EZE-HKG MR dumb idea?

Discussion in 'Mileage Runs/Travel Hacking' started by fotosdelviaje, Mar 19, 2012.  |  Print Topic

  1. fotosdelviaje

    fotosdelviaje Silver Member

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    Hello, I keep asking a thousand questions, but I am eager to learn quickly and am trying hundreds of things every day. Just got stuck with this one:

    I'm considering a one way EZE-HKG. Playing with ITA got EZE-SCL-YYZ-YVR-HKG which is 14512 mi at $2018 or 14.4CPM. April 9th. I used routing codes "ac ac ac / f bc=w". Not great but I think it can be improved.

    ITA breaks the fare in BUE to YVR and YVR to HKG. I'm looking at the fare rules and trying to add a few more segments within Canada to add miles. Should I be looking into the Transfer restrictions or Stopover restrictions? I keep trying to add one loop between the east and west coasts but I can't get the same fare to show.

    Any tricks I should know to make that work?

    Thanks in advance. Hope I can give back to the community soon.
     
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  2. wrxmom

    wrxmom Gold Member

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    That's an extremely high cost per mile. :(
     
  3. fotosdelviaje

    fotosdelviaje Silver Member

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    Yes, I know it's nowhere near being a MR. But I am planning to get to HKG or NRT (actually both, but one of them first) and just trying to maximise the amount of miles I can get. This so far is the best I have been able to do.

    The transfer rules allow several transfers in each segment, and my interpretation is that it would allow me to add a Canadian loop to my trip and up the miles a lot. Is my hypothesis reasonable?

    Thank you wrxmom.
     
  4. Tenmoc
    Original Member

    Tenmoc Gold Member

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    If you're wanting to take the trip and you're looking to maximize miles for a decent cost, compare the miles/money for just getting there to the extramiles/extramoney. This will let you know if the addon is "worth it". If I can add on miles for less than 3cents each i will usually do it. Even if the total cost of the trip is 10cents per, for example.

    Also, i'm not familiar with AC, but is there a reason you are focusing on booking class w?
     
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  5. fotosdelviaje

    fotosdelviaje Silver Member

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    Thanks Tenmoc for your reply. I am looking at crediting the miles to OZ, as it seems the easiest way for me to get *G, and I am avoiding classes N,P,G,E and A, which only credit 50%. I found fares in classes W and Q (both 100%), with W seeming more flexible in the stops I could add. You could change the routing code to ac ac ac / f ~bc=n&~bc=p&~bc=g&~bc=e&~bc=a and you would get the same result.

    Still I am only able to add stops on the way from YYZ to YVR, but not a west to east loop, so the benefit is minimal. Would this be a Matrix limitation? I am also still a bit lost with Stopover and Transfer restrictions, does anyone know any good resource to learn more about those?

    Your way of seeing the extramiles/extramoney make a lot of sense, I will estimate it that way from now on.

    Thanks!
     
  6. kyunbit
    Original Member

    kyunbit Silver Member

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    normally round trip tickets have lower cpm. book a RT if you can.
     
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  7. fotosdelviaje

    fotosdelviaje Silver Member

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    This is one of the reasons why my situation is making it hard for me to improve my mile-fu. I will very rarely be flying RT; I am usually moving in one direction and at a pretty slow pace. For more info, please see my Newbie Guide post :)

    Thanks!
     
  8. ArizonaGuy
    Original Member

    ArizonaGuy Silver Member

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    Wouldn't the easiest way to *G still be to credit these miles to A3? 20K for *G, or 19K assuming they're still giving away 1K just for signing up.

    I know OZ gives *G for something like 40K and you've got two years to hit it. TK has something similar but requalifying is even easier.
     
  9. fotosdelviaje

    fotosdelviaje Silver Member

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    Thanks ArizonaGuy for the tip! I will take a better look at A3. Sounds like I could be *G this year!
     
  10. Santander

    Santander Silver Member

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    Unless you can get YYZ-YUL-YVR (and even then...), I wouldn't bother with adding any connections between YYZ and YVR. YWG, YYC and even YEG aren't going to add much mileage for it to be worth it. It might not even end up being worth the airport improvement fees, etc. If you just want easy *G, why not just do a status challenge on US? Similar qualification (initially) as A3, and much better redemption options. In your second year you could migrate to the A3 FFP before US makes the almost inevitable move to OW.
     
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  11. fotosdelviaje

    fotosdelviaje Silver Member

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    Thanks Santander for your reply! I am taking a look at it. In general I have stayed away from US-based airlines when choosing a FFP because I am not based in the US and will very rarely visit it. Most of my travel will be between Asia, Europe and the Pacific, so I figured I am better off choosing an airline with a strong presence in those regions.

    How are redemption options better in US than A3?

    Thank you!
     
  12. Santander

    Santander Silver Member

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    I will admit that I'm not an expert on A3 so someone please correct me if I say something out of line.

