Looks like Hilton is making some changes to their loyalty program, too. Not as harsh as Delta, but still significant. New hotel classifications — from 5 to 6 — changing the number of points required for award stays effective June 1, 2003 Unlike Delta, which has more or less replaced their elite qualification system to one more reliant on revenue, Hilton has added revenue as a supplemental qualifying method. Next year, HHonors base points are an alternative to stays for qualifying for Gold and Diamond. Gold status: 60,000 Base points in a calendar year. Diamond: 100,000 Base points in a calendar year. Award Stays Now Count Toward VIP Status More points required for VIP-only awards effective June 1, 2003. Reward certificates requested prior to June 1 will be at current point prices and the certificate…
I posted details of my trip to Puerto Vallarta last weekend on Flyertalk.
The first good thing to come out of the United bankruptcy. United has announced that it will not charge $100 to standby for a same-day flight. This fee was scheduled to go into effect January 1. Currently, all other major airlines except America West had announced similar policies. We’ll see if those policies last, now that United has backed off.
United has a new brochure explaining their Chapter 11 proceeding and what they see as its benefits.
Tired of paying $400-$500 for the Delta Shuttle? Chinatown bus lines offers NY-DC roundtrip for $30, even less than Greyhound.
Okay, here are the changes to the Delta Skymiles program. Delta won’t discuss them until 3pm today, when they become official. These don’t affect general members — this is all about the Elite program. The good: New Million-miler recognition program — 2 million miles gets you lifetime Gold status and 4 million miles gets you lifetime Platinum Medallion status The cheapest fares (L, U, and T booking classes) — which were previously not upgradeable at all — are now upgradeable by elite members on the day of departure The ability to upgrade a companion with points Travel on SkyTeam partners counts towards elite status Gold members and Platinum members can give status to a friend when they reach certain mileage thresholds 50% bonus miles instead of 25% bonus miles for flying paid business class Elites…
Jeff Taylor, in a post on Reason Magazine’s new blog, finds a piece of delicious irony: So 60 Minutes does a story on Mississippi juries sticking big civil awards on big out-of-state companies in perverse rounds of “jackpot justice.” So what do the jurors mentioned on the broadcast do? Sue the TV show for $6 billion. That’s $597 million in actual damages and $5.9 billion in punitive damages for their defamation. Yep, that sure proves Morley and friends were wrong.
On a positive note, we’ll be tentatively allowed to park at the close-in airport parking lots again. The TSA banned parking within 300 feet of airports, which meant many lots were put out of service. This meant busing passengers from farther-away lots — increasing the time and hassle of travel. Now, as long as the threat-level stays “yellow,” we’ll be able to park.
There are significant questions about the usefulness and functionality of the wands being used at airport security by the Transportation Security Administration. TSA official John Rooney said the wands were giving airport screeners “a false sense of security.”
The right is calling for Trent Lott’s ouster as Senate Majority leader over comments at Strom Thurmond’s 100th birthday party that if the country had elected Thurmond President in 1948, “we wouldn’t have had all these problems over all these years(.)” First, many conservatives find Lott’s endorsement of Strom Thurmond’s 1948 segregationist views repugnant. Second, they also see Lott’s words coming back over and over in ad campaigns for years. As long as Lott is Senate Majority Leader, this quote means that the Republicans are at their root racists. And no matter what minorities think of Republican policies, as long as they think Republicans want to lynch them they’ll never vote for the GOP. Third, conservatives don’t like Lott much anyway, so they may see this as an opportunity to dump a wishy-washy leader and…