Best and Worst Domestic Airlines, Huge Amex Platinum Changes, Exciting New Routes for February and More

Mar 4, 2017

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Each Saturday, we round up news stories that you may have missed from the week before, including several that already appeared on The Points Guy, and some more that we haven’t covered yet. If you’re an avid TPG reader, scroll down for the new stuff. Here’s the top miles, points and travel news you may have missed this week:

Find out how your favorite airline stacks up against the competition.

The Best and Worst Airlines in the United States

Generally, the domestic airlines aren’t held in the highest regard by the average American traveler. There are, however, differences among the major carriers. We crunched the numbers to find out which are the best — and worst — domestic airlines.

The Amex Platinum card will soon feature a metal design.

Big Amex Platinum Changes: Metal Card, 5x on Hotels, $200 in Uber Credits, Higher Fee

Starting March 30, the Amex Platinum card will get a big upgrade — highlights include 5x Membership Rewards points for hotel bookings made through, $200 in ride credits per year with Uber, complimentary Gold cards and a new, metal design. There will also be a $100 hike in the annual fee, to $550 per year.

One of the most notable new routes of the month is ANA’s daily flight between NRT and MEX. Image courtesy of visualspace via Getty Images.

Exciting New Airline Routes for February 2017 and Beyond

Check out the most exciting new routes for February, including Southwest flights from Oakland (OAK) to several Mexican destinations and a new longest flight in the world between Doha (DOH) and Auckland (AKL) on Qatar.

Singapore’s KrisFlyer program accepts transfers from every major transferrable points currency.

Singapore’s Increasing Redemption Rates, Scrapping Online Booking Discount

On March 23, Singapore’s KrisFlyer program will undergo a devaluation, including the elimination of the 15% discount on award bookings made through the carrier’s website as well as an increase in award rates in certain regions. One silver lining, however, is that the carrier is eliminating fuel surcharges on Singapore- and SilkAir-operated flights.

A former SPG exec is now the head of Loyalty for the new Marriott, which should be a good sign for SPG loyalists.

SPG Head Will Lead the Combined Marriott/Starwood Loyalty Program

As the Marriott/Starwood merger continues to develop, we learned this week that David Flueck, the former SVP of revenue management of the Starwood Preferred Guest program, is now the SVP of Loyalty for the entire brand, which is reassuring for SPG loyalists concerned about the future of the program.

Comparing Value With Hilton’s New Award Pricing Structure

One of the hallmark features of Hilton’s refreshed Honors program is the Points & Money option, which allows members to pair a variable number of points (in increments of 1,000 points and starting at 5,000 points) with an equivalent value in cash. We crunched the numbers in a few examples — a full award night, a night paid for by cash or a night paid for with Points & Money — to see how you can get the best value.

Have you ever visited Cluj-Napoca, Romania?

Must See: An Underground Amusement Park in a Former Transylvanian Salt Mine

Check out this incredible amusement park constructed in what used to be a salt mine in Cluj-Napoca, Romania, the de facto capital of Transylvania.

In other news…

JetBlue begins flying to Atlanta (ATL) on March 30.

Earn Tons of Bonus Points When You Fly JetBlue’s New BOS – ATL Flight

JetBlue is launching service to Atlanta (ATL) on March 30, with flights to Boston (BOS). To celebrate the new service, the airline is offering an opportunity to earn up to 6,000 bonus TrueBlue points when you book and fly between March 30 and June 30, 2017.

Save 25% on FlyingBlue awards between some US cities and Europe.

Check Out This Month’s Flying Blue Promo Awards

You can save up to 25% on Flying Blue award tickets on select routes between the US and Europe with this month’s Promo Awards.

Get a boost toward Mosaic status with JetBlue’s latest promo.

Earn 2x TrueBlue Points on All JetBlue Flights For a Limited Time

Register to earn 2x TrueBlue points on every JetBlue flight you take through April 30, 2017 if you book by March 23, 2017. With this promo, you’ll earn 6 base flight points per dollar, which could help you reach Mosaic status faster.

Featured image of the St. Regis Maldives Vommuli Resort.

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