Yesterday I wrote to you to inform you that Singapore Airlines is updating their reservation systems on July 6th and 7th. Singapore Airlines will join over 115 airlines that currently use the Amadeus Altéa suite system–in fact the majority of Star Alliance carriers already uses this system (17 as of October of 2011) and with SIA upgraded this month, it will more closely align SIA with the rest of the Star Alliance carriers. Although the upgrade is probably overall good, two negative changes to the KrisFlyer program were announced with little notice.
As of July 8, 2012 the following changes will take affect:
- Applicable fees for KrisFlyer redemption ticket changes can be paid for only with credit/debit cards; KrisFlyer miles will no longer be accepted.
- Redemption tickets can no longer be cancelled online. Members should contact KrisFlyer Membership Services or their nearest SIA office.
- Members who would like to make changes (other than seat and meal preferences) to their redemption bookings ticketed before 08 July 2012 are to contact KrisFlyer Membership Services or their nearest SIA office for assistance.
The change in the system will make redeeming flights more expensive for travelers, requiring that hard earned KrisFlyer miles are used for reserving actual seats and not used for paying additional fees. Furthermore, if you book a ticket with your KrisFlyer miles, once ticketed you’ll actually have to call SIA up to cancel your ticket instead of doing this online. Although the Amadeus Altea system might be considered an overall upgrade to SIA current reservation system, I find the first point to be a devaluation of the SIA frequent flyer program. If that’s not bad enough, the second change is a greater waste of time, and to the business man, time is money! For no one wants to sit on hold in order to cancel a trip, and this is going to tie up reservation specialists at call centers! I truly hope SIA recognize that these are bad changes and will backtrack on these changes in the future.