    US has better earning potential than A3. More fares earn 100% miles on US compared to A3. In addition, US offers the opportunity to buy miles at a cheap price (cheap enough to warrant buying them) during certain promotion periods and they also have other promotions like Grand Slam which can let you earn a few thousand extra US miles with just a few clicks on the Internet. I don't live in the US and I still got a good chunk of points from last year's Grand Slam. US also lets you earn miles through their online shopping portal, eating out and online surveys (e-Rewards, e-Miles). While they may be leaving *A in the foreseeable future (think 2013, not 2012), their award redemption chart is quite reasonable and they do not charge fuel surcharges on award tickets. I think US and UA are the only *A airlines which still don't charge YQ for all award tickets. These fees and surcharges can really add up on award travel and if you earn/redeem through US you can save a lot of money and miles compared to redeeming in most *A FFPs.
     
  13. fotosdelviaje

    fotosdelviaje Silver Member

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    Thanks Santander, that's very valuable information! I had no idea about those details.

    Is it certain that US will move to Oneworld? I am hesitant to join a FFP that only has a lifespan of a year or so.

    Would you recommend UA at all?
     
  14. MSPeconomist
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    MSPeconomist Gold Member

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    This is all probably true, but the big advantage of A3 is that it gives you *Gold status and all of its benefits with only 19,000 status miles versus 50,000 for the UA and US programs, plus if you have *Gold through UA or US, you cannot access their lounges based on *A *Gold status when flying USA domestic flights. The downside is that you give up status-based ugrades when flying US or UA respectively.
     
  15. Santander

    Santander Silver Member

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    If US does buy AA, their route network would pretty much completely overlap with UA. US can't exactly kick UA out of *A and OW only has one USA-based carrier, AA. Everything adds up to US joining Oneworld if/when they merge with AA.

    UA is not a bad programme for earning/burning miles. I think award blocking has reared its ugly head again so UA members cannot redeem for all available *A awards, only the ones UA will let them "see". The UA elite programme has also been shaken up after the merger with CO. This is a turbulent time for UA at best and I'd warn you to research more deeply into what current UA flyers are saying before you dive in.
     
  16. Santander

    Santander Silver Member

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    Yeah, the reason why I even brought up US is that OP could get *G on US with a status challenge for 15k miles in 90 days. If OP wants to concentrate his flying within those 90 days, it is an alternative. However, your point about the domestic US lounge access still stands. I'm so used to having automatic *G access that I overlooked that limitation in the US-based FFPs.
     
  17. Wandering Aramean
    Original Member

    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    In addition to transfer restrictions (the number of segments you are permitted) and stopover restrictions (how often you can be in one place more than 23:59) you also need to understand the routing rules. Those are published separately from the fare rules and I don't know of any free resources for them these days. The routing rules will either specify a sequence of airport codes indicating what connections are permitted or a MPM distance, where MPM means maximum permitted mileage. For MPM fares you pay a penalty for exceeding that number or it won't book at all. The routing rules generally limit just how much fun you can have with the system as much as the transfer restrictions do.
     
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  18. fotosdelviaje

    fotosdelviaje Silver Member

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    Thank you Wantering Aramean, I was having a hard time finding the meaning of those two.

    What tools do you recommend to find out the routing rules?
     
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  19. AA_EXP09

    AA_EXP09 Gold Member

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    Call a TA or use KVS.
     
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  20. fotosdelviaje

    fotosdelviaje Silver Member

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    Thank you AA_EXP09.
     
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  21. YULtraveller

    YULtraveller Silver Member

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    fotosdelviaje,

    One source of fare rules can be obtained from a corporate travel online booking tool (say, from CWT, Amex, etc.), if you have access to one. However, I can't see access to the routing rules.

    For example, W0LXBO on AC for EZE-HKG (via YYZ) - perhaps a bit late for your purposes - are (excerpt):

    STOPOVERS

    • ORIGINATING CANADA - 2 STOPOVERS PERMITTED ON THE PRICING UNIT LIMITED TO 1 FREE AND 1 AT CAD 90.00. ORIGINATING SOUTH AMERICA - 2 STOPOVERS PERMITTED ON THE PRICING UNIT LIMITED TO 1 FREE AND 1 AT USD 75.00.
    TRANSFERS

    • 8 TRANSFERS PERMITTED ON THE PRICING UNIT - 4 IN EACH DIRECTION ANY COMBINATION OF THE FOLLOWING - 8 ONLINE ON AC 8 ONLINE EXCLUDING AC 8 INTERLINE INCLUDING AC. FARE BREAK AND EMBEDDED SURFACE SECTORS NOT PERMITTED ON THE FARE COMPONENT.
    Now, how to interpret this for your purposes is another story. I, for one, would be very interested in learning.
     
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  22. fotosdelviaje

    fotosdelviaje Silver Member

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    Thanks YULtraveller,

    I can see those rules in Matrix by clicking "Fare Rules" in the last screen. But I am still at a loss in interpreting them. I get the stopovers, but still don't understand what is meant by "transfers".

    I will research deeper though.
     
  23. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    A transfer is just a connection in this context.
     
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  24. fotosdelviaje

    fotosdelviaje Silver Member

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    Thank you Wandering Aramean. That is what I initially thought but then I had problems trying to apply those rules in Matrix. I guess it is a matter of practice.
     

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