Status buyback EQMs -- $0.84/eqm!

Discussion in 'United Airlines | MileagePlus' started by unavaca, Jan 24, 2012.  |  Print Topic

  1. unavaca
    Original Member

    unavaca Gold Member

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    I got this on my "personalized" 2012 status page:

    1-24-2012 9-17-48 AM.jpg

    84 cents per EQM at the lowest level or 20 cents per EQM at the highest level. Elite maximizer and MRs don't seem so bad now, eh?
     
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  2. NYCUA1K

    NYCUA1K Gold Member

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    This is when it feels like "loyalty" just flows one way: from the customers to the airlines. If someone flew 99,000 EQMs or did 119 segments, you would think that an airline would appreciate this and award them the 1K EQM or 1 EQS needed to requalify their status, would you not?!

    MRs are definitely cheaper!
     
  3. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    Was this to buy up for topping off last year? How short were you?

    Or is this for new purchases to count against the 2012 program?

    And I'm willing to bet that in some cases they do. But not in all cases.

    Historically CO had a policy of only offering the buy-up to folks who were not only close to the status tier threshold but who also were higher revenue customers within that pool. So if you were at 70K EQMs and spent $7000 to get there you might be more valuable to the company than someone who spent $2500 to get to the same point. It is possible that only the $7000 customer would get the offer.

    Just showing up and taking a lot of flights doesn't necessarily make you loyal to a company, at least not in the way that is useful to the company. It is not surprising that companies don't always want to reward such customers.
     
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  4. NYCUA1K

    NYCUA1K Gold Member

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    In other words, I am less deserving and less loyal than a rich guy who can afford to spend $7,000 in larger bills a few times, because I am a little guy who spent $7,000 in little bills many times with the same airline. Hmmm....but their contributions to the airline's bottom is the same, but one (the little guy) stuck with the airline even if he could not easily afford to, or could have flown cheaper with another airline...Seems to me like that is loyalty, no?

    I know that some folks have been awarded the miles they were short by to requalify status, and that some others are targeted for buy-ups, but I hope the rationale for doing so is not the one you offered...
     
  5. Ygor
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    Ygor Gold Member

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    This is to top off last year.
    I was short 15,000 miles (it was a award travel year) of Platinum, and the email offered me buy 15,000 EQS/EQM for a bargain of $2637

    Yeah, thanks, but no thanks. It will suck to be a gold for the first time in years, but I will live.

    Edit: I am def not a high spend costumer.
     
  6. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    You must have misread the part where I specifically stated that the total dollar spend, not the number of transactions to get there, is what mattered. And, yes, the customer who spends $7000 is more valuable than one who spends $2500 for the same amount of flying. A customer who spends $7000 on one flight is also generally more valuable than a customer who spends $7000 acorss 20 flights. Maybe not more "loyal" but likely more valuable to the company.
     
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  7. United Connection

    United Connection Silver Member

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    Not if you never hear from the one flight customer again....
     
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  8. daemon14

    daemon14 Gold Member

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    Well then they won't be using their status often, will they?
     
  9. NYCUA1K

    NYCUA1K Gold Member

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    You mean the status, which, as well-to-do fat cats, they could have afforded without depending on the largesse of the airline?

    Let's keep heaping it on those who already have plenty; it's the American way!
     
  10. KenInEscazu

    KenInEscazu Gold Member

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    "Greed has created more jobs than government ever has or ever will." (Paraphrased) - Rush Limbaugh

    I have an admission to make. I like our successful (rich) customers better than our struggling (poor) ones. It's a pain to have to sit and try card after card until one is approved, or to process a request for return authorization for a $10 item. I'm not cold hearted, but I do value my time and that of my employees.

    Sorry NYCUA1K... Nothing personal... Just hit one of my hot buttons. I'm not a fat cat, but I plan to indulge in it when I am. Humbly.... Of course. :D
     
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  11. NYCUA1K

    NYCUA1K Gold Member

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    Let's keep heaping it on those who already have plenty; it's the American way!

    Mitt Romney: $21M/year; tax rate: 13.9%
    Joe Sixpack: $50K/yr; tax rate: 15%

    Offered without commentary but quoting Limbaugh loses one's credibility in the larger population off the bat...;)
     
  12. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    I'm not so sure of that.

    A customer who flies a lot on very cheap fares becomes quite expensive to service. If the costs of keeping them as a customer outweigh the value they provide in terms of revenue then the fact that they are loyal isn't necessarily a good thing. The fact is that just being "loyal" doesn't necessarily make one a good customer to the business, whether you believe you are or not. There's more to it from their side and they are generally pretty good at identifying the customers they care about and those they don't. The CRM data they have is rather impressive.
     
  13. KenInEscazu

    KenInEscazu Gold Member

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    It does take a bit of investigation to make sense of that, but upon completion of such investigation (and I'm no Mitt Fan), it's clear that he is paying an investor's tax rate. Just like Warren Buffett, Mitt has invested millions and millions of dollars. Congresses under both parties' control have repeatedly determined that we must keep rates low to keep investors interested in taking the risks necessary to keep fueling our economy and creating jobs. I don't qualify, but I sure hope they don't change that during this class war that I see you are a soldier for. We're in enough trouble already with people simply worried that they may be punished for being successful.

