SUMA by Air Europa: A New Frequent Flier Loyalty Program

Air Europa

A new frequent flier loyalty program called SUMA by Air Europa — in which all euros accumulated on My AirEuropa will automatically be exchanged for SUMA miles when you sign up with the SUMA frequent flier loyalty program — became effective as of Monday, November 30, 2015. For every euro you spend, you will receive 40 SUMA miles. To take advantage of this exchange, sign up as a member before Thursday, March 31, 2016.

According to this message posted at its official Internet web site:

These programmes thank passengers for putting their trust in us. Whether they travel frequently or this is their first time, everyone can enjoy discounts on future journeys and other services.

Flying Blue

After 8 years of a succesful colaboration between Flying Blue and Air Europa and thanks to the experience accumulated over the last few years with Air France and KLM, we’ve decided to launch our own Loyalty Programme, SUMA.

On the other hand, you may know that Flying Blue and Air Europa are still cooperating. Flying Blue Members are allowed to enroll SUMA keeping the same level (Silver, Gold, Platinum).

Join us and discover a world full of advantages and generosity on our Air Europa flights.

And, if you want to keep your Flying Blue card, Air Europa will continue offering you the same benefits as before.

SUMA by Air Europa: A New Frequent Flier Loyalty Program

While not seemingly as generous as Copa Airlines where you could have earned up to 3,000 ConnectMiles in only seconds, joining the new SUMA frequent flier loyalty program will result in a welcome gift to you of 787 SUMA miles — the “favourite number” of Air Europa because “787 means technology, sustainability, reliability, punctuality, comfort and entertainment.” It is the Boeing 787 “Dreamliner” aircraft which has been added to the fleet “so your long-haul flight experience can be even better.”

SUMA miles are earned by the customer who flies — regardless of who purchased the ticket — and can be redeemed for airline tickets or other products and services from the SUMA frequent flier loyalty program. In the event that any of the passengers is not a member of the SUMA frequent flier loyalty program, none of the SUMA members traveling with them may claim that passenger’s SUMA miles to be credited to their own SUMA account.

Level miles — which are basically elite qualification miles — can only be earned with the purchase of flights with Air Europa or any SkyTeam Alliance airline. Level miles are not counted which come from buying the products or services provided by partners.

In addition to the SUMA Miles you earn for the flight you have purchased, you will earn a bonus of 50 percent extra SUMA miles for free as a passenger on long-haul flights — but if you only fly short distances, Air Europa assures you that “we’re not going to fall short there either. Periodically, we will keep you informed about our promotions.”

SUMA was created to thank you for your trust and also in order to improve your experience with Air Europa. “It is a programme full of details and excitement” where you will be able to use SUMA miles for flights, hotel stays, car rentals and even purchases for fuel.

The team at Air Europa will keep you informed about the different promotions that will allow you to earn more SUMA miles for the flights on which you were a passenger — applicable only on the published fare and fuel surcharge; but excluding taxes and other charges such as management fees.

Normally, SUMA miles are credited to your account within 48 hours after the flight is taken. SUMA miles are never counted at the time of purchase of the flight.

The SUMA frequent flier loyalty program offers two formats of membership cards: virtual and physical; but you can only possess one SUMA membership card.

You can use your SUMA miles or receive answers to your questions about the frequent flier loyalty program through the official Internet web site of Air Europa; the software application program for mobile devices; or through the call center via telephone at 902 401 502.

Earn SUMA Miles

For each flight operated by Air Europa on which you are a passenger, you will earn two SUMA miles for every one euro you spent for your ticket.

You cannot earn SUMA miles by redeeming SUMA miles for award travel; but you can earn the corresponding number SUMA miles on the cash portion when you combine SUMA miles and money to pay for award travel.

You can also earn SUMA miles on flights taken with airlines who are members of the SkyTeam Alliance in which Air Europa remains — and you will accumulate SUMA miles based on the distance flown in miles.

Additionally, SUMA miles can be earned by purchasing products or services from partners of Air Europa — such as:

Redeem SUMA Miles

Redeeming SUMA miles for an Air Europa ticket is not subject to any limits on class, fares or dates. If there is an empty seat, simply use your SUMA miles to book your flight reservation.

SUMA miles can be redeemed for:

  • Flight tickets from Air Europa, SkyTeam Alliance airlines or partner airlines.
  • Products and services from our non-airline partners. In this case you need to contact directly with our partners. You can consult the redemption tables and the process to follow in the Our Partners section of the website of Air Europa.

