Reader Question: Partner Airline Changed The Mileage Earning By 75% – Any Recourse?

2 Comments

A LoyaltyLobby reader sent me a question via the website about Air China earning in Aeroplan that was discounted by 75% after the ticket purchase.

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Here’s the question from the reader:

I have a question regarding changes in miles awarded for a specific class between the time of booking and the time of actual flight. Specifically, a class that I booked for one leg of my upcoming trip to China on Air China at the moment of purchase was credited by 100% of miles flown on my Aeroplan account. Recently it has been changed to 25%.

Based on what I read it seems that I am stuck with 25% and that airlines can change this percentage as they wish irrespective of information provided at the time of purchase. Could you confirm if I am correct? Many thanks!

Unfortunately, I don’t have good news for the reader. Airlines can and often change partner fare classes eligible for mileage frequently and usually without any notice for the members.

It is quite mystery how and when airlines decide to do this. You may find out that some other partners may still offer higher award miles for the Air China flight even when Air Canada cut it by 75%.

Conclusion

These fare class changes are really difficult if you have calculated carefully to meet the elite status requirements. Cutting certain fare class earning by 75% may mean that you won’t qualify without taking some additional flights.

Sometimes airlines have ticketing date requirement for certain miles changes but this is only when ticket is issued on their own stock. If someone takes a flight on Air China, Air Canada (Aeroplan) won’t get information when the ticket was issued (as long as it is not on their own stock).

Generally, discounted/deeply discounted fares are most problematic, although Lufthansa sells business class fares ticketed on P that won’t earn anything on many Star Alliance programs.

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  • BenniHK

    It really depends on which airline and whether they have integrity (if any).
    I did emailed ba for rectifying the mileage (and tier pts) accrued for a partner carrier tix purchased before the major change of baec early last year but flew after it. And they agreed to do so within mins, despite their terms did stated the cut off should be actual flying date instead of tix purchasing date.
    So it’s no harm to email ac about it, explain ur situation with supporting eticket receipts. And good luck!

  • Will

    Aeroplan did the same to me with an asiana flight
    Booked it months ago in a class that would have given me 70% miles and would have hit the 50k tier. Now scrambling to take a weekend flight somewhere to reach 50k by end of year
    A$$holes