AQDs: AC now wants us to meet minimum spends.

Discussion in 'Air Canada | Aeroplan' started by mevlannen, Nov 23, 2015.  |  Print Topic

  1. mevlannen
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    mevlannen Silver Member

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  2. ACMM
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    ACMM Gold Member

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    Not surprising. Glad that at this time my plans are not to requalify for 2017
     
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  3. mevlannen
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    mevlannen Silver Member

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    So, then, if we're going to cross paths, it would be best to plan for it to happen before the end of 2016? I do from time to time go through YYZ, and have even been known to take the Rocket into the city so that I might scarf a brunch with friends.

    You're also welcome to come have a beer in our small village on northern Salishaan (aka Vancouver island).
     
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  4. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    Oof...$20k for top tier. That stings.
     
  5. ACMM
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    ACMM Gold Member

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    Work has no interest for me anymore aside from the paycheque :) I want to retire as soon as I can and fly (revenue) on any airline I choose - not AC unless it suits :)
    Our chances of crossing paths are slim to none but I wish you all the best :)
     
  6. mevlannen
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    mevlannen Silver Member

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    ACMM -- probably bids fair that we shall never meet, unless you take a sudden interest in the global coking-coal trade.

    Next year's big plan is to burn off those Aeropesos on the annual holiday-trips. I am still waiting for the floating railway-bridge from Salishaan to North America, so that I might travel in style in a private railway-car. Days are, I suspect that I've missed my proper time-period by at least 150 years in ether direction.

    I like my work; it keeps my brain ticking-over in a way that the Times crossword puzzle does not. On the other hand, whether my work likes me or not depends upon the whim of global commodity markets, and right now, we seem to be headed full-tilt for 1934 all over again.

    Hey, Air Canada: have fun with those half-empty aircraft!
     
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  7. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    The elite program doesn't fill the planes.
     
  8. YULtide

    YULtide Gold Member

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    Helps fill the front part.
     
  9. YULtide

    YULtide Gold Member

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    Stings big time. From 12 cents per mile for the lower tiers to 20 cents for Super Elite. That is, to qualify on minimum spend and mileage that's what it costs. Clearly it won't be possible to qualify for Super Elite without some Latitude and paid business tickets. Flex only won't do it unless you're putting on way over the minimum mileage.

    The one silver lining is that codeshare spending counts, so those who do a lot of cross border trips and were getting dinged by all the United codesharing will at least get a sop thrown to them as long as they book on AC.
     
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  10. Canadi>n
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    Canadi>n Gold Member

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    "The one silver lining is that codeshare spending counts, so those who do a lot of cross border trips and were getting dinged by all the United codesharing will at least get a sop thrown to them as long as they book on AC."

    My understanding of the codeshare situation is that the flight must be ticketed on AC 014 stock. Which means you can't book a UA flight number on AC metal and get the dollar credit since UA gets the money from that flight. However, you can fly and get dollar credit if it has an AC flight number but is on UA metal, again as long as it was ticketed on AC stock.
     
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  11. Absolute99

    Absolute99 Gold Member

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    That's my understanding as well - your flight number must have an AC flight number.
     
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  12. HaveMilesWillTravel
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    HaveMilesWillTravel Gold Member

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    Keeps the riffraff (aka me) out of the top level. UA achieved that with a lower number, but as a self-paying leisure traveler I won't even dream of accidentally getting into the vicinity of $20k just in airfare spend.
     
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  13. YULtide

    YULtide Gold Member

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    That's not what the FAQ says. (Bold added)

    So if it's AC metal you get the AQDs (sounds like a terminal illness) regardless of how you bought the ticket. But if it's a codeshare on non-AC metal you have to purchase the ticket through Air Canada with the magic 014 ticket number.
     
  14. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    Anything operated by AC earns AQDs, regardless of ticketing stock or marketing carrier.

    Anything ticketed on 014 AND marketed by AC, even if flying on OAL (*A) metal earns AQDs.

    Not really.
     
    Last edited: Nov 24, 2015
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  15. mevlannen
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    mevlannen Silver Member

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    <grf> Spend is an interesting thing: perhaps half of my dollars come from my pocket, and the other half from my (erstwhile) employer. At a guess, lacking access to my expense sheets, the first 95 segments this year cost ca. $7400 Canadian -- that's a rock-bottom spend for SE, certainly.

    At the moment I am well north of 140 segments; shall be 152 on the day that I retire next month.

    $20,000 spend, in retirement? Unlikely. Commuting via daisy-chains of Dash flights on a near-weekly basis? Also unlikely.

