An answer to "Which program to credit to?" for *A

Discussion in 'Star Alliance' started by Wandering Aramean, Jun 22, 2011.  |  Print Topic

  1. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    Right now it is just an answer, not the answer, but I'm working on that. ;)

    I've got a whole ton of data about earning rates for 7 of the 27ish carriers in *A right now. Today's project was to create an interface where any particular route/fare/operating carrier combination could be input and it would calculate the various earning permutations. Especially at the very high and very low fares the earning rates can vary wildly so being able to compare them was something I thought was useful. Here's an example of an LH F fare from FRA-MCO:
    Code:
    Carrier	Status	Base	EQMs	RDMs
    A3	Gold	4743	14229	14229
    A3	Blue	4743	14229	14229
    A3	General Member	4743	14229	14229
    AC	Super Elite	4743	7114	8300
    AC	Elite	4743	7114	8300
    AC	Prestige	4743	7114	8300
    AC	General Member	4743	7114	8300
    BD	Blue	4743	14229	14229
    BD	Gold	4743	14229	15415
    BD	Silver	4743	14229	15415
    CO	General Member	4743	7114	7114
    CO	General Member+PresPlusCC	4743	7114	7114
    CO	Silver Elite	4743	7114	8300
    CO	Silver Elite+PresPlusCC	4743	7114	8300
    CO	Platinum Elite+PresPlusCC	4743	7114	11858
    CO	Pres. Platinum+PresPlusCC	4743	7114	11858
    CO	Gold Elite+PresPlusCC	4743	7114	11858
    CO	Presidential Platinum	4743	7114	11858
    CO	Platinum Elite	4743	7114	11858
    CO	Gold Elite	4743	7114	11858
    UA	General Member	4743	7114	7114
    UA	Premier	4743	7114	8300
    UA	1K	4743	7114	11858
    UA	Premier Executive	4743	7114	11858
    US	Chairmans Preferred	4743	7114	7114
    US	Platinum Elite	4743	7114	7114
    US	Gold Elite	4743	7114	7114
    US	Silver Elite	4743	7114	7114
    US	General Member	4743	7114	7114
    Right now I've got data from AC, A3, BD, LH, US, UA and CO in there and I'm working on adding more. Give it a look and let me know if you see anything wonky or if you think it is a complete waste of time. :eek:

    http://www.wandr.me/Tools/Frequent_Flier_Mileage_Earning_Options.aspx

    Sorry the "export" formatting sucks; I guess I'll add that to the bug list for now.
     
  2. NYBanker
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    NYBanker Gold Member

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    That's a great table. Go Aegean!!

    This really highlights the difference in accruing. Though not a *A question, a similar difference in accrual rate is one of the reasons why I switched from BA to AA for my primary ow carrier.

    Take this one flight, add in A3's 1,000 mile rdm/eqm sign up bonus, and you're almost to 3 years of star gold! (20k eqm is all that's needed on a3.)

    Against A3's easy qualifications, however, are what sound to be some bloody awful redemption rules.
     
  3. Scottrick
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    Scottrick Gold Member

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    I like it, but sometimes I don't need to know all the possible options. If there were a box for checking elite status in different plans, you could eliminate two or three unnecessary lines for each carrier.

    As for the formatting, that shouldn't be too hard to fix. Since it's tab-delimited, you could probably just add tabs to the name of each program (e.g., change "Premier" to "Premier [tab] [tab]"). But either you already know that or I'm showing off how little programming knowledge I've retained from college. :oops:
     
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  4. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    Indeed, this would be the easiest fix. My problem there is that I'm not very good on the profile stuff (and I don't really want to save all your statii in my database) so I'm trying to avoid it. I also am working with another group that can probably make that part work even easier but nothing confirmed there yet. Hopefully soon. Or I'll just get over it and make the profile thing happen.

    Yeah...the hard part is making it "know" what the longest status is and then padding all those entries to be that big. I'm pretty sure I know how to do that; I just have to actually do it. And I'm having more fun adding more programs into the mix. I just added earning on OZ. :cool:
     
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  5. Scottrick
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    Scottrick Gold Member

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    Oh, I don't care if you create a saved profile. It seems to me that most people would already be set on the itinerary and just want to know where to credit it, so they won't be running several options through at once. It should be fine to force people to select their status in each rewards program every time the run the app.
     
  6. sniklec
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    sniklec Silver Member

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    Yes, very useful, especially for someone ambivalent about *A like me.

    As mentioned in a previous thread, A3 earning for TK is using the outdated, pre-Comfort Class accrual.
     
  7. Rob
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    Rob Gold Member

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    Would it also be shorter if you combine elite levels that have the same earning rates? E.g. UA 1K and Premier Executive will earn the same amount of miles, so maybe just one line for 1K/Premier Exec is all that's necessary.
     
