Flying Blue to Lower their Elite Requalification Thresholds

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The COVID-19 pandemic is proving to be especially challenging for the travel and hospitality industry. Flight restrictions and border closings are disrupting travel plans for millions of passengers and airlines and hotels are constantly updating their policies trying to accommodate a fast-changing reality.

Flying Blue is the (one before) last travel/hospitality program to acknowledge these travel disruptions will negatively impact elite member qualification, and they have released an email explaining changes in their qualification criteria.

EDIT: Air France-KLM Flying Blye now has an announcement on their website you access here.

I got this email a few minutes ago (screenshot in Spanish) announcing the measures they’re enacting:

In summary:

  • If you’re a Silver/Gold/Platinum member with qualification period ending in March, April or May 2020, all requalification thresholds are lowered by 25%. This effectively means that the requalification for Silver/Gold/Platinum will require 75/135/225 XPs respectively.
  • If you have already reached these new thresholds, you’ll keep your current status.
  • There will be no award miles expiration for miles expiring before the end of 2020.

My qualification year ends in May, so I am covered by these measures. In my case, I have 80 XPs so far so I’m good for another year of Silver status, although the requalification threshold still shows at 100 XPs.  The new requalification thresholds won’t be shown on your Flying Blue space, but according to the email, they’ll be updated at the end of your qualification period.

Conclusion

It is a good move from Flying Blue to address requalification issues with elite members (like me) whose end of qualification period is directly affected by the wave of travel bans all around, but this is just part of the issue.

It is too early to tell but they should have at least hinted to broader qualification period extensions as this situation affects all their frequent travelers and not only those with ending qualification periods.

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