    The "NY" in your name, combined with your rich-bashing, kinda led me to the conclusion that you might be so misled. Since I'm from Texas, however, we like people who believe that liberty and right to pursue happiness is more important than making sure everything is "fair." Rush is an All-American Patriot, and his statement is 100% correct. Shocking? A little. Funny? Sure was to me. True? 100%.

    But hey... I think our little opinion clash is why they make chocolate AND vanilla. ;)
     
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  14. NYCUA1K

    NYCUA1K Gold Member

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    Having done my undergraduate studies in Texas at Southwestern University, Georgetown, TX (down IH 35 between Austin and Dallas), I suggest we talk about Armadillos, blue bonnets, the Lone Star beer to enhance the likelihood that we might agree on something...

    Our politics could not be more opposite than light and day.

    Cheers!
     
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  15. HaveMilesWillTravel
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    HaveMilesWillTravel Gold Member

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    Time machines are expensive.

    Time to wash the diet coke off my iPad :D
     
  16. daemon14

    daemon14 Gold Member

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    We were discussing bumping up the status of a passenger who flies the same amount but pays 3x as much. Giving them a bump on status to hope for repeat consumption is called "good business." As you say, "it's the American way!"

    Sent from my iPhone using milepoint
     
  17. NYCUA1K

    NYCUA1K Gold Member

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    The example is not perfect. We are talking about people who traveled nearly the same number of miles and were just short of achieving status. Paying 3x as much to come up short and paying smaller amounts to come up short but both contributing equivalently to the bottom line does not make the bigger fare spender more worthy...As someone said, how do you know you'll see the big spender again? On the other hand, the little spender, who wishes to make status, must stick with the same airline due to the lack of resources and may thus be counted to come back....
     
  18. KenInEscazu

    KenInEscazu Gold Member

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    Armadillos! Now living in Costa Rica, I have not seen one of those in a while. Plenty of other critters not found in Texas, but no Armadillos.

    I do have some bluebonnet seeds that I smuggled in here (actually received them as a going away gift and forgot they were in my pocket), but I can't figure out where to plant them for the best shot at blooming. It seems like EVERYthing grows here, but I need to study the optimum conditions to give them a chance at survival.

    Lone Star beer? Better talk to somebody else about that. I drank my entire lifetime allocation by the time I was 30.

    Thanks for lightening this up. I was actually feeling kinda guilty about letting my passion get the best of me.

    Pura Vida!
     
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  19. NYCUA1K

    NYCUA1K Gold Member

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    Costa Rica (Rich Coast)! I purchased a travel package that I intend to redeem to go to Costa Rica around my b-day, which is in November. I have heard nothing but super stuff about it from every one of my buddies who has been there so I decided to find out for myself. Maybe I will be in touch closer to the trip date for pointers...

    As for the bluebonnet seeds, beware that the local law enforcers do not get you for importing unauthorized flora, and you are right that just about anything would grow in that part of the world.
     
  20. MSPeconomist
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    MSPeconomist Gold Member

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    First of all, it's highly unlikely that the guy who buys lots of cheap tickets and the guy who buys one or a few expensive tickets both contribute equally to the airline's bottom line, profits.

    Also, if our only data is that the guy bought a bunch of cheap tickets, we don't necessarily know much about his type. UA could well be his secondary or tertiary FF program, where he decided to only use UA for certain cheap trips while devoting his major spending to anoth program. Maybe this would not be the profile of the majority of people with such observed spending programs, we cannot rule it out based on our hypothetical data.
     
  21. NYCUA1K

    NYCUA1K Gold Member

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    This is getting to be a wash because of the increasing number of assumptions that we are having to make about the players. Each of us could structure the situation such that it supports our POV. But I can say that a guy who cannot afford it but is buying a whole bunch of tickets with different airlines needs to be invited to MP so that he could learn how to achieve elite status more affordably (it is the very basis of "loyalty" programs!)... It is more likely that it is the guy with the big bucks who will fly on different airlines for convenience than the cheapo. Bottom line is that we have got to define the players by consensus before we can hope to compare them meaningfully...
     
  22. Counsellor
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    Counsellor Gold Member

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    Especially with those who are unwilling to think.
     
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  23. NYCUA1K

    NYCUA1K Gold Member

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    You mean the opposite, right? If not, then look in the mirror...
     
  24. Muerl
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    Muerl Gold Member

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    United offered me a similar deal last year about this time. I don't recall how outrageous it was, but it was in the ball park of these numbers, and that was only for 2P.
     
  25. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    How can someone provide 1/3 the total revenue of another customer and who flies the same amount be considered to contribute equivalently to the bottom line?? :confused:

    Just because someone repeatedly buys the product doesn't mean they are a customer you want to encourage or reward. Airlines go out of their way to encourage and reward high fare customers over lower fare customers. There's probably a good reason for that. Those are the customers who make or break it for the carriers. When such a small number of customers - the ones spending way more money on flights - represent such a large portion of the revenue then those are the ones you pursue, the ones you reward and the ones you expend resources on.

    Oh, and any chance the politics could go somewhere people care about that stuff rather than miles & points. :)
     

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