Tonight I am trying to redeem Iberia Avios for a Binter Canarias flight. Setting aside moving points to affiliated Avios.com or to British Airways, Iberia alone boasts numerous airline partners such as Avianca and TACA in the Spanish-speaking Americas, see the full list here. Interestingly, some of these partners, including Binter Canarias, can only be booked by telephone with that airline’s call center, not Iberia’s. As Binter Canarias is closed for the weekend I tried Iberia on a lark. After waiting 32 minutes to speak to an agent, there was another dozen minutes of well-intentioned confusion that only confirmed that Iberia agents cannot book awards on these flights. I am tempted to just buy the ticket as it appears a roundtrip is required and as I will dump the return, I would only be getting about a cent per Avios. My blood is up so I will have a spin on Monday before I give in. I don’t speak Spanish and hoping that the English website for Binter Canarias indicates they will have English-language service. Head for Points has a nice list of the various Avios partners and which program you need to use to book them.
My non-serious question of the week is will anyone notice they have lost Regus membership from their Amex Business Platinum? (Doctor of Credit). I have lost count of the ways I have been given membership with Regus, even for several years carried a card in my briefcase, and have never used any of them. I wonder what the record for Regus memberships by a single person is?
Delta continues to show it’s disdain for customers. View from the Wing asks Is Delta Removing Award Charts the Worst Thing Any Frequent Flyer Program Has Done, Ever? Some of the more interesting takes on Delta’s nefarious doings include:
- Delta removed their award charts because no one understood them (The Free-quent Flyer)
- Hey Delta, I Have a Possible Way Out For You (ThreadTripping)
- Does the IHG playbook show where Delta SkyMiles is headed? (MileCards) Is Atlanta the fount of loyalty program evil?
- American Discounted Off Peak Awards Now Let You Book US Airways Flights (View from the Wing). Another AA feature I was dimly aware and need to pay attention. That South Korea off-peak would be perfect is a OneWorld partner flew nonstop from NYC. My wife is not willing to connect unless there is no alternative.
- United had a little issue with customers who fancied themselves residents of Denmark. TravelBloggerBuzz pointed me to the funny 13 Stages of a Mistake Fare by Hans Golden (Will Run For Miles). Man of the people The Points Guy is leading the DOT charge.
- Use Your Club Carlson Card to Ensure You Get the Annual Bonus (Frugal Travel Guy). Seems there may be issues with getting the annual bonus with no card activity as US Bank does not issue statements in months with no activity. Reminds me that I forgot to track my annual bonuses. I got both personal and business when they launched, so cardmember anniversary is December and last year the bonuses posted with the February statement. On the lookout now for the statements next week. I don’t think I used either card this month after running some year-end volume through them.
- JetBlue looks to be sending its credit card business to Barclaycard next year (Doctor of Credit). If you want a JetBlue card, get it now for the Amex bonus. Then, if you think Barclaycard will approve you, cancel before any conversion.
- TransUnion Mobile App Locks and Unlocks Your Credit Instantly (Maximizing Money). The one credit report I want credit card issuers to use. Experian, pretty please copy this!
- On Friday I applied for 10 credit cards, results to be tallied next week. I should have caught up on the blogs as I would have tried for two CapitalOne Venture Cards before unlocking my Experian report (Doctor of Credit, again).
- The African Hopper with Miles (Travel Is Free). Another of Drew’s posts that shows me how much better I could have done one of my trips. Still, I was pretty happy with my 35k United award for BJM – KGL (stop) – ADD – LLW (stop) – ADD – ZNZ until Ethiopian decided to send my BJM-KGL flight that day instead to Nairobi and up-end the whole trip.
- How Families Can Save on Lodging (Frugal Travel Guy). News to me that Hilton has a family-friendly 50% off 2nd standard room for accompanying kids.
- One Mile at a Time ran a Hyatt gift card giveaway to elicit feedback on Frequent Traveler University. His readers sure like award flights. I don’t recall seeing anything about Hello Kitty despite that being the obvious way to win the ‘most constructive comment’ prize. I speak at and enjoy these events, next up is sold out San Diego in March followed by Dallas in April, which still has tickets available.