British Airways Introduces Fares Without Checked Bag – Becoming No Frills Airline?


British Airways has introduced fares out from London Gatwick to Amsterdam, Jersey, Dubrovnik, Turin and Tunis on a “trial” bases starting on travel from February 26, 2013. Previously, the airline has advertised being a full service airline with no add ons required for checked bags and on board refreshments even on short haul routes.


Thing to note that this only affects the above five routes from London Gatwick on a trial base. If this trial is successful, I wouldn’t be surprised this to spread to all shorthaul destinations server from Gatwick and eventually from London Heathrow as well. There is very little information that you can find about this trial on Here’s link to a PDF that is aimed for travel agents that tries to explain the rationale behind this decision.

Southwest’s Double Tier Points Promo Going Nationwide

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Southwest’s launched a promotion for double Rapid Rewards points nationwide and double tier points for flights to/from Milwaukee on February 4, 2013. Now, Southwest is extending the double tier promotion nationwide.


This double tier points promotion is valid for flights from February 20 to May 15, 2013. Note that only tickets issued after February 4, 2013, are eligible for both double tier points and double Rapid Rewards points promotion. You can access Southwest’s web page for this promotion here.

Starwood Award Category Changes For 2013


Starwood just released a list of their properties moving up (218) and moving down (48) on March 5, 2013, in award categories. You can book using the current rates until March 4 as far as the hotel has loaded award availability.


Note that SPG can make more changes to award categories before the change takes effect on March 5. Last year, there were quite a few properties that did change in fact. You can access the PDF file here.

Wyndham Award Charge Changes – New Categories & Devaluation of Points?


Wyndham had a small banner on its front page about “Free Nights Starting Faster”. I thought that this sounded like Hyatt’s past Faster Free Nights promotion. You can access Wyndham web page about this change here.


But it turned out that this is not necessarily an enhancement. Wyndham is introducing new award level at 5500 points (the former lowest was 6000) and 35K/40K levels are removed.

KLM Reduces (Partially Eliminates) Free Checked Bag From European Routes

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The ancillary revenue streams are becoming more important for the airlines. Most of the network carriers in the United States now charge for checked bag (no charge for elites) and this seems to spreading now to Europe as well. You can read more about these changes on KLM’s web site here.


KLM is part of the Air France-KLM Group. Air France just announced their new shorthaul carrier Hop! that also charges for checked bag.

Major Hilton HHonors Devaluation In Making – New Award Categories


Hilton HHonors sent the following innocent sounding email earlier today. When program sends you an email about changes to the program and points that you should learn about them, they are rarely, if ever, for the better.


What do you think about this change and it is going to affect you? Leave your comment below.

Let’s read this email. The Premium Room Rewards are 99% of the time very unwise option requiring often double, triple or quadruple number of points per night compared to the regular awards. There are occasional glitches, however.

Hyatt February (2013) Edition of the 48 Hour Sale – C48FEB

Hyatt is having their monthly 48 hour sale where you can save up to 20% off of best available rates (BAR). Sometimes you can save quite a bit of money and sometimes you cannot. You can access the Hyatt’s web page for this promotion here.


These rates are valid at select US, Canada, and Caribbean hotels for stays between March 6 and June 4, 2013. The promotional dates for individual properties may vary. You need to book this offer by 11:59PM CDT on February 20, 2013.

Priority Club 2 For 1 Spring Offer For United Kingdom

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Priority Club just sent out an email about their latest offer for the UK market. You can get 2 nights at the price of 1 during weekends (some may also offer weekday availability) at Crowne Plaza, Indigo, Holiday Inn, and Holiday Inn Express hotels in the United Kingdom for stays between March 22 and May 7, 2013. You need to book this offer by March 24, 2013.


The rate code for this offer is IDs21. You can access this offer on Priority Club’s web page here.

When Does It Make Sense To Buy Airlines Miles?


Airlines seem to have almost never ending mileage sales nowadays. Some airlines literally have an offer out monthly (e.g. US Airways), where airlines like American and United tend to have less frequent sales. I do write about these sales here on LoyaltyLobby when they pop up, with my opinions.


A LoyaltyLobby reader sent me an email last week and wanted to get my opinion… when do I think that it is good to buy miles and at what price?

Le Club Accorhotels Platinum Status (Yet Another New Sign Up)


The public links for instant Le Club Accorhotels Platinum status come and go. Even if you have no use for Le Club Accorhotels Platinum status, you can always use it to status match to i.e. Club Carlson or Priority Club Platinum status. I have had the Platinum status by request available for the past few months and it still is.


You can sign up for the instant Le Club Accorhotels Platinum status using this link. Please note that you need to sign up using an email address that has not been previously associated with Le Club Accorhotels or A Club.

Oneworld Alliance Carrier Bonuses for Malaysia Airlines Flights Feb 15 to Apr 15

Most of the Oneworld alliance airlines are offering double award miles on Malaysia Airlines flights between February 15 to April 15, 2013. Some of the programs require you to register for this promotion in advance while others have enrolled all their members.


Malaysia Airlines joined the Oneworld Alliance on February 1, 2013. You can take advantage of alliance wide status benefits that you may have with one of the members when flying on Malaysia.

Emirates Institutes Fuel Surcharges On Paid & Award Tickets Originating From Australia & New Zealand


Emirates has quietly instituted fuel surcharges on flights and awards tickets originating only from Australia & New Zealand. This must be in anticipation of the joint venture with Qantas that should start sometime in late March/early April. You can read more about this partnership here and why airlines love furl surcharges here.


Emirates has started to publish a fuel surcharge line for its fares from Australia and New Zealand. There is no fuel surcharges on flights TO these two countries.

Flying On Iberia Or To/From Spain This Week? Check Flight Cancellations Due To Strike

The loss making Spanish airline Iberia that is part of IAG, the International Airlines Group, must ground approximately 40% of its flights this week due to strikes. This is the first of the three five day strikes that the airlines unions have planned for February & March.


This strike will affect other airlines operations in/out of Spain as well as the Iberia’s ground handling operations are affected too. The airline plans to operate 90% of its long haul flights. Most of the cancellations affect short haul operations.

American Airlines and US Airways Merger

The big news of the past week in the travel field was the proposed merger of the AMR, the parent of American Airlines and the US Airways. The merger gives the creditors of the AMR 72% and the US Airways shareholders 28% of the equity of the merged airline.


You can read more about the effect of this merger on AA’s website

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