  8. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    Thanks for the reminder on this. It turns out that the A3 earning rates for AC, UA and BD had also changed slightly since I originally compiled the data. All four are now updated in the system.
    It would definitely be shorter. That said, the way I'm generating the data would make that very difficult to produce. I first generate a list of all the carrier/status combinations I have rates for and then I calculate the points for each based on the route. Flattening the table after the fact based on the same numbers in all three columns would be harder to calculate for me right now. I will try to come up with a better solution for this display but I do not think this will be it.
     
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  9. Rob
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    Rob Gold Member

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    I guess my point was more that there is never a time (right now) when Premier Executives and 1Ks will earn different miles for the same ticket, so instead of having a UA/PrExec combination and a UA/1K combination, just have a UA/1kPrExec combination.
     
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  10. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    Gotcha...I guess I could combine them but given the potential for things to vary at some point (like how CO credits US miles differently for Gold/Plat but otherwise they're identical) I'm inclined to keep all the data there. I'd rather have the flexibility somewhere down the line if things change than condense things too much now.
     
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  11. MSPeconomist
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    MSPeconomist Gold Member

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    This example seems to confirm what I've suspected for a while: A3 is the new BD in *A.
     
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  12. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    But have you looked at their redemption rates?

    (n.b. I haven't but that was what was really awesome about BD, not just the earning side).
     
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  13. MSPeconomist
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    MSPeconomist Gold Member

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    Nope, because I always heard that BD customer service on award tickets was bad, so that I considered BD as primarily being advantageous for (non-USA based) alliance status. My impression was that people used them as an easy way to get *Gold or non-USA based *Gold for lounge access. The latter especially applies to people who also have elite status on their favorite USA-based *A carrier for upgrades or who either care more about lounges than upgrades or who realistically won't get many upgrades anyway (elite-heavy routes or not much hope of even mid-tier status). US supposedly has some good awards (no additional miles for IFC) but again there can be some problems in actually getting and using them.
     
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  14. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    Getting very off-topic here, US does charge F rates for F awards except for 3-cabin flights on domestic routes.

    And I guess I've been more lucky than not with the ICC in getting what I want when I know the seats are available.
     
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  15. NYBanker
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    NYBanker Gold Member

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    Correct. They have some stringent requirements, including 14-day advanced booking and basically no changes allowed to issued award tickets.
     
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  16. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    The BD 14-day advance definitely doesn't apply if you are gold. I've booked 2-3 days out and been just fine.
     
  17. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    A few more updates as of today. The carriers covered now include:
    • UA
    • US
    • A3
    • AC
    • TP
    • LH
    • BD
    • CO
    • OZ

    Any requests on a specific program to include next? Choices are:
    • NH
    • JJ
    • NZ
    • JK
    • SK
    • MS
    • SQ
    • TG
    • SA
    • TK
     
  18. NYBanker
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    NYBanker Gold Member

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    JJ, please.
     
  19. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    Just looked at their site. The data for partner earnings doesn't seem to be published (though the text suggests it is there) and the earning rates on JJ metal are a wacky fixed rate per region. I'm not sure I've got the structure in my systems to handle that. Definitely not immediately.

    Sorry.
     
  20. MSPeconomist
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    MSPeconomist Gold Member

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    If I try to use this tool to check mileage earnings of a single itinerary when credited to different *A programs, it's very frustrating that every time I change the FF program I must go and correct the operating carrier for each flight segment. For example, checking the SMD3 European flights, I start with LH M&M and find the miles. If I next want to compare this to what would happen if I were to credit to A3 instead, when I change the FF program from LH to A3, the computer automatically changes every flight segment to being operated by A3, meaning that I must change each segment back to being a LH flight. Very time consuming and frustrating when you're trying to compare a bunch of *A FF programs, which I think is the primary purpose of the tool!
     
  21. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    I assume that you're talking about the full itinerary calculator (http://www.wandr.me/Tools/Advanced_Trip_Calculator.aspx) and not the tool referenced in the first post of this thread (mostly because this one doesn't have room for multiple segments). I made the decision to have the calculator auto-switch to the crediting program because that seemed most likely to me where the calculator would be going anyways. I suppose I can take away that feature if it really bothers people.
     
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  22. MSPeconomist
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    MSPeconomist Gold Member

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    Yes, sorry, I found the link for the multiple segment calculator somewhere else, shortly before seeing this thread. To me it seems logical that it you've fed in an itinerary, the operating carriers would be fixed as you compare earning across FF programs. There are only a few cases where the choice you'd be investigating would be whether to fly an entire itinerary on one carrier's metal versus all on another *A carrier's metal. In the case I was investigating, A3 does not fly FRA-ORD AFAIK, so the reversion to all A3 flights was almost amusing.
     
  23. PVDtoDEL

    PVDtoDEL Active Member

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    A3s redemption rates are ok - there are some good deals and some bad.
    Once you book, you have no flexibility at all though, with the exception of IRROPS.
    But so far, I am very happy with my A3 Gold. They are proffesional when replying to emails and have solved any miscredited flights promptly.
     

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