Airbus has their second A350-1000 XWB test aircraft out and about in its new Carbon Livery.
With a three-class configuration, it can carry 366 passengers just under 8,000 nautical miles. It’s powered by two Rolls Royce Trent XWB engines that have been custom built for Airbus specifically for this plane. From Airbus’s estimates, the airframe design and engine come together to offer a substantial 25% increase in fuel efficiency to other long-range competitors.
Lucky, over at OneMileAtATime, has detailed instructions on how to connect your Starwood Preferred Guest number to your Marriott Rewards number. It only takes a few minutes, and the status match is virtually instantaneous. It already matched my Platinum SPG!
In another post, he details some of the benefits of this link. The big thing to note is that the connection isn’t one way – you can transfer Starpoints at a 1:3 ratio to Marriott Rewards points, or go the other way and transfer 3 Marriott points to one Starpoint. Since AmEx changed their signup bonus this year, that means you can use the Marriott credit card to convert 80,000 Rewards points into just over 29,000 Starpoints!
Similarly, SPG Platinums are Marriott Platinums, which means we get complimentary United Silver Elite status. United Gold Elite members are Marriott Gold as well, so they can match to SPG Gold! Not a bad deal, all things considered.
If we keep all the programs separate, I can live with this! At the very least, it seems that the programs will remain independent until 2018, so that is a relief as I love the Starwood Preferred Guest program.