The other day, Stefan at RapidTravelChai answered United when they asked him if he going in the direction he wanted. He outlines the real reasons to keep United as a secondary airline in the US, and many resonated with me. In particular: Star Alliance partners.
Though I am a loyal Delta flyer, the others of the big three can’t come close to their operational performance, having a backup option is always nice. With members in the Star Alliance that are known for their hard and soft products (Singapore and Lufthansa, for example), they are definitely a valuable asset to a traveler. Right now, my Star Alliance status is courtesy of Marriott, but with 2017 around the corner it is a good time to re-evaluate travel plans.
This morning, Tiffany at OneMileAtAtime published an article that shows just how broken the United website has become when trying to book award tickets. The worst part is, agents seem to be powerless to override these changes and book the tickets themselves! Miles are nice to have, but if you’re unable to use them, it’s kind of a moot point. 🙁
Singapore Airlines is well known as a workaround to earn at least 100% of the miles flown regardless of fare. Though I am not sure how long this is going to last, Singapore frequently has sales that reduce the number of miles needed for award flights. Another option is one I had previously not considered until Stefan mentioned it: Asiana. Asiana requires only 500,000 miles flown on Star Alliance partners before you attain lifetime Star Alliance Gold status. This is particularly valuable as you receive lounge access when you have Gold status with a foreign airline. While you don’t always earn full distance flown when it comes to award miles, it is much better than being a factor of the ticket price. (Especially when watching your budget!)
I’m still uncertain where I’ll put my extra flights next year, but Singapore or Asiana are looking to be very strong contenders for where to credit United miles, when I do fly them.
A few days ago, I posted about a great deal on Premium Economy seats to Singapore. This morning I received an email about another deal going on! This one is for economy travel from various US-based hubs (SFO, LAX, JFK, and IAH — San Francisco, Los Angeles, New York-Kennedy, and Houston, respectively).
The other big difference is that this sale isn’t just to Singapore, as you might have noticed from the image above. A full table can be found on the deal site, and below.
This is a flash sale, so don’t expect the fares to last for long. If you have any flights planned to these regions, it might be worth jumping on while you can!
I love Singapore Airlines (SQ). The very first 747-400 I flew on was on their route from LA to SIN, and I will never forget that experience. Though the bulk of my family was in coach, my grandparents were in business class and I remember seeing just how much care the flight crew took of preparing those seats. The thing that surprised me was that they took just as much care of those of us in economy!
Singapore Airlines has always had a stellar soft product (the experience), and their hard product (the tangible) has never been far behind. They have recently redesigned their premium economy and it looks phenomenal. To commemorate it, they have also released a sale for their premium economy product to Singapore from New York, LA, or San Francisco. For only $1,150, pre-taxes, you can experience it in person! If I had the time and spare change, I know I would be taking advantage of this. You can experience this new layout on their Airbus A380, Airbus A350, and Boeing 777–300ER aircraft.
If you would like to see more images of the premium economy hard product, head on over to ThePointsGuy.com – one of their contributors had a chance to experience it and they have me sold. I also look forward to seeing more reviews of Premium Economy products as they are a lot more accessible to the general public than Business or First Class products.