Singapore Airlines Blocking Partner Awards

Filed Under: Awards, Singapore

At this point if you want to redeem miles for travel on Singapore Airlines, you’ll have to do so directly through the KrisFlyer program.

Singapore Airlines pulls all partner awards

Singapore Airlines has temporarily pulled all award availability through partner frequent flyer programs. This means that at the moment the only way to redeem miles for travel on Singapore Airlines is directly through the KrisFlyer program.

Note that this doesn’t apply to redeeming KrisFlyer miles on partner airlines, but rather just applies to redeeming partner miles on Singapore Airlines (in other words, you can still redeem KrisFlyer miles on Star Alliance partners).

Alaska Airlines, which is a Singapore Airlines partner, has a message on its website providing the following explanation:

Singapore Airlines award availability: Singapore Airlines has removed access to award travel due to the complexities of enforcing global travel restrictions during the Covid-19 pandemic. We anticipate that access will be restored beginning September 1, 2020.

While this indicates that availability may be restored beginning September 1, I wouldn’t necessarily count on that timeline to stick.

The explanation is interesting as well — this award availability is being pulled “due to the complexities of enforcing global travel restrictions.” Without further details, there are a few ways to interpret this:

  • Singapore is now allowing transit passengers, but the logistics are complicated, and those booking through third party programs may not fully understand what’s going on
  • In general entry restrictions are constantly changing, so does Singapore Airlines want people booking directly to be sure everyone understands the restrictions in place?
  • Singapore Airlines’ schedule is constantly changing, so is this just to avoid the complicated logistics of having to work with a liaison to change tickets?

Singapore Airlines awards can’t be booked through partner programs

Why this isn’t that big of a deal

There are a variety of reasons this isn’t a huge deal, not the least of which is that fewer people are traveling right now. In the case of Singapore Airlines specifically, keep in mind that the airline blocks most premium cabin award space through partner programs, choosing to keep it bookable primarily through the KrisFlyer program.

KrisFlyer is transfer partners with all major transferable points currencies, so there are lots of ways to come by these miles even if you’re not a Singapore Airlines frequent flyer.

Most Singapore Airlines premium awards are only bookable through KrisFlyer

Bottom line

For the time being Singapore Airlines award space isn’t available through partner programs. While this is allegedly related to the complexities of travel associated with coronavirus, it’s not entirely clear what’s going on beyond that.

Personally I don’t view this as a huge deal for the time being, given that most Singapore Airlines premium awards are only bookable directly through the KrisFlyer program anyway.

Are you impacted by this temporary award outage?

  1. Time for Star Alliance and other partner airlines to retaliate by blocking Krisflyer access to their awards.

  2. This is actually a sensible move. SQ/Singapore’s rules for transit pax are very complicated and I am sure SQ does not want to be responsible for partner award tix when passengers find out they are ineligible to fly.

  3. Singapore used to block premium seats from partners but not anymore. I used partner miles (AS/AC) to redeem two suites class seats on SQ, which wasn’t possible (either waitlisting, standard award or no availability) with KF miles. You have to choose your routes really carefully, however.

  4. I can’t even find award space (any class) through KF for SQ (USA to SE Asia). If I search revenue flights I see options however.

  5. Flew MNL-SIN-DPS in J on SQ in February using AS points. Because of the stopover scam we were not able to have a stop in Singapore which was unfortunate because of our history of living there back in the day.

    However – was so unimpressed with their A350/787 seating that I would be very careful about choosing them in the future. So – no loss in reality.

  6. @Stvr: Ditto when you say: Are you going to footnote your latest Alaska airlines mileage sales pitch?

    You mean “the little airline that thinks it invented First Class?”

  7. AS has a far better mileage program than AC period. The “new Aeroplan” is playing catch up with the current AS Mileage program.
    @Lucky what about existing SQ Aeroplan reservations for 2021 or is it too early to panic?

  8. I hope Krisflyer would extend the expiration of miles again. My miles from 2018 were due to expire earlier this year and I paid fee to extend them for 6 months just before they offer free extension due to COVID19. Around the same time, I transferred a few thousand Chase UR Points to krisflyer with intention to use for Alaska’s short haul flights. I wanted to use Krisflyer to book west coast RT on Alaska for this summer but it’s been no availability… if I knew SQ would block availabilities on their partners, I never would have transferred my UR points. I contacted Krisflyer rep but didn’t get definite answer whether another extension would be offered for my miles since my original extension was with paying fees.

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