You can easily redeem SUMA miles for flights operated by Air Europa or any SkyTeam Alliance airline listed in the Redeem Miles section.

To process the redeeming of SUMA miles on Air Europa, you need to consider that:

  • To redeem your SUMA miles for flights operated by Air Europa, you will need to accumulate a minimum of 1,500 SUMA miles
  • If you want to redeem your SUMA miles for products or services from our partners, you can do so from a minimum of 2,000 SUMA miles
  • The redemption of your SUMA miles needs to be performed by you — whether for yourself or for anyone else
  • SUMA miles can be redeemed for flights operated by Air Europa — provided that seats are available — as unlike other companies, Air Europa does not have a limited quota of seats on flights purchased with SUMA miles
  • SUMA miles can be redeemed for flights in the economy class cabin or business class cabin; and this applies to Air Europa, SkyTeam Alliance airlines and partner airlines
  • You can purchase a flight, product or service either by redeeming SUMA miles; or by combining SUMA miles with money as a mixed payment

In the table below are some examples of return flights — corresponding to the Promo rate, which is the least expensive rate for award seats in the economy class cabin — so that you can calculate the SUMA miles you need to fly to any destinations served by Air Europa; and Air Europa reserves the right to modify these tables as well as the scheduling of routes and flights:

SPAIN MEDIUM HAUL LONG HAUL
ROUTE SUMA MILES from ROUTE SUMA MILES from ROUTE SUMA MILES from
Valencia – Madrid 2,571 Madrid – Rome 571 Madrid – New York (JFK) 29,483
Malaga – Madrid 3,720 Madrid – Paris (Orly) 12,024 Madrid – Sao Paulo 46,121
A Coruna – Madrid 3,452 Madrid – London 12,500 Madrid – Caracas 46,983
Mallorca – Madrid 5,714 Madrid – Amsterdam 14,286 Madrid – Montevideo 52,500
Barcelona – Tenerife North 7,586 Madrid – Tel Aviv 19,397 Madrid – Buenos Aires 53,448
Madrid – Tenerife South 8,103 Madrid – Lima 53,448
Madrid – Havana 54,310

You can redeem SUMA miles for tickets either on your own behalf or on behalf of another person. Therefore, it is not necessary for the holder of the SUMA membership card to use the flights or other services exchanged for SUMA miles.

SUMA Miles only expire when your account has been inactive for a period of 18 consecutive months — meaning no transactions had been registered either by not having accumulated SUMA miles on the purchase of a flight or a product from partner companies; or failing to redeem SUMA miles. The date to be considered for calculating the beginning of the expiration period of 18 months is reflected in your account when you access the SUMA transactions statement.

Redeeming SUMA miles to earn a ticket can be done only with SUMA miles; or with a mixed payment— combining SUMA miles and money — which can only be used on flights operated by Air Europa. Only SUMA miles can be redeemed for award travel on flights operated by airline members of the SkyTeam alliance, as there is no cash plus miles option.

To redeem your miles for Air Europa flights, you will need to accumulate a minimum of 1,500 SUMA miles. If you want to redeem your miles for products or services from our partners, you can do so — starting a minimum of 2,000 SUMA miles.

Elite Level Status and Membership Cards

There are four levels of cards: SUMA, Silver, Gold and Platinum.

Access to and maintenance of Silver, Gold or Platinum level is achieved with being a passenger on flights operated by Air Europa or those airlines which are members of the SkyTeam alliance. The assessment of the SUMA level takes into account both the number of SUMA miles earned and the number of flights made, as shown in the following table:

LEVEL SUMA MILES* FLIGHTS IN A YEAR*
Silver Elite 18,000 14
Gold Elite Plus 32,000 26
Platinum Elite Plus 60,000 50

* The number of miles and flights must be performed within 12 consecutive months; but without having to take place within a calendar year.

If you do not achieve elite status at either the Silver, Gold or Platinum levels within a period of 12 consecutive months, you cannot keep the miles or the number of flights necessary to be able to requalify for a higher elite level within the next 12 months. The computation of SUMA miles or number of flights to access a higher level takes into account the movements of SUMA miles made in your SUMA account in the last 12 months. From the moment that any movement occurs in your account, the calculation period is reactivated for another 12 months.

When you access a higher level of elite status, the SUMA miles or flights used for the calculation are not lost. The SUMA miles only cease to be counted for calculating a level increase when after a period of 12 consecutive months has elapsed, there has been no movement in the product history of the SUMA account.

The calculation of SUMA miles to go up a level is dynamic and is performed whenever new SUMA miles are credited in your SUMA account. At the same time, the period of calculation for the review of access to a higher level is updated for 12 months.

