Airpoints Dollars Upgrades to be Replaced by OneUp™ Offer-Based Upgrade System
Effective on May 30, 2012, customers of Air New Zealand who are booked via a global distribution system, or GDS, for travel on flights which are equipped with premium cabins will be eligible to make bids for upgrades using the new OneUp programme, which will replace Airpoints stand-by and confirmed upgrades.
According to Air New Zealand, OneUp is “an offer-based upgrade system that allows customers to choose how much they are prepared to pay for an upgrade and make an offer on that basis.” OneUp offers can only be used for a ‘single class’ upgrade, such as from Economy to Premium Economy or from Premium Economy to Business — you cannot upgrade more than one level of class of service, such as from economy class to business class. To be eligible for OneUp, the “upgrade offer needs to be submitted to Air New Zealand at least seven days prior to flight departure. Customers can choose whether to pay with Airpoints Dollars, debit card, credit card or Travelcard.”
Recognition upgrades are not affected by this change and can be requested as is the current policy.
FlyerTalk members are not happy — to say the least — with what appears to be the monetization of Airpoints benefits which were once included with elite level status by posting comments such as “NZ has made itself completely irrelevant to business travelers and is clearly in a race to the bottom for the leisure market” and “There’s nothing useful left in the Airpoints program.”
Many FlyerTalk members who are members of the Air New Zealand Airpoints frequent flier loyalty programme posted that they plan to leave the programme and search for an alternative. How does this portend for the future of the Air New Zealand Airpoints frequent flier loyalty programme?