Two Frequent Flier Program Changes, 1 Good 1 Bad

Bad News:

We’ll start with the bad news and I’m surprised to see no one post this, as I think it’s not customer friendly. Malaysia Airlines announced that effective January 2015 any miles accrued in their Enrich Miles program will expire after three years at the end of the month of their accrual date. It’s unfortunate where you can’t do some transaction to the account to extend the longevity of the miles. Below is what they sent to me in an email:

As we begin our new chapter in 2015, we look ahead to more exciting offers, exclusive privileges and extra convenience for you.

Please note that effective January 2015, all your accrued Enrich Miles will expire after three years, at the end of the month of their accrual date. Do keep track of your expiring miles and take advantage of our exciting redemption offers.

Your e-statement also now features your Elite Miles and Elite Sectors to spur you to move up to the next Elite Tier and unlock more benefits and privileges with Enrich.

Managing your Enrich account online is easier than ever and carries extra rewards. You can now transfer your Enrich Miles to another Enrich member online. On top of that, enjoy 15% off Enrich Miles redemption on Malaysia Airlines flights, all year round.

Have an enriching new year and look out for more offers and important updates from us!

Good News:

Qantas Airlines has announced that they are reducing the fuel surcharge because of the currently low oil prices when redeeming Qantas frequent flyer miles by up to $130 depending on the class of service. According to Qantas, this will be phased in and will be baked into the base fare go forward.

This change to Qantas’ international fare structure is in addition to its regular sales activity. Last week, the airline lowered economy fares to Asia, the US and Europe by more than $300 as part of a sale.

From tomorrow, fuel-related charges that currently apply to Frequent Flyer on Qantas and Jetstar Classic Award redemption bookings will fall by up to $110 in Economy and up to $130 in Premium Economy on some routes for a return flight. Reductions will vary across the network but average around 14 per cent.

You can read more from the press release here.

In Sum:

It’s nice to see Qantas reducing the fuel surcharge that they placed ten years ago, but it’s not because they wanted to. Their government was forcing their hand as the fuel prices have dropped dramatically. With the Malaysia Airlines policy change, it is disappointing to see a three-year limit. This is all the more reasons why transferable points are best as they give you flexibility and often no expiration date. For my US readers, keep your Citi Thank You points parked until you see a redemption to use on Malaysia Airlines or their partner airlines.

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