Yesterday commenter TJ flagged that ANA is introducing a new zone-based award chart effective April 12. The only problem is that I haven’t found an English-version of the announcement, and have been on travel and time-constrained.
We care because ANA:
- Is a Star Alliance member, so their miles can be used on a variety of partner flights
- Their website is in general the best for booking Star Alliance awards, showing award space on on all Star partners.
- They are an American Express Membership Rewards transfer partner, so lots of US folks have access to their miles.
- The current distance-based award chart has some fantastic values.
Bottom-line is that at the margin there will be some great values that disappear, corner cases, where you could max out the old mileage bands — like 63,000 miles for roundtrip business class between New York and London.
But overall this isn’t a devaluation, and many awards become less expensive. Where pricing goes up, they don’t go up substantially. This is a shift to zone-based, or region-based, meaning you start with the area of the world you are flying from and where you are going rather than calculating the total distance flown. And overall it’s just a shift from distance-based to zone-based, not a big devaluation although there will be winners and losers.
- Business class roundtrip to North Asia 105,000 miles
- Business class roundtrip to South Asia and India 110,000 miles
- Business class roundtrip to Europe 72,000 miles
The big loss is only getting one stopover on awards. Not a big deal for most members, but for those who maximize awards it’s fewer destinations than before.
- The Best American Express Points Transfer Partners By Destination
- Star Alliance Partners: Who They Are and How to Book Awards on Them