Thursday, May 2, 2013

May 2 Update: Frontier to charge for carry-on bags, a few Aeroplan promos (and my thoughts on one of them!)

Another quiet day here at RC (well at least on what I can present to you!) Big things happening here behind the scenes. If everything goes as planned you'll see the results tomorrow!

News, Tips & Tricks

Following in the footsteps of Spirit Airlines and Ryanair, Frontier Airlines has announced they will start charging for carry on bags (only to those people who don't buy tickets via Frontiers website) and will charge a $1.99 for coffee, tea, soda, and juice for those who buy tickets in the two lowest economy fare classes. Now its been a few years since Frontier pulled out of Vancouver and Calgary but thought this was still worth mentioning for those of you who may fly F9 on US domestic routes. (HT One Mile at a Time)

Following last weeks announcement from Air France KLM Flying Bue about changes to their InterContinental award tickets comes the news that they will be opening up First Class award seat space on Air France to non-elite Flying Blue members. (HT The Points Guy)

In the bonus offers section you'll notice the Air Canada bonus for the new Istanbul route that I mentioned yesterday. The more I think about it I think it is a really weak route launch bonus! AC feels it is enough to offer a small bonus and I guess it is better than nothing as AC usually doesn't have route launch bonuses like we see from American Airlines, Alaska Airlines and so on but come on 1,500 bonus miles for Economy Class? On an Intercontinental route? Not worth it if others airlines are pricing cheaper (consider Turkish Airlines, a Star Alliance partner no less). You have to ask the question: What is the point of a route launch bonus? There are a few reasons airlines have route launch bonuses some of which are as follows (but not limited to) ...

  1. Drive awareness of the new route

  2. Fill the plane. New routes tend not to be full so a route bonus is put in place to move traffic from another airline (an enticement for switching) or encourage changes to travel plans (ie in this case connect to other flights via Istanbul instead of Frankfurt, London, etc.

Well this promotion will drive awareness of the route as Aeroplan members will see the promotion  on the website and in their emails but will it fill the plane with such a small bonus? I'm not that sure. When American Airlines launches a new Intercontinental route they either offer Double Miles or a tiered bonus depending on the fare class which usually range from 5,000 miles in economy to 50,000 in Business or First depending on the promotion or route. Those are the numbers that will drive point #2 to success. Granted, perhaps Air Canada has already sold a decent amount of seats but those bookings have tapered off now and they want to fill a few more with this small enticement.  The people who will make the most of this promo are the elites who will choose flying AC for the benefits instead of another airline regardless of price. Ultimately without seeing actual numbers its a guessing game on my part but when you see the bonuses most airlines place on new routes, Air Canada's is just piddly.

Bonus Offers

Air Canada Aeroplan
  • Earn up to 3,000 Bonus Aeroplan Miles for each round trip (or 2 one way segments) you fly on Air Canada between Toronto and Istanbul. More... Book by May 31 for travel Jun 4 - Sep 2, 13

  • 5,000 Bonus Aeroplan Miles when you book an all-inclusive package to Cuba with Air Canada Vacations and travel between August 1 and September 30. More... Book by May 31, 13

  • 150 Bonus Aeroplan Miles on every bouquet purchased from Teleflora. More... Until Jun 30, 13

  • Earn up to Triple Aeroplan Miles. when parking at Vancouver International Airport. More... Until Jun 30, 13

Delta SkyMiles
  • Earn up to 500 SkyMiles when you pay your rent online with Williampaid. More... Ongoing

Jumeirah Sirius
  • Triple Sirius Points for stays of 3+ nights at the Jumeirah at Etihad Towers Abu Dhabi. More... Jun 1 - Sep 30, 13

  • Double Sirius Points for stays at the Jumeirah Zabeel Saray Dubai. More... Jun 1 - Sep 30, 13 

TAP Portugal Victoria
  • Double Victoria Miles for stays at Altis Hotels in Portugal. More... Until Jun 30, 13

  • Double Victoria Miles for stays of 2 or more nights at the Solares de Portugal. More... Until Jun 30, 13

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