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Southwest changing to variable redemption rate for RR points

Discussion in 'Getting There & Getting Around' started by Chuck2009x, Feb 14, 2015.

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  1. Chuck2009x

    Chuck2009x VIP Whale

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    Last edited: Feb 14, 2015
  2. FXT

    FXT VIP Whale

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    i thought they already did it that way?
     
  3. Chuck2009x

    Chuck2009x VIP Whale

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    Nope currently it's 70 points per $1 of base fare.

    The last change they made was a couple of years ago when they raised the redemption rate from 60 to 70.
     
  4. FXT

    FXT VIP Whale

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    I guess they'll rape us even more on the Sunday flights now.
     
  5. cjlangston

    cjlangston Tourist

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    given that the base fare on flights differs by destination, time of day, load factor, etc it has the same effect on points required. Thus, the appearance of being the same thing
     
  6. NativeSoCal

    NativeSoCal Low-Roller

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    I use my RR points frequently for flights to Vegas, and it currently does vary by day, times, fare class, etc......

    On the surface, this doesn't appear to change much. :confused2:
     
  7. VegasGroove

    VegasGroove VIP Whale

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    Agree. And for me, SW is still the best thing smokin' going to Vegas.
     
  8. marksind

    marksind Low-Roller

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    We fly a lot on Southwest points. As an earlier poster mentioned, their last "devaluation" was going from 1.8 cents per point to 1.6 cents per point early last year. This announcement is incredibly ambiguous, but no doubt it will be a change, and it won't be in the user's favor. I suspect it will be rather ugly because of the intentional vagueness of the announcement. The last time was very straightforward. They just said what the change in point value was going to be.

    I can understand changes when the airlines were losing money, but last year was the most profitable in airline history, and this one is projected to exceed it since they are not passing on the benefit of lower fuel prices. Corporate greed gets tedious.
     
  9. publife

    publife Newbie

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    I imagine this is exactly how SW is hoping people will see this change - but as a frequent SW award redeemer, I'm quite concerned about how bad this change could turn out to be.

    Right now, the number of points required to 'buy' an award ticket is directly related to the base cost of the flight - for a Wanna Get Away ticket, the ratio is 70points to $1. That means that the number of points required is higher on more expensive flights. In the future, Southwest will also be increasing the RATIO of points:dollars on flights, based on the same kinds of criteria they use to set their prices - more desirable flights will not only have a higher price, but they'll also require more points per dollar. It basically doubles up the premium charged for 'good flights' so SW can steer award tickets towards whatever flights they want.

    I'm not surprised they're doing this, but the fact that they're being vague and close lipped about the details causes me to worry that the upper limit of these premiums is going to be very high. Most of my flights are long distance nonstop flights booked only a few weeks in advance, and it sounds like those are exactly the factors they'll be charging additional premiums for. I don't have a clue how much those flights will 'cost' in the future, and that lack of transparency bothers me a lot. The fact that they announced these changes in a way that makes a lot of people think, "oh, no big deal, that's how it's always worked" is even more worrisome. Time will tell, but the scariest part is that from here on out, they don't even have to tell us when they decide to devalue our points - we'll just figure it out as the number of points required increases more and more.
     
  10. Chuck2009x

    Chuck2009x VIP Whale

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    It will be essentially be a surcharge for using points for some flights.

    Difference in prices due to all of those factors are already reflected in the cash prices and therefore in the number of points you have to use but it is a constant ratio of 70 to $1.

    For example, today,
    Flight A costs $10 cash or 700 points.
    The more desirable (for whatever reason) Flight B costs $20 cash or 1,400 points.

    The new way, Flight B will still cost $20 cash, but could cost 1,500 (or any number, but not less than 1,400) points.
     
  11. Iamrice

    Iamrice High-Roller

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    That's how I read it.
    Popular flights are gonna be a bunch of points.
     
  12. DaiLun

    DaiLun R.C., L.C., and A.A.N.G.

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    From where I'm at, they're still the least expensive (i.e. cheapest) way to fly to Las Vegas, so, no change until I get my Elio.

    www.elio.com
     
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  13. ernestoc33

    ernestoc33 Low-Roller

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    Well that sucks!
     
  14. nostresshere

    nostresshere Mr. Anti Debit Card

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    Rather long discussion on this over at flyertalk.com in the Southwest forum.
     
  15. bubbakitty

    bubbakitty native Texan; born and bred.

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    I think this will cause you to put a "value" on your points balance. If you pursue all avenues of acquiring points many have multipliers attached to purchases, bonuses for certain hotels / car rental outlets and of course paying to fly SWA. You may want to pay cash for the flight if it is outrageously priced as points.

    We still compare a roundtrip to the old 19,200 points to fly anywhere anytime (back when there were few black-out dates) when you earned a point for each dollar spent on VISA. We would usually earn 1.5 trips a year as we put everything we can on VISA and pay off each month (view it as a checking account). Although we do not pursue the point multipliers as others may, it IS easier to accumulate points than previously. Their value (to me) cannot be as high as they were when you only earned 1:1.

    I may be too lazy to compare but as long as I can take golf clubs, medium size suit case, carry-on of personal items without charge, I haven't looked beyond SWA for travel. It may not be as good a deal as previously offered but it is still our best option.
     
    1st Super Bowl DT...Panthers / Browns no doubt
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  16. smartone

    smartone VIP Whale

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    Maybe this will help even things out a bit for SWA with regards to all the cheapo "users" who sign-up up for the credit-card to get the 50-60K points and then cancel the card only to do it all again the next year when they have a trip. As one poster stated a couple years ago on that, "hey, if they're going to allow it, I'm going to do it!"

    I've got over 600K points in my account, so I'm sittin' pretty.
     
  17. burdog

    burdog Low-Roller

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    Well at least it didn't read like CET's announcement of resort fees, "Our customers requested it."
     
  18. Chuck2009x

    Chuck2009x VIP Whale

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    I hear what you're saying, but if anything, this should reinforce that in general, you should never build up a large bank of any kind of points, because they are just a big juicy target for the accountants. It was actually only a year ago Southwest devalued points by 17%, now this.
     
  19. smartone

    smartone VIP Whale

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    I agree with you... I just get 'em faster than I can ever use 'em.
     
  20. marksind

    marksind Low-Roller

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    Smartone,

    Have you been hurt by Southwest reducing its service in and out of Reno? We like Reno, but now that Southwest has eliminated service between Seattle and Reno, Alaska has jacked up their fares (they've got the only non-stops, actually Horizon turboprops) and it's cheaper and quicker to go to Vegas all the time.
     
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