American Express Pulls Back On Card Approvals And New Online AAdvantage Award Redemption

News notes from around the interweb:

  • Royal Air Maroc awards are now bookable at very convenient, though their days as a go-to source for business class awards across the Atlantic when no one else has anything available may be numbered.

  • American Express pulls back on adding new credit card customers because of economic uncertainty, especially with many large companies pledging not to lay off employees in 2020 – which creates fear for what’s around the corner in 2021.

  • Greece suspends Qatar Airways flights after 12 passengers on flight Tuesday tested positive for COVID-19.

    According to local newspaper Kathimerini, nine of the passengers who teste positive are Pakistani citizens from Gujrat, one of whom has a Greek residence permit.

    Two other Greek citizens that tested positive for the virus are from Australia, while the last one is a Japanese citizen and member of a Greek-Japanese family, according to the General Secretariat for Civil Protection.

  • Airports expect crowding even with travel demand low given social distancing goals.

  • BCG’s Travel Recovery Dashboard making the rounds

  • Video trip report flying to China now. (HT: Reid F.)

  • Nice British Airways ‘welcome back’ video. (HT: TravelZork)

  • Think about your airline and hotel elite status while reading about status signaling in night clubs. Program executives, do this exercise too. For that purpose, pay attention to the first-third of the piece, about getting people to spend thousands of dollars to status signal, rather than the equally interesting sociological stuff about how young women become connected with party promoters.

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. Fascinating read on the last link.

    Hopefully American Express will listen to Warren Buffet about protecting the brand since they’ve seemingly given up on new business for now. A great start would be to fire the RAT team.

  2. Amex’s move is designed to allow it to avoid explaining to shareholders why nobody is willing to pay for the right to carry its overpriced cards anymore, or the valuelessness of the accoutrements it provides with them. “Our new card issuances haven’t fallen because our products are no longer worth the high prices we charge for them, but because we don’t want to issue them.” Sure.

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