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Here’s a recap of the interesting points and miles news from this week:
Starwood and Delta Announce Crossover Rewards: Earlier this week, Starwood and Delta announced a new partnership that offers exclusive new benefits to Delta Medallion members and SPG elite members. The program, called Crossover Rewards, begins March 1, 2013, and provides elite members of both loyalty programs reciprocal benefits. SPG Gold and Platinum members will receive bonus Starpoints on purchased Delta fares. As an SPG elite member, you must book a Delta-marketed and operated flight will receive one Starpoint for every one U.S. dollar. SPG Platinum members will receive priority check-in, priority boarding, and waived baggage fees. When Delta Medallions stay with Starwood, they’ll receive one SkyMile per $1 of eligible room revenue. Delta Platinum and Diamond Medallion members will receive elite check-in line access, free in-room high-speed internet access, late check-out. I think this partnership is smart- both Delta and Starwood have strong American Express ties and will probably end up generating more loyalty through Crossover Rewards.
Bonus American AAdvantage Miles with Avis: Now through May 31, 2013, American and Avis have teamed up to offer customers 1,500 American Airlines AAdvantage bonus miles on Avis rentals. This offer is available on qualifying rentals of 3 or more days at participating airport locations in the U.S., Canada, Latin America and the Caribbean. To get the extra miles, just book with Avis and use coupon number MUAA070. Plus, Avis also offers a 25% discount to American Airlines flyers when they book using AWD #K817156. Bonus points can take 6 to 8 weeks to appear. AAdvantage miles earned through this promotion do not count toward elite-status qualification or Million Miler status.
American Airlines and Alaska Airlines Expand Codeshare Agreement: To offer customers more choices and benefits when traveling throughout the United States, American Airlines is strengthening its codeshare relationship with Alaska Airlines. Under the new codeshare expansion, American will place its code on 22 Alaska routes that provide Bay Area travelers with access to Hawaii and increased options for transcontinental flights for travelers in the Pacific Northwest and San Diego to Boston, Washington, D.C., and Orlando. Alaska will place its code on 19 American routes, allowing better access for Alaska Airlines customers on flights between Los Angeles and various domestic cities such as Washington, D.C., Orlando, and Houston, and access between the Pacific Northwest and 11 new cities throughout Texas. If you’re an elite mileage member you’re also eligible for priority check-in and boarding as well as waived baggage charges for two checked bags when traveling on either airline. Customers can begin booking travel on codeshare flights today for travel beginning Feb. 7, 2013. More details can be found on American’s site.
Marriott Elite Buy Back Promotion: Marriott is giving Marriott Rewards members the opportunity to buy back elite status if they didn’t re-qualify for 2013. The concept is you’ll redeem your Marriott points for the status as opposed to paying for it outright. This offer is valid through April 1, 2013 and is limited to those who fell short by one level. So, if you were Platinum last year but only qualified for Gold this year, you would be allowed to buy back your Platinum Status. To buy back Platinum status requires 40,000 points, Gold status is 25,000 and Silver status will cost 7,500 points. Once your status has been reinstated, Marriott Rewards will send you a new valid membership card for your restored Elite level. To take advantage, email Marriott Rewards with your name and Rewards number and what status you would like to buy up to.
Earn Up to a 50% Bonus when Buying TrueBlue Points: JetBlue is offering a bonus when purchasing TrueBlue points. The more TrueBlue points you buy between February 1 and March 15, 2013, the more bonus points you’ll receive. You can earn the same bonus points when gifting them to another TrueBlue member. Here’s how it works: Buy 5,000-9,500 to get 20% bonus points; Buy 10,000-19,500 to get 30% bonus points; Buy 20,000-29,500 to get 40% bonus points; or buy 30,000 to get to 50% bonus points. Allow 72 hours for purchased points to post to the applicable TrueBlue account. Points can be purchased for approximately $37.63 per 1,000 points. Minimum point purchase per transaction is 1,000 points; maximum is 30,000. Members may not purchase more than a total of 60,000 TrueBlue points in a calendar year.So if you were going for the full 50% bonus, you’d have to pay $886.88 and you’d end up with 45,000 points – which are only redeemable for about $450 in travel. Not a great deal. Still, if you’re short a few TrueBlue points for a redemption, you could consider buying some to top up your account, though it seems like a very low value proposition.
American Airlines Window of Wonder Promotion: American Airlines launched their Window of Wonder promotion which runs now though March 8, 2013. To get started, head over to their site where you can register and have the chance to win some cool prizes. There is a daily prize consisting of 1,000 American Airlines AAdvantage miles. Some of the other prizes include 270,000 AAdvantage Miles, Five Star Service airport assistance, Gogo Inflight Wi-Fi pass, Samsung Galaxy Tab tablets, Bose headsets, a year American Airlines Admirals Club membership, a pair American Airlines pajamas, amenity kits and gift cards. There is a limit of two entries per email address per each day of the promotion period. This is open to legal residents of the 50 United States and the District of Columbia and the United Kingdom.
Delta Raising SkyClub Membership Prices: Starting March 1, Delta will begin raising their prices for SkyClub memberships. The new prices are increasing by $50 for Silver ($450), Gold ($400), Platinum ($350), and Diamond ($350) Medallions. General Members still pay $450 to join. An additional initiation fee of $50 or 10,000 miles applies to all new Delta Sky Club memberships. Members must pay this one-time fee as a new member or if your membership has been inactive for six months or longer. As a reminder, Individual one-year Delta Sky Club membership is complimentary for Diamond Medallion members. However, if you will not re-qualify for Diamond Medallion status, you may purchase a Delta Sky Club membership at this discounted rate before your Diamond status ends. Instead of paying for a SkyClub membership, consider the Amex Platinum or Delta Reserve card both which provide SkyClub access. Hat Tip: One Mile at a Time
100% Bonus When Transferring Avianca Taca LifeMiles: Now through February 20, 2013, AviancaTaca is offering a 100% bonus on transferred miles. Transfers must be made in 1,000-mile increments with a maximum of 75,000 miles, at a cost of 1.5 cents per mile. Avianca is a member of Star Alliance and you can view their award chart here, but for instance, roundtrip business class from North America to either Europe or Southern South America (Argentina, Chile, Brazil, Uruguay, Paraguay, Bolivia) is 100,000 miles (135,000 in first class). Another great value in the Avianca award chart is going from North America to South Africa (which includes pretty much everywhere in Sub-Saharan African including the Seychelles, Mauritius and South Africa itself) in business class for just 120,000 miles. Hat Tip: View From the Wing