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Bits: earn Avios and BA tier points on a KLM route!, Icelandair in surprise rescue acquisition of WOW Air

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News in brief:

NEW: earn Avios and tier points on a KLM route!

One of the quirks of British Airways Executive Club is that you can earn Avios and BA tier points when flying on Emirates.  Very few people know this.  All you need to do is book on a Qantas codeshare and ensure that your boarding pass has a QF flight number and not an EK flight number.

Not every Emirates route is a Qantas codeshare, but most destinations eastwards are included.  In this article (click) I show how my wife earned BA tier points flying Emirates to Singapore using Qantas flight codes.

There is now a new way of exploiting this trick.

From 31st October, Qantas has been codesharing with KLM on its flights from Amsterdam to Singapore.  In return, KLM has added its flight codes to Qantas services from Singapore to Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and Perth.

If you book Amsterdam to Singapore on KLM, but using the Qantas flight code, you can credit it to British Airways Executive Club and earn tier points and Avios.

Qantas is the ONLY oneworld airline which works this way.  You do NOT receive Avios or tier points if you book a codeshare flight with any other oneworld airline if the actual flight is operated by a non-oneworld carrier.

The carve-out for Qantas is outlined on this page of ba.com.  In small print under Qantas it says:

Executive Club Members can collect Avios on:

  • Flights marketed and operated by Qantas or Qantas Airlines affiliates under the QF designated code.
  • Flights marketed by Qantas but operated by Jetstar booked as oneworld fare in L class only.
  • Flights marketed by Qantas or Qantas Airlines affiliates and operated by Qantas, a Qantas affiliate, BA, another oneworld carrier, or another third party under a codeshare agreement.

There is no similar wording for any other partner.

You can find out more about the codeshare on klm.com here.

KLM Qantas codeshare Amsterdam Singapore

Icelandair buys WOW Air

In a surprising move yesterday, Icelandair announced the $18m acquisition of its low-cost Icelandic competitor WOW Air.

WOW Air was high up the list of carriers expected to go bust this Winter, especially as it recently cut a number of US routes at short notice.  The airline had built its business model on flying single-aisle, traditionally short-haul, aircraft across the Atlantic.

Icelandair, which has been taking inroads into the US market itself in recent years, will keep the WOW Air brand.  The combined business will control just under 4% of the transatlantic air market.

As Icelandair is not part of any airline alliance, there is no loyalty angle to this story.  However, anyone who has booked a WOW Air flight and had started to get nervous about it actually taking off can now breath more easily.

There is clearly a story here, however.  Icelandair Group is the biggest company in Iceland.  It is quoted with a broad shareholding so this doesn’t look like a Government-led bailout of WOW Air, but at the same time you can’t help thinking that Icelandair could have waited for the airline to go bankrupt and picked up the assets.

Even more oddly, Icelandair is currently without a permanent CEO after the incumbent resigned in August after a profit warning.  Companies without a CEO rarely make acquisitions.

It isn’t clear how much debt WOW Air has, but $18m for the equity is peanuts – that is even less than Flybe is currently worth.  WOW currently operates 14 Airbus A320 and three widebody A330 planes, but these must all be leased given that the fleet would be worth around $2bn.

Icelandair buys WOW AIr

Play Marriott’s ‘daily win’ game

Finally, don’t forget to click here to play the Marriott Rewards ’29 Ways To Stay’ daily win game today.  You should win at least 50, but hopefully more, Marriott Rewards points.

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Comments

  1. OT: Does anyone know if with the Credit Card IHG Free Night, if I cancel online does the voucher go back into my online account ready for me to book elsewhere?

  2. Benylin says:

    OT: IHG REWARDS CLUB: £10k to trigger free night, is that in the same calendar year as receiving card, or 1Y from receiving the card? Thanks

    PS Curve is being a pain with the IHG card

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