Results from the fifth edition of Ideaworks Reward Seat Availability Survey indicate that overall award seat availability is improving. The results reflect 7,640 booking queries made by the IdeaWorks Company at the websites of 25 frequent flyer programs. For the survey, researchers attempted to book two saver coach award seats through the airlines’ own websites on 280 different dates.
The most popular routes for each airline were checked for travel between the months of June through October 2014. Among U.S. carriers, compared to last year’s results, four showed overall improvement while availability worsened on only two carriers.
Particularly notable was Delta’s improvement of 18.6 points over last year’s survey results and United’s 8.6 point fall off. Across all 25 airlines surveyed, booking success improved by 72.4 percent. Visit http://www.insideflyer.com/link/?11499 to learn more.
Bottom line: Those conducting the survey did not attempt to book award seats through the airlines’ call centers so the survey is best viewed as identifying the programs with the best award seat availability through their website. The increased success reflected in the survey may reflect better redemption through the website rather than better award redemptions overall.