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Discussion in 'General Discussion | Miles/Points' started by milchap, Apr 16, 2011.
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I am on the side of restriction...... loose lips sink ships.....and "big mouths" kill good finds!
I agree that some restriction makes sense. But if it turns into the *awful* "Trick It" thread, then that's a terrible result. Hopefully a balance can be struck.
(w.r.t. the Aeroplan redemption changes which have triggered this conversation, sadly they were long overdue and the easily availability of examples was not the only thing which led to points devaluation. Didn't help, but I wonder, honestly, how much they contributed vs just regular devaluation pressures that all programs suffer from.)
I'm a bit concerned that MP could evolve with most information on good deals being distributed through private conversations rather than posts.
There are a number of different scenarios.
First there is the type of fare mistake that is going to be pulled quickly. Maybe in 1 hour, maybe in 1 or 2 days. While calling the airline can ruin the deal for all the others who could have gotten in on the deal, it's going to die pretty soon.
Second is the type of deal that will probably stay around for months, if not years. There have been many deals out of CMB and some other "off the beaten track" locations that had very low rates. No problem if a reasonable amount of tickets are booked over time. If all of a sudden, all the seats for the next 11 months are booked, they're going to notice, and the deal will be screwed.
Third is a fare dump type fare. If done in moderation, the airlines may never notice it. If thousands of tickets are done in this method, then they'll be noticed.
I've seen the differences in Jumbos that are handled underground, with people who know how to ticket without raising any attention. And in my own case, a jumbo that I discovered and posted on FT was probably blown out of the water by an idiot who called the airline about it.
Many people see a deal on the internet and book a year at a hotel, book 50 airplane tickets, or call up the airline to ask for a seat while the deal is still alive. People need to learn how to fly under the radar, and maximize a deal without raising red flags.
This seems to be an argument for having a private, restricted-access area here on MP for some deals.
I've always abided by the restrictions under which things are shared with me, e.g. here's a great deal but please don't post and I won't.
Sitll, I believe in sharing. Under most circumstances.
1) Most deals, there's strength in numbers, while Marriott has a tendency in my experience to honor mistakes that affect only a few folks and cancel the really costly ones I've mostly seen the really widespread deals honored and the obscure ones chains walk away from, the big ones are guaranteed to generate big publicity (on the upside when honored, and on the downside if not).
2) But more often than not the publicity doesn't kill it. Here's I"m talking about short-lived mistake fares, those are usually caught quickly anyway. I like to grab my own first, and those of my friends, but once it's been out there a few hours I'm happy to see everyone else get in on it. And I'm not worried about it going away, it will anyway, and anyone who hasn't jumped in on a few hours I'm less worried about, happy to see the rest of the community get the chance.
That said, there are always some things I won't write publicly. There are airfare pricing glitches that will get killed the moment they're public. And so I share those privately, I'm always happy to do so, but I don't want to see the loopholes closed that folks would otherwise have an opportunity to use over a long period of time.
Still, I don't believe that anyone has more of a right to information than anyone else, and will never criticize anyone for posting good information as long as they are not violating a confidence in doing so.
And I tend to think much of the handwringing is overblown. Aeroplan isn't increasing its award chart because folks on internet frequent flyer forums posted about the great value in the award chart. Award charts go up, that's what they do, and this one hasn't been changed meaningfully in awhile.
In the meantime, many frequent flyers have had great opportunities to fly amazing international first class products with great routings that they never would have, and I'm glad that tips like Aeroplan 'mini-RTW' itineraries have been shared and shared broadly.
The airlines have learned to monitor some websites for flaws in their fares....and so have the travel sites.
It is a game of cat and mouse.....
We Air Canada pax learned the hard way that the Mexican Hat Dance was doomed as it got known.....a major newspaper got wind of it.
There is a good reason that private conversations and private websites exist.
UA definitely did take notice of the previously generous routing rules for fares and now restrict extra "padding" via multiple connections. I'd have to expect it was from discovered via these boards and/or the volumes of people making unusual connections.
MP already has a private forum... the forum which Silver members can access. This is not exposed via search engines, I believe, and is the perfect place for these sorts of deals.
While the requirements to become a silver member are not onerous, it does help protect the deal from the search engines and non-contributors to MP.
I propose the Mileage mistakes be posted in the Private forum!
When the official lurkers have responded to enough queries, they will become silver...... and they will know.
seeing as most oops fares are shut down pretty quick, why not just book how ever many trips you want, then post. You get yours and hopefully some others can benefit as well.
I'm all for sharing, but make sure you book your ticket first
Sharing is how others will learn the tricks and how to do things in general, regardless of whether they partake or not.
Exactly. Much of the good AC stuff has been killed by a Air Canada employee who has access to his previous career as a mileage runner. Now he's on the other side working for 'the man'
I think whatever you do airlines will work it out. I guess it's just a race to see how many people can benefit before it's known to the airline. Private forum does sound like a good idea but what's to stop an airline employee from just joining as a normal Joe Bloggs and being able to view it? I guess this requires a lot of effort on the airline's behalf but still possible.
im all in for a private forum
Miaaooww! Exactly what I was thinking! It will inspire others to learn to use the tools available and look for themselves, thus more deals found and shared. win-win.
I presume that these private forums are by invitation only and that the candidates for membership are vetted....
The private forums are useful for airline pricing glitches.
The mistake fares are out there for all to grab.
Sharing mistake fares is great.....but revealing in an open forum, the tricks of the frequent flyer world leads to those deals being killed.
Knew there was a reason I liked you dude! Rock-on!
My concern is it becomes too much of an old boys club with posts like "I know things you do not know" ... personally I may never partake in any of these things but I think it helps the overall community to share (at least in some form so as not to kill the item) information so others can learn. I am so against this is not my table syndrome.
Enough info should be given so that the overall community can benefit by finding new deals/fares. I like the effort that's being done in the Trick it thread on MP but don't think enough is given out yet - I have no clue what a 3X but at least I know how a FD is supposed to work. Have been trying to see if FD might work ex-Asia..
count me in .