This program lets you buy an airline ticket — and then watch it grow in value

May 25, 2020

This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. Terms apply to the offers listed on this page. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.

At TPG, we paused traveling to help slow the spread of COVID-19. Local and federal governments around the globe are now debating the appropriate levels of isolation and distancing. Before booking that next trip, we recommend you talk to your doctor, follow health officials’ guidance and research local travel restrictions. TPG is continuing to publish deals, reviews and general travel news to inform and prepare you for that trip, whether it is next month or next year.

Not sure when to book that future trip? Plusgrade may have a solution that could help you get better value out of your next flight.

For all your TPG news and more ways to save money subscribe to our daily newsletter.

Plusgrade, the company behind many airline upgrade bidding systems, just launched a new initiative called “Travel Again” that aims to accelerate the travel industry’s post-coronavirus recovery. Its plan? Entice travelers with certificates for flights that will grow in value over time. The first major airline to join the initiative will be LATAM airlines.

Related: Guide to bidding for flight upgrades for premium seats

 

Here’s how it works: You buy a certificate for $100 to $1,200 and that value will grow over time at a rate set by the airline. In LATAM’s case, the rate is set at 5%, so if you bought a travel certificate for $500, it would increase by $150 over six months, upgrading your certificate value to $650.

Related: State-by-state guide to reopenings

Related: Country-by-country guide to coronavirus reopenings

Airlines can choose to use the program differently to incentivize travelers who want to travel sooner. For example, Plusgrade said in a press release that it is “encouraging participating airlines and cruise lines to weight the significance of earlier travel. The suggested configuration is to make the certificate worth its highest value shortly after purchase, and then reach a lower level of increase as time goes on.”

Related: 16 industry experts share their thoughts on the future of travel 

“In a world where people dream of traveling by air again as soon as possible, the Plusgrade Travel Again program helps both airlines and passengers by creating a genuine win-win scenario,” said ​Dr. Joe Leader​, ​CEO, Airline Passenger Experience Association (APEX). “The program helps our airlines worldwide receive revenue today. It helps airline passengers that see their travel certificate investment grow quickly.”

Featured photo by John Milner/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images.

Additional resources for traveling during the coronavirus outbreak:

Features photo by John Milner/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images.

Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card

Earn 90,000 bonus miles after you spend $3,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months. Offer ends 8/3/2022.

With Status Boost™, earn 10,000 Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $25,000 in purchases on your Card in a calendar year, up to two times per year getting you closer to Medallion Status. Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels, 2X Miles at restaurants and at U.S. supermarkets and earn 1X Mile on all other eligible purchases. Terms Apply.

Apply Now
More Things to Know
  • Limited Time Offer: Earn 90,000 bonus miles after you spend $3,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months. Offer ends 8/3/2022.
  • Earn up to 20,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) with Status Boost® per year. After you spend $25,000 in purchases on your Card in a calendar year, you can earn 10,000 MQMs up to two times per year, getting you closer to Medallion® Status. MQMs are used to determine Medallion® Status and are different than miles you earn toward flights.
  • Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels.
  • Earn 2X Miles at restaurants worldwide including takeout and delivery in the U.S., and at U.S. supermarkets.
  • Earn 1X Miles on all other eligible purchases.
  • Receive a Domestic Main Cabin round-trip companion certificate each year upon renewal of your Card. Payment of the government imposed taxes and fees of no more than $80 for roundtrip domestic flights (for itineraries with up to four flight segments) is required. Baggage charges and other restrictions apply. See terms and conditions for details.
  • Enjoy your first checked bag free on Delta flights.
  • Fee Credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck® after you apply through any Authorized Enrollment Provider. If approved for Global Entry, at no additional charge, you will receive access to TSA PreCheck.
  • Enjoy an exclusive rate of $39 per person per visit to enter the Delta Sky Club® for you and up to two guests when traveling on a Delta flight.
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees.
  • $250 Annual Fee.
  • Terms Apply.
  • See Rates & Fees
Regular APR
17.24%-26.24% Variable
Annual Fee
$250
Balance Transfer Fee
N/A
Recommended Credit
Excellent/Good
Terms and restrictions apply. See rates & fees.

Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser’s responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.