Several loyalty program devaluations affecting Australians will take place after next weekend. Over the coming days, Amex Membership Rewards, Westpac Altitude Rewards and Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer are all changing their programs for the worse.
It’s now your last chance to prepare for the upcoming changes! So we thought we’d give a quick recap of what’s changing next weekend and how you can ensure your existing points don’t lose any value.
Amex Membership Rewards devaluation
As announced in November last year, Amex will be changing the point-earning rates on many of its credit cards from 15 April 2019. On the same date, Amex is also changing the rates at which existing Amex Membership Rewards points can be transferred to frequent flyer programs, hotel loyalty programs and redeemed for other rewards.
If you have an Amex Membership Rewards Ascent Premium, Ascent or Gateway account – and you haven’t been notified otherwise by Amex – your points will lose up to half of their value overnight if you don’t transfer or redeem them by next Sunday. You have until 11.59pm AEST on Sunday evening, although we don’t recommend leaving it to the last minute!
Read more: Amex Changes Imminent
Westpac Altitude discontinuing Velocity auto-redemption
There’s also bad news for anyone with Westpac Altitude points. Westpac will no longer accept Velocity auto-redemption enrolments from 15 April 2019. Velocity auto-redemption is the only way to transfer Altitude points to Velocity (or any program, for that matter) at a 2:1 rate. All other transfers (except to Air New Zealand Airpoints) take place at a 3:1 rate.
If you’re planning to transfer your Altitude points to Virgin Australia Velocity, make sure you enrol in Velocity auto-redemption by next Sunday evening! Note that some cardholders might not be able to enrol online, requiring a call to Altitude Rewards. The Altitude Rewards call centre is open from 8am to 8pm, Monday to Friday – meaning you have until 8pm tomorrow to enrol over the phone!
Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer partner award & upgrade price increases
Singapore Airlines is increasing Star Alliance and partner airline Business and First Class award prices (except Alaska Airlines awards) on 16 April 2019. This means you have until on Monday evening, Singapore time (1.59am AEST on Tuesday) to book partner airline awards with KrisFlyer miles at the current prices. The current Star Alliance award chart is extremely competitive, and in many cases Star Alliance awards are presently even cheaper than Singapore Airlines awards on the same route.
Star Alliance award flights from Australia to Europe in Business are currently 210,000 KrisFlyer miles, round-trip. From next Tuesday this price will increase to 235,000 miles. By comparison, a round-trip Business award to Europe on Singapore Airlines/SilkAir currently costs 232,000 KrisFlyer miles (or 212,000 miles from Darwin/Perth).