Category Archives: Readers’ questions

Excess baggage or excess weight?

Grote kofferAt check-in I was second in line and I estimated the weight of the big passenger in front of me at 130 kg (287 lbs), double my own weight. Also, I observed that his bag’s weight was 23 kg (51 lbs). When it was my turn to check in, my bag appeared to weigh 28 kg (62 lbs). As this was more than the allowance for the first checked bag, I had to pay extra. I wonder how reasonable it is that the big passenger adding 153 kg (417...
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The end of loyalty

A reader writes us about AAdvantage, AmericaAmerican US Airways Mergern Airlines’ loyalty program that the carrier is overhauling now the merger with US Airways has been completed. As a gold member he received information about the revamped program, but he finds it hard to digest and asks us to explain it. Airline Passenger Guru’s response: It seems a rash overhaul of American’s frequent flyer program. The changes are not always clear and make an untidy impression. For example, they will start partly on January 1, 2016, partly...
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Buy your status

LufthansaA reader sent us a letter he received from Miles & More, Lufthansa’s frequent flyer program. He is a senator (gold card holder) and has not yet earned sufficient miles to renew his senator status in 2016. You can access the letter here. It appears that earning 100,000 miles in 2015, which would earn our reader status renewal in 2016, is not really necessary. Lufthansa sends out targeted offers to Miles & More members to buy status renewal at a price of €2,000 ($2,150). Our reader asks us...
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Why didn’t I earn miles?

LufthansaA reader buys a business class ticket at United Airlines. The itinerary includes 3 international flights and 3 domestic flights (in the USA). As he is a senator (gold card holder) in Lufthansa’s Miles & More program he will earn miles. However, the domestic flights do not earn him any miles and he asks us why. It reminds us to a question another reader asked about a similar case in December 2014. His Miles & More account was credited with economy miles (250) instead of business miles (500)...
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Are fuel surcharges legitimate?

fuel1The oil price has plummeted, but I read that airlines are still charging fuel surcharges. I came across an article that called those charges fraudulent. Are fuel charges legitimate? Frank Westen Airline Passenger guru’s response: Airlines are free to set their prices. Whether or not a carrier levies a fuel surcharge is irrelevant for the total ticket price (including taxes, surcharges and fees). Relevant for the passenger is only the total ticket price, which can vary by the day and even during 1 day. To illustrate this we compare total ticket prices for...
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Why does a business class ticket earn me economy miles?

As a senator (gold card member) in Lufthansa’s Miles & More program I flew United Airlines on a business class ticket. My itinerary comprised some domestic one-class flights. Traveling economy is disappointing, but inevitable if a flight is operated with an all-economy aircraft. However, my Miles & More account was credited with economy miles (250) instead of business miles (500). Why do they credit only economy miles to a business traveler’s account, whereas they just credited 10,000 miles to my account because of the pilot strikes. Roger Berger Airline Passenger Guru’s response: We contacted Lufthansa and they say that the mileage...
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