    Someone upthread (was it you, ACMM?) opined that perhaps AC were planning to separate the SEs from the E 'riff-raff'. Well, they're certainly on track to divest themselves of riff-raff such as my own good self, who most definitely does not have all that much in the way of disposable cash to spend upon services (not products!) such as discretionary air travel. </grf>
     
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  16. mevlannen
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    mevlannen Silver Member

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    Data point for yon Wandering Aramean:

    At least out here in the Western Triangle, I've lately seen a fair number of vacancies in the J-cabin. Whether that means that demand has fallen off, or that would-be upgraders have run out of certs, is not knowable.

    Also of note, one of the concierges out West (shan't name the station, for their well-being) told me that AC has the ability to seat-block around passengers, and that the concierges have access to that facility. An interesting thing, if true. I do certainly notice that I shall often have the bulkhead row to myself, although as much an anything else that could indicate that such seating is less-desirable in the eyes of some people.
     
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  17. YULtide

    YULtide Gold Member

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    The $20,000 spend for SE compares to $12,000 for United Premier 1K status (and which the progression from P25K through E75K would suggest). I wonder if it's a trial balloon like the drop in minimum miles from 500 to 0 which was adjusted up to 250 after the howls a couple of years ago? Think it will settle out at, say, $15,000?

    The increase in empty J seats this year (I notice the same thing, Mevlannen) will be mirrored in 2017 with a drop in the number of SEs.
     
  18. tomh009
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    tomh009 Gold Member

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    US$12K is really C$15K, so UA is 25% lower. I think UA GS is something like US$25K.

    If you're mostly flying AC metal or AC codeshares, C$20K isn't really that outrageous. Even in my case, flying corporate-mandated lowest fares for a total of little over 100K miles this year, my estimate of my AQD is something like $20K. Most of my flights the non-AC fees and taxes are only 10-15%.

    Now, for people mostly flying *A partner airlines, this is far worse. They will have a choice of flying more AC (possible for some, not others), dropping down a level or to -- or switching to a different airline or program.

    Note that switching to the UA program but keeping your *A flight pattern the same isn't much of a loss for AC: they will still get the same revenues, but UA will bear the program costs. (Potential future loyalty is in question, of course.)
     
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  19. tomh009
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    tomh009 Gold Member

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    I haven't seen this flying out of YYZ recently. Recent flights to DFW, PHX and HND have all flown with full J. (The YYZ-EWR milk run frequently has some empty J seats though.)
     
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  20. londoncalling

    londoncalling Silver Member

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    Yuletide look at some of the loads on major Asian routes and you will see the SE count does not really matter. Same goes for major European routes. And that is where AC makes its money on premium pax. I am happy about the revenue spend for status as it is only common sense.
     
  21. YULtide

    YULtide Gold Member

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    I'm sure the routes you mention travel with full J cabins, but Mevlannen and I have both noticed empty seats in J in Western Canada this year, which is what I was commenting on.

    Whether revenue spend for status is common sense or not may be debatable, but it's obviously a feature that's here to stay. However, the big jump from $9000 for E75K to $20,000 for SE does strike me as a bit much. I can only imagine that they're trying to reduce the number of people who achieve SE. Those who fly well over 100,000 miles will manage it, but those who just make the mileage will find the spend requirement a barrier, I think.

    With or without minimum spend, you still have to fly 100,000 miles to get the status, and with this year's 50,000 AC metal requirement that should imply a fair bit of revenue for AC. For next year, one theoretically doesn't need to fly AC at all to get status, as long as one flies enough miles on Star Alliance carriers with the right amount of spend on AC code-shares per status level.

    All that said, what we still don't know is what the benefits will look like.
     
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  22. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    Equating empty business class seats with a drop in elites, particularly as the rules for upgrading (or, in AC's case, earning eUpgrade certs) have changed, is a misguided metric IMO.
     
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  23. YULtide

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    I guess my comment wasn't clear enough. I wasn't equating empty J seats with a drop in elites. I was trying to suggest that just as we have observed an anecdotal drop in the apparent number of people occupying J on upgrades in 2015, I expect we will see a similar drop in the number of Super Elites in 2017. Both appear to be Air Canada's plan for the future of Altitude.
     
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  24. londoncalling

    londoncalling Silver Member

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    I would suggest the drop in people sitting up in J is due to the tighter control of EUG certs for those who have less status than a SE. I have earned moe than enough with passes and flying J/C/D to Asia and a B class pass to Europe.
    AC may want fewer SE'S but will expect more revenue from those who continue to be top tier. They also expect a lot of people will pay more to reap the "benefits" of SE which are going to improve as the dream liners take hold of their fleet once they are all delivered. This is purely an attempt to differentiate the J product which makes them a lot of money.
     
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  25. YULtide

    YULtide Gold Member

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    Clearly at 235k miles ytd you're the sort of flyer AC is courting. And that's perfectly fine. It's their programme and I have little doubt that they have calculated the cost/benefit ratio of courting high flyers versus continually devaluing of the benefits of the mere Elite. Whether the benefits of SE do improve, which would be a reversal of course, remains to be seen.
     

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