I have 1.3 M points with Westpac that I need to transfer out and ideally I would like to maximise the best opportunity for future travel, both to redeem and earn extra points. The travelling party is 2 adults and one 4 year old, future destinations are:
2018 Fiji or Thailand
Can anyone recommended the best strategy to optimise the existing balance?
And just to complicate it would be nice if I could arrange the outgoing Spain leg in business for my wife as she will be completing the ‘el camino de santiago’ September 2016.
My daughter and I can travel in economy.
thanks for Any advice!!!
* I should add that I have an Altitude Black MC & Amex and that my combined monthly spend is about $10k pm
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I am assuming you are based in SYD without better info.
1.3m Westpac Attitude transfers to 650k Velocity, Asia Miles, Krisflyer and Enrich currently. As you know Westpac Altitude transfer to Asia Miles and Krisflyer will devalue to 2.5:1 after 28 Sept.
Krisflyer partners Air China and Thai Airways fly there. Return tickets cost 100k (econ), 190k (business)
Singapore Airlines fly there. Return tickets cost 95k (econ), 190k (business).
These Krisflyer redemption involved surcharges that aren’t cheap too.
All point cost for Krisflyer does not include the 15% online booking discount, which you can ask from Customer Service Representative over the phone as online booking is not available for these partners.
If you are willing to fly to a more popular Europe hub like Paris, this would open up a lot more options.
Enrich partners Cathay, Etihad, Japan Air fly to Paris. Return 120k, 174k. MAS fly there too for 90k, 230k. Surcharges for Enrich are generally much lower than Krisflyer.
Krisflyer partners Air India, Air China, Asiana, Thai Airways, United Airlines fly to Paris for 100k, 190k return. Singapore Air cost 95k, 190k. United Airlines redemption through Krisflyer does not involve surcharges.
Asia Miles partners Japan Air, Malaysia Air, China Eastern and Cathay themselves fly to Paris. Return costs 110k, 175k. Surcharges are similar to Enrich.
Krisflyer: Air NZ (25k, 35k)
Asia Miles: Air New Zealand (45k, 80k), Qantas (30k, 50k)
Enrich: Qantas (36k, 66k)
Asia miles: Cathay (60k, 120k), Japan Air (90k, 145k), MAS & Qantas (45k, 80k)
Krisflyer: Singapore (50k, 110k); Air India, Air China, Ethiopian, Asiana, Thai Air (65k, 110k)
Enrich: MAS (65k, 150k), Qantas (54k, 96k)
Krisflyer: Air Canada, United (110k, 195k)
More options if you fly to US West Coast first.
The list is not exhaustive and I cannot guarantee its accuracy or whether they are current or remain current by the time of your booking as your date of travel spans multiple years. I left out options for Velocity flights.
Please assess the best FFP to transfer to. Great time to book for Sept 2017. Look for availabilities and best to transfer what is needed for your Spain trip before 28 Sep.
thanks for te insight and explanation
Apologies for not replying sooner (I was on daddy day care all day yesterday)!
Due to the changes with Westapc FFP I am wanting to transfer the full amount out – which FF program do you think would be best?
If it was me, I would fly Singapore air to Barcelona or Paris in 2017. Costs (95+95+190k) X 0.85 = 323k (after 15% online discount). Flying to Paris means you can go on A380 but you have to then make your way to Spain.
You will have 327k miles left. If you have decided to transfer all your point out, judging by your future holiday destinations, I would suggest Krisflyer. You could also split it into two Krisflyer and Asia Miles if you want more options. But it may be smarter to keep all your point together as you would be travelling in a group of 3, hence the additional point balance would help. I suggest AM for splitting only because it is having the transfer devaluation too. Transfer to Enrich is not devalued and hence your future point earnings could still go there if required.
Just my thoughts. There may be a better way around this.
is it worthwhile that I chase a tier status by adding additional stops (e.g Syd-BKK-CDG-JFK-SYD which is approx 48k miles RT) to 2017 Spain trip (pay cash for full trip) and then use points + Status for next 3 yrs of family travel ?
Presently I have zero status with all FFP..
If you are asking whether flying the longer way around for SYD-CDG will earn you more miles for your revenue fare, yes seems to be the answer. Miles earn are calculated by the actual distance flown. Status earn should be same AFAIK.
From Krisflyer T&C.
B. e. Subject to point f, miles are awarded based on the actual distance travelled, as calculated using the great circle distance formula, from the airport of departure to the airport of arrival, plus other bonuses when applicable. For connecting flights, which require change to another flight number, the miles earned are based on the actual distance as calculated, using the great circle distance formula, for each sector within the trip.
With regards to status chasing, it really depends how far you are from the next tier and how much you are willing to sacrifice (time and $) to get to the next tier. Also, how much benefit you get from going up another tier. You have to weigh up the pros and cons yourself.
Krisflyer Elite Silver has the following benefits:
25% bonus earn on actual miles flown
Priority reservation waitlist (good as waitlist seems common for KF award redemption but pointless if you like everything locked in when planning travels)
Priority airport standby (same as above)
Waived or discounted service fees (good for saving change fee costs, etc.)
Krisflyer Elite Gold has the following benefits in addition to Silver benefits (since you mentioned you could earn 48k miles this may be what you are gunning for):
Lounge access (good)
extra check-in baggage allowance
priority airport check in
priority baggage handling
Waived or discounted service fees
Personally, I value the priority reservation waitlist and lounge access most. But you may value some things differently. I also like to lock in my travel plans as much as possible so priority in waitlist doesn’t help me too much. You have to evaluate your own circumstances. Hope that helps.
Syd-BKK-CDG-JFK-SYD is a cool RTW trip. Bit painful in economy if you don’t space it out. Just my 2 cents.
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To clarify, you are travelling in September 2016 for ‘el camino de santiago’ or is this a typo since you have plans for Spain in 2017. I think it is the latter as it would be this month if it is 2016.
You have quite a healthy point balance so should be plenty to play with. I will have a better look later today.
Apologies for typo – yes you are correct it is 2017
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