM. (Modified Reservation attached as Ex. B.)

As a result, my husband and I had to book an additional night at the hotel in Sydney (October 1) and an additional night in Abu Dhabi (because we had to delay our departure for a day because the meetings we missed on October 2 had to be rescheduled). The cost of the two additional hotel nights was 425 AED (307.36 AED plus 5,000 Starpoints) and $237.66 AUD. (Hotel receipts attached as Ex. C1 and C2.)

Our October 1 dinner and October 4 meals and taxi to another hotel–the hotel where we were staying didn’t have any vacancy for the third night–totaled $37.50 AUD and 264.25 AED. (Meal and dinner receipts attached as Ex. D, E, F.)

In sum, our out-of-pocket expenses caused by the flight delay totaled 1,423.67 AED ($387.67 USD). I spoke to an Etihad representative at the First Class Lounge and she instructed me to send the details and receipts to feedback@etihad.ae and request a refund.

Results:

I have sent four emails to feedback@etihad.ae and called the customer service line three times. I receive a standard response to each of the emails* but that is it. Customer service says they can’t help me; I can only file a claim via the feedback@etihad.ae email address.

Possible for you to look into this? I would so very much appreciate it.

I have said it many times before on LoyaltyLobby and will probably continue saying in the future as well that Emirates, Etihad and Qatar are wonderful when everything goes according to the plan. If there are any irregular operations such as what you have encountered here, everything will fall apart regardless what class of service you might have been flying/ticketed on.

It is unclear where you are located based on your email. If you are from Australia, I would contact the local Fair Trading office. Those that are based in the United States or some other countries can file a small claims court case against Etihad. In some countries, you can do this entirely online.

You can try your luck and forwarding your complaint to the CEO of Etihad (probably someone at the executive office screen his emails). The email address is jhogan@etihad.ae.

It is really unfortunate that you must go to this extend to resolve an issue with Etihad, but none of these Middle Eastern airlines have any customer service.

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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