The table below sets out the advantages and conditions of each of the SUMA cards:

DESCRIPTION SUMA SILVER GOLD PLATINUM
Going up a level Not applicable 18,000 Level Miles or 14 flights 32,000 Level Miles or 26 flights 60,000 Level Miles or 50 flights
Validity of elite level Not applicable 12 months from the day the level is reached 12 months from the day the level is reached 12 months from the day the level is reached
Going down an elite level Not applicable To SUMA To Silver To Gold
Validity and Expiry of SUMA Miles After 18 months of inactivity, with no movements in the SUMA account After 18 months of inactivity, with no movements in the SUMA account After 18 months of inactivity, with no movements in the SUMA account After 18 months of inactivity
SUMA Miles Bonus Not applicable 50 percent 75 percent 100 percent
24 hour telephone service Okay Okay Okay Okay
Priority on waiting lists Okay Okay Okay Okay
Check-in at Business Class counter Okay Okay Okay
Priority boarding Okay Okay Okay
Priority baggage claim Okay Okay Okay
Extra baggage allowance (1) One piece One piece One piece
Free seat choice Okay Okay Okay
Fasttrack access Okay Okay
VIP lounge access (2) Okay Okay
Guaranteed seat (3) Okay Okay
Free upgrade to Business (4) Okay
  • (1) One piece of 23 kilograms in Economy class or one piece of 32 kilograms in Business class
  • (2) On international flights or connecting to or from an international flight operated by Air Europa or any airline belonging to the SkyTeam Alliance. The entry of one companion included in the booking is allowed.
  • (3) Class Y
  • (4) Subject to availability. Air Europa personnel at the boarding gate will consider the Platinum level of the customer and will inform you if the upgrade is possible.

Register For the SUMA Frequent Guest Loyalty Program

You can register for the SUMA frequent flier loyalty program through the official Internet web site of Air Europa; by accessing the SUMA section; or by calling 902 401 502 via telephone.

When you sign up with SUMA, you can enter all of your information — as well as that of your regular traveling companions — so that each time you book a flight reservation, the appropriate fields will be automatically completed rather than having you type them in for each new flight reservation which you booked. You will save time during the purchasing process and will never need to remember and enter the membership number of your SUMA card.

From Flying Blue to SUMA

You can keep both Flying Blue and SUMA membership cards, as they belong to completely separate frequent flier loyalty programs: the SUMA program is maintained by Air Europa; whereas the Flying Blue program is maintained by Air France and KLM Royal Dutch Airlines. When you credit miles from a flight on which you were a passenger, they will only accumulate in the frequent flier loyalty program to which you have chosen for that flight.

Your miles from Flying Blue are not transferable to SUMA, as they are two independent frequent flier loyalty programs — but you may redeem your Flying Blue miles to fly as a passenger with Air Europa or with any SkyTeam Alliance airline.

The information from your Flying Blue membership is not automatically transferred to your SUMA membership — but doing so manually is supposedly a simple process.

To match the elite status level which you earned in the Flying Blue frequent flier loyalty program in the SUMA program, you need to indicate it prior Thursday, March 31, 2016 in the corresponding section which you will find during the registration process as a SUMA member. You must first register as a SUMA member and send a scanned copy of your Flying Blue card or an account statement which shows your level and expiry date via e-mail message. You must also include the SUMA membership number you obtained when signing up with SUMA.

Your elite level status in the SUMA frequent flier loyalty program which was matched from your Flying Blue elite level status will remain dependent upon:

  • Whatever the level review date you have in Flying Blue.
  • Air Europa will provide an expiry period of 12 months from the day your documents are received and have verified and processed the level change, as noted in the previous question.
  • In your new SUMA card — whether via the physical card or the virtual card from your mobile software application program — you will see details on the new expiration date of your elite status level in SUMA.

Summary

There does not seem to be much that is interesting pertaining to the SUMA frequent flier loyalty program. It appears that elite level status matches are only available to members of the Flying Blue frequent flier loyalty program; and the earnings and redemptions initially do not appear to stand out from other frequent flier loyalty programs.

Copa Airlines similarly launched its own frequent flier loyalty program instead of remaining fixed to the United Airlines MileagePlus frequent flier loyalty program — but unlike SUMA, at least a fairly aggressive incentive for attracting new members was offered.

Perhaps that is a major reason for the apparent lack of fanfare pertaining to the recent launch of the SUMA frequent flier loyalty program…?

Photograph ©2014 by Brian Cohen.

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