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I just got an email from Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer that included a brief reference to a new devaluation to the Star Alliance partner award chart that will be implemented on 7th December 2017:
As part of our ongoing efforts to give our members greater convenience, we are pleased to inform you that KrisFlyer members will be able to redeem miles for flights on Star Alliance and other partner airlines on singaporeair.com or via our mobile app from 7 December 2017.
At the same time, updates have also been made to redemption award levels for Star Alliance carriers and will take effect on the same day. Click here to view the new Star Alliance Award Chart.
With effect from 7 December 2017, an offline service fee of USD25 or 2,500 KrisFlyer miles will be introduced for the following services rendered by any Singapore Airlines office and reservations hotline:
- Redemption ticket bookings
- Redemption ticket changes
- Redemption upgrades
- KrisFlyer membership services, including updating of passport details, adding or changing Redemption Group Nominees
This service fee will be waived for transactions that cannot be performed online.
You can compare the new award chart with the old one below:
As you can see, many Business and First Class rates are increasing by about 20%, so to sandwich the news in an email with just one line about “updates” seems a bit sneaky to me.
The good news from a UK perspective is that the excellent Business Class rates between Europe and the Middle East region remains at just 50,000 Miles Return (25,000 one way). The major bad news is that First Class between the same regions is nearly doubling from 70,000 Return to a massive 120,000 Miles! If you were eying up a trip in Lufthansa First, make sure you book it before 7th December.
On the plus side, at least it will soon be possible to book partner airlines online – I got stuck on hold to KrisFlyer for about an hour recently when trying to book a very simple partner redemption over the phone.
In general the changes aren’t too bad, but the Europe – Middle East First Class increase is a shocker. I do wish airlines communicated changes like this a bit more clearly.