Japan Airlines (JAL) will update its Mileage Bank Oneworld and partner award ticket mileage requirements effective November 20, 2018.
The airline is also more drastically revamping the number of miles required for awards on its own flights sometime in December.
You can access JAL’s web page for awards here.
New Partner award chart:
JAL’s partner award chart is based on the total distance flown and applies for all airlines.
Shorter awards will become less expensive and premium cabin (Premium Economy, Business and First) will require more miles in most cases.
New Oneworld award chart:
Very few changes here. Not sure why they didn’t even bother update this?
JAL’s New chart for JAL flights
Here’s the current award chart:
Here are some more significant changes. Awards are now basically counted point to point where previously you could transit in Japan.
JAL will also introduce award inventory called PLUS that will require (sometimes many multiples) more miles than at the base level and can be very expensive.
You can no longer wait-list for economy, premium economy or business class standard awards. You can continue, however, waitlist for first class awards.
Here are the rule changes:
JAL is making awards on its own metal more expensive. Previously, North America to Southeast Asia would have been 70,000 miles. The new award chart requires 90,000 in business.
Overall, these changes are palatable as long as there are no additional surprised for few years. Not sure, however, why someone would redeem at the higher end PLUS level for at least economy class service. The number of miles required quickly becomes absurd.
Also, JAL could have left the award waitlist as it is. Member could have chosen between confirming PLUS award at the higher level or waitlisting at the standard mileage requirement that may not confirm.