Problem with LX Award Space Reporting

Discussion in 'ExpertFlyer' started by Explore, Sep 23, 2011.  |  Print Topic

  1. Explore
    Original Member

    Explore Silver Member

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    Swiss Airlines has more than one award bucket per service class. One bucket is offered to most Star Alliance FF programs. The other bucket is reportedly restricted to LH/LX Miles and More members.

    Clearly, Expert Flyer reports the M&M bucket, which isn't very useful to most of its subscribers. They want to know when (if ever!), Star Alliance inventory opens up. The ANA Tool doesn't duplicate EF's findings.

    EF should be capable of reporting restricted Star Alliance award inventory offered by LX, SQ, and possibly others, since EF reports restricted private inventory offered by U.S. airlines to their elites.

    Any prospect of that happening?
     
  2. ExpertFlyer Voice

    ExpertFlyer Voice Z Representative

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    You are correct, we show the LX award inventory from the M&M point of view. We note that at the top of the results page when you do an LX award search:

    "Info: SWISS Award availability reflects availability for Miles & More members. Availability to members of partner airlines may be less."

    To our knowledge, there are not seperate award classes for the Star Alliance award inventory vs the M&M award inventory, they just show different results depending on who's asking, much like differences in Point of Sale of regular fare classes depending upon who is asking for the availability.
     
  3. Scottrick
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    Scottrick Gold Member

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    Yes, but there clearly are differences in award availability that can be accessed. I signed up for a trial version of EF, but I didn't pay for a subscription precisely because of the SWISS availability issue.

    Instead, KVS got my money because I can see SWISS availability through both AC and ANA. There's no reason why EF can't do the same thing, accessing these sites to give us partner award availability for SWISS. I would really rather use EF because I think it has a better interface and some other useful tools, but I can't do that until this issue is addressed.
     
  4. ExpertFlyer Voice

    ExpertFlyer Voice Z Representative

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    AC and ANA show the Star Alliance point of view because that is what LX/LH gives them. Signing up for a paid tool is not required to see that inventory, it is available for free on the respective airlines websites, and also via the free tier of AwardNexus. We primarily get our data from the GDSs, not by screen scraping airline websites, so there is a reason why we have one but not the other.

    The tradeoff is that by being the only service to have direct access to the GDS, we can show information that no other service or website can, like DL and AA upgrade inventory, consistent detailed graphical seat maps for over 120 airlines, and offer unique services, like Flight and Seat Alerts, and as you noted, allows us to present a more unified and easier to use UI. We would like to do/show everything as well, but unfortunately the travel industry wasn't set up to make it easy.
     
  5. Scottrick
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    Scottrick Gold Member

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    True, I am not denying you have many great services. For now, though, with only enough resources to pay for only KVS or EF, I find KVS more useful. AC and ANA may have these things for free, but I find them difficult to use. Even if I think KVS doesn't have the best UI, at least it's an improvement. If EF were to provide some of the things that KVS provides, I think you could attract more business, but that may or may not happen since you rely on different sources of information.
     
  6. ExpertFlyer Voice

    ExpertFlyer Voice Z Representative

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    If it's a question of money then you should look at the free version of AwardNexus as a supplement to ExpertFlyer. It provides the same ANA/AC/CO Star Alliance award information as the airline websites, with more EF like features & UI, such as multi-day searching. Just something else to keep in mind, but ultimately you have to do what’s right for you.
     
  7. Explore
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    Explore Silver Member

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    Thanks for the response. I do value EF - it's definitely more user-friendly than the alternatives. Really a great site - a huge step up from several years ago. AwardNexus isn't as well designed, though they seem to be willing to listen to suggestions.
     

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