Why are Singapore Airlines Award Redemption Taxes/Charges so HIGH?

Discussion in 'Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer' started by one9, Mar 31, 2009.

  1. one9

    one9 Active Member

    Sep 14, 2005
    I transferred points to SQ to book an award flight today. Luckily at the last minute before booking I double checked Qantas again and an award flight has been released today on the day I want to travel :)

    Flight was one way flight: SYD > BKK

    With SQ it stops for 2 hours or so in Singapore so obviously should have a bit higher taxes. But the difference between charges and taxes is huge:

    Qantas: AUD $126
    Singapore Airlines: AUD $253

    Are all Singapore airlines award booking taxes/charges this high? I don't usually book award flights with them.
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  2. kamchatsky

    kamchatsky Established Member

    Mar 8, 2006
    Somewhere in Sydney
    It is my only gripe with SQ. Whilst their award is pretty cheap, their taxes on SQ awards are hideously high. taxes for SYD-SIN-HKG SQ award return could be like $550AU!!!

    However, if you book award that is not singapore airlines (eg *A awards) you may end up not paying any fuel surcharge at all, just like my return SYD-AKL-PPT with NZ on J. $145AU for the taxes.

    So maybe the best strategy is to redeem non SQ awards through Krisflyer.
  3. one9

    one9 Active Member

    Sep 14, 2005
    Not being very familiar with booking SQ awards - can you please tell me how good is their award booking engine on their website? Can you view and book awards from most *A carriers? Or do you need to phone them?
  4. diesmile

    diesmile Member

    Apr 27, 2008
    sorry if this is a noob question, but how do you do this exactly?
  5. Keith009

    Keith009 Established Member

    Mar 6, 2005
    Brisbane / Sydney
    That's only because most awards on NZ do not attract fuel fines, regardless of what program you book them through. I had a MEL-xAKL-PVG return booked with LH miles that was only $70 in +++s.
  6. pblackm

    pblackm Member

    Dec 26, 2007
    I'm in Chennai at the moment and had been booked to fly MAA/SIN/SYD tonight, but due to a change in plans, am flying from SIN to BKK for a couple of meetings, then back to SIN and onwards to SYD (on an A380 at last). Trip report coming.

    I decided to do this side trip using Krisflyer points. Taxes are Govt SGD59 and "Carrier surcharges" SGD84.

    All booked online with a critical waitlist to enable the connection out of SIN. I was on the waitlist for about 5 hours and then the magic email came though. Was quite happy about that, given that finding a reasonably priced paid flight BKK/SIN on a Friday afternoon was impossible.
  7. auriga

    auriga Active Member

    Nov 6, 2005
    The website only shows SQ flights.
    For other *A carriers, will need to phone, so no online discount!
  8. auriga

    auriga Active Member

    Nov 6, 2005
    It does not work for all situations, but if the route you want to fly is served by other star alliance airlines, then booking an award flight on those airlines MAY result in lower fees/ fuel surcharges.

    Have to call up.
  9. kdser

    kdser Intern

    Sep 16, 2008
    Based on my experience, SQ surcharge is higher than QF.
  10. dajop

    dajop Senior Member

    Jul 1, 2002
    Flight Map:
    View my flight map
    More discussion on this over at FT. General opinion seems to be fuel surcharge still high to cover poor hedging position.

    It's a points/surcharges trade off. A recent redemption I made - MEL-SIN 1 way - choices were QF in Y+ (45K pts) and SQ in J (33K pts) , but SQ tax was about $120 more. If I'd transferred those points from 1:1 credit card the choice would be clear, $120 for J over Y+? Yes for sure. However, as the points on both programs were from flying, and due to my status that worked out to be QF flying 22,500 miles, and SQ 26,400 miles .. the extra miles & dollars still seemed reasonable for business class.
  11. Jezwanda

    Jezwanda Newbie

    Apr 19, 2009
    If you book a SQ flight using cash and then check the exact same flight using points then the points flight has a massively larger tax and surcharge. I personally think that this is a deceitful trading practice by SQ. Once I realised this I decided to switch loyalty to other airlines. Does anyone else find this deceitful?. It may not be just SQ who does this but this is the only airline where I have noticed such a huge increase in taxes and surcharges when you book the same flight using points.
  12. lovetravellingoz

    lovetravellingoz Senior Member

    Jul 13, 2006

    And yes I think that there doing it to deliberately to milk extra $ from their points program.

    However on the upside they have 25-50% discount on some flights (unfortunately I can't take advantage of this.....or at least with their HUGE fuel fines I will not be.....) and 15% off on all on-line redemptions.

    However the fuel fines make redeeming for economy poor value given what one can buy flights for.

    However with the discounts Business and First Redemptions can still be good value for some destinations in J or F if you can get a Saver Award.

    Getting the Saver Award is really the key on SQ...but unfortunately this is not available to all destinations...and even on the destinations that have it the new aircraft mean that not all flights are available.

    At Xmas I have redeemed for 4 J seats to Vietnam ...

    Fuel fines and taxes were a VERY hefty $1900 for 4.

    But points used were only 306K for MEL-SIN -Ho Chi Min..and then returning from Hanoi.

    Paying for this would have been $21K inc fuel fines and taxes.

    So 306K for $19k..or over 6 cent per point.

    Points from Amex transfer to SQ at 1.1.

    To get to Vitenam in J on other airlines I can transfer points to, if I could have got 4 J seats, would have cost a lot more in terms of MR points (considering both transfer rates and redemption rates) and so paying the hefty fuel fine was still better.

    So for at least this trip despite the fuel fines SQ was my best option.

    however if it was not for the fuel fines I would probaly be booking some short-stay redemptions which currently the combined fuel fines and taxes deter me from doing.
  13. Aussie_flyer

    Aussie_flyer Established Member

    Apr 26, 2009
    You can only book online for Singapore Airlines flights, but the booking engine is very good and right now offers 25% off all redemptions for all classes
  14. auriga

    auriga Active Member

    Nov 6, 2005
    I would not say the booking engine is very good.

    It does not always show the combination of flights that you are after, eg, if you want to do an overnight (<24h) transit.
  15. albatross710

    albatross710 Established Member

    May 15, 2004
    I think that we are going to get a lot more knowledge of the SQ booking engine after the Westpac/Krisflyer tie up. I also think other banks will introduce a Krisflyer program to be competitive.

    More pressure will have to be brought onto SQ to lower their fuel surcharges.
  16. Evan

    Evan Established Member

    Dec 26, 2006
    SIN / MEL
    Lets hope so but still the saver and current upto 50% off all awards promotions make then a super cheap redemption option in J and a couple of $$ in taxes is nothing...

    $220 or something like that + 22k points for JNB-SIN in J :)
  17. one9

    one9 Active Member

    Sep 14, 2005

    Due to the difference in points (38500 vs 23xxx), I am thinking of redeeming a Thai airlines award flight through Singapore Airlines instead of Thai.

    Is there a way to check availability of thai award flights online on any website? The thai airways website won't let you search award flights if your balance is insufficient.
  18. deluxeflyer

    deluxeflyer Member

    Sep 21, 2008
    The ANA website comes to mind, free but you need to set up an account with ANA's FFP - v easy. KVS is the other, but that's a paid service.
  19. dajop

    dajop Senior Member

    Jul 1, 2002
    Flight Map:
    View my flight map
    You can join ANA mileage club. That brings up reliable availability on many (but not all ) star alliance carriers, including Thai.
  20. one9

    one9 Active Member

    Sep 14, 2005
    Thanks. I joined ANA. The online partner redemption search is excellent.

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