In fairness to United… Many

In fairness to United… Many of United’s 747s have been going away, being replaced by 777s. That means the business class capacity drops tremendously (almost in half!) across much of the international route network. That means available upgrade inventory likely drops dramatically as well. So the upgrade inventory needs to be rationed somehow. Otherwise United would have had a whole bunch of flyers with upgrade certificates that could never be used, because there simply were too many coupons out there for the number of available seats. Making Systemwide Upgrades good only on pricier fares means rationing based on price. Of course, if a competitor doesn’t restrictions use of similar certificates or reduce available business upgrade inventory, United will lose A will lose… I still think they would have been better off solving the problem in…

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Dilution at the top for

Dilution at the top for United? I sent this email last night to a friend that’s a top-level elite (“1K”) with United: Looks like I was right about Systemwide Upgrades being useable on Lufthansa (though on a standby/day of departure basis only). Of course, you can still use miles to upgrade LH flights on the higher fares (as long as it’s on a LH flight number, not a UA codeshare). In other news/rumors, it looks like the promised extra goody for elites who requalified “the real way” (rather than through the extended qualification period) is only going to be a free companion ticket (not upgradeable). Also, it looks like the new Systemwides are only going to be valid on “H” fares and above. 🙁 That means no more upgrading the lowest fares internationally, folks. United…

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The 2003 Adult Video

The 2003 Adult Video News Awards were given out last night in Las Vegas. Apparently, it was a big night for Evil Angel productions, which took home 19 honors. I wonder, though, if it’s a sign of category-inflation when they give out “Best Gonzo Tape,” “Best Vignette Tape” (as distinguished from “Best Vignette Series” and “Best Foreign Vignette Series”), and “Best Sex Scene in a Foreign-Shot Production.” Not to mention “Best Ethnic-Themed Video.” I guess that’s just self-esteem meets porn.

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The Delta-Continental-Northwest marketing alliance

The Delta-Continental-Northwest marketing alliance will be approved — but with yet undisclosed conditions. No idea what this will all look like yet, as the devil is in the details. Government approval aside, I don’t expect too much aligning of the respective frequent flyer programs because the Continental-Northwest programs (which are nearly identical) are far different from the Delta program (which has just been massively revamped).

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Northwest Airlines has a new

Northwest Airlines has a new bonus miles promotion called Mile-a-Palooza. Various Northwest activities earn points which will be converted to miles (up to 200,000). You must register to participate. Unlike the last Mileage Mania promotion, this one will allow you to track your points online — a big improvement! It isn’t as generous/easy as the Fly Free Faster and Fly Free Faster 2 promotions last year, but then those only netted 10,000 miles each. And it seems a bit more lucrative than MIleage Mania. So if there’s any chance you’ll be having anything to do with Northwest in the coming months, it’s definitely worth registering.

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