New Hotel Loyalty Partnership Copies Hyatt/MGM and Airline Program Could IPO

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News and notes from around the interweb: In 2014 Virgin Australia spun off its frequent flyer program raising $293 million at an $838 million valuation. They could be considering an IPO at a valuation of up to $2.5 billion...

United Debuts Its First Polaris Lounge at O’Hare: Great for Business Class Customers, Not So Great for Loyal Ones

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American is renovating and rebranding first class lounges and first and business class lounges separate from their Admirals Clubs. You cannot pay to get in. Frequent customers buying memberships don’t have access. Rendering of New Flagship Lounge Seating, credit:...

United Re-thinking Share Buybacks, Aircraft Orders

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Airlines have been trying to goose lagging stocks with share buybacks. Fundamentally airline stocks haven’t performed because there’s little chance of significant profit growth and spending cash to retire shares underscores that: it suggests that there’s no more profitable...

16 Things I Love about the New Chase Ink Business Preferred Card

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I receive compensation for many links on this blog. You don’t have to use these links, but I am grateful to you if you do. American Express, Citibank, Chase, and other banks are advertising partners of this site. Any...

British Airways Working on New Pill Passengers Can Swallow to Get Better Service

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British Airways is looking to automate its service by getting passengers to swallow a pill that will communicate your needs to their crew. British Airways is investigating getting passengers to swallow ‘digital pills’ that will tell flight staff if...

American Temporarily Rebranding First Class Lounges

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American is temporarily re-branding their existing Flagship lounges as International First Class lounges as it prepares to introduce brand new business and first class Flagship Lounges in the coming months. That’s because these new Flagship Lounges are going to...

Inside the FBI File on Hijacker DB Cooper Plus How United Will Charge More for the Same Tickets

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News and notes from around the interweb: Cranky Flier does a nice job explaining United’s IT challenges with demand forecasting and why the airline thinks it’s selling tickets too cheaply — to the tune of hundreds of millions of...

Giant Leap Forward for Citi ThankYou Points: You Can Now Redeem Garuda Indonesia Awards Online

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Arguably the most difficult program in the world for US members to redeem miles with has been SkyTeam member Garuda Indonesia. They’re certainly the most difficult program to redeem miles with that partners with a transferable points currency. You...

Delta Becomes First Major US Frequent Flyer Program to Offer Premium Economy Redemptions. And They’re Shockingly Expensive

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US airlines haven’t offered premium economy products on their own flights. American’s new premium economy, launched on the Boeing 787-9, is the first. US airline frequent flyer programs haven’t offered the option for redeeming miles for premium economy. That’s...

Elaine Chao Expected to Be Named Transportation Secretary

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Elaine Chao, former Labor Secretary and former Deputy Secretary of Transportation, will apparently be nominated to become Secretary of Transportation. She’s also former President of the United Way and a former board member of Northwest Airlines. Prior service at...

United’s New Polaris Business Class Service Launches Thursday, Here’s What to Expect

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I covered the details of United’s new business class product extensively when it was first announced in June. The soft product goes live December 1 and I spoke with Maria Walter, Managing Director of Product and Brand Strategy, about...

United Passenger Tired Of Waiting for Gate, Went Out Emergency Exit

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Yesterday a passenger on United’s flight UA1892 from New Orleans to Houston pulled the emergency exit door over the wing of the Boeing 737 on arrival and jumped out. She went out onto the plane’s wing — really not...

American Withdraws Its Application for Expanded Joint Venture With Qantas

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American Airlines and Qantas became joint venture partners in 2011. That means they’re allowed to coordinate schedule and pricing. These arrangements also frequently include revenue-sharing. The American arrangement with Qantas, unlike Delta-Virgin Australia, was approved in the US with...

Hurry to Double Dip on Your Travel Credits for Big Money Savings

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I receive compensation for many links on this blog. You don’t have to use these links, but I am grateful to you if you do. American Express, Citibank, Chase, and other banks are advertising partners of this site. Any...

Marriott Begins to Implement Strategy for Making Sense of 30 Hotel Brands and My Head is Starting to Hurt

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When Marriott acquired Starwood, plenty of commentators started to wonder about the future of several of Starwood’s brands. After all, many of them are small — Starwood wasn’t growing as quickly as investors would have liked, hence the selloff...

NEW DELTA BENEFIT: Listen to Onboard Trump Rant, Get a Free Flight

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Despite donating big to Democrats this cycle, Delta’s CEO was on the Trump train. The hope: that a Donald Trump presidency could revive protectionism, shut out Gulf carriers from US markets, reducing consumer choice and increasing fares. The “Trump...

The Latest Ideas in Loyalty from Amex, IHG, Ford and the Wall Street Journal

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Last Friday IHG Rewards Club hosted a ‘loyalty summit’ in New York at the Kimpton Eventi that I attended. It was a small group, in an intimate space, although super cool — directly outside the window they control a...

The Ugliest Planes and Best Food Plus Pocketing $1500 Thanks to Wells Fargo Cross-selling

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News and notes from around the interweb: The ugliest airline liveries of all time The history of airline cooking tech and these airline serve food onboard that rivals restaurants on the ground. Etihad Salmon Biryani Uber seeks to convince...

Transatlantic Business Class for Just $903 Roundtrip!! (Delta and KLM)

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Delta and KLM are offering transatlantic business class for just $930 roundtrip between Helsinki and New York. This is one for my European readers, or those who want to position themselves to Europe to start the trip. Flying from...

British Airways Ejects Baby, Toddler and Their Mom Over Drinking Incident

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On Friday a mother in her 20s was waiting to board a British Airways flight from Tenerife South to London Gatwick along with her two kids. So she kills the time as one does on a holiday route traveling...