Will the volcanic ash situation lead to double EQMs for the rest of the legacies?

Before this whole debacle I was leaning towards the other legacies not matching US Airways’ double elite qualifying miles promotion. But after this huge disaster, I’m thinking we’ll see either American or United “bite,” and then the others will quickly follow.

And you know something? If American announces it, I’m going for Executive Platinum. End of story. I know I’ve said it before, but this time I mean it. And I expect you guys to hold me to it!

C’mon, bring it on…

Filed Under: American, Continental
  1. Really? Not saying you’re wrong but help me with the logic.

    There’s a huge backlog of passengers, which means flights that go go out full.

    Are you thinking traffic drops off because people are afraid to fly?

    Because otherwise I’d think the flights would be even more full than otherwise, rather than less, so what would the double eqm accomplish?

    And if there’s fear it would be transatlantic travel, should the offer be targeted / route-specific? And wouldn’t people just book away and pick domestic destinations?

  2. we’ll hold you to it if there is double eqm promotion! 🙂

    i agree with gary on this one. at one point, it seemed likely that there will be a double eqm. but i think the chances of one now (with the volcano disruption) would cause it to be “less” likely as well, due to the backlog of passengers and higher load.

  3. I can see it from a revenue standpoint. If airlines figure they have lost xxx amount of millions of dollars due to the volcano, that might be an incentive to offer double EQMs. You have to figure a decent amount of people are probably taking advantage of a full refund.

  4. Gary, I think you’re viewing this through the wrong lens.

    It’s not about the time when they are trying to work back to a normal schedule. It will take a week to unwind and be a mess.

    But in early May when the finance guys look at the revenue for April. They’ll see a really bad month. After a bad February (storms) that’s when something might break free.

    If they decide that they need to make their Q2 numbers they have a few choices: find an amazing source of cost reductions, or, find a way to jack up revenue. Assuming they have no new ideas for expense reduction, they have to chase the revenue. So, if load factors are high how can they raise incremental revenues? Well, unless the industry gets super smart in an instant, a price hike is out of the question. (Nobody will match, they’ll have to unwind the hike to maintain traffic and share.) Or, they have to find a way to hit even higher (paying) passenger counts. That means sales and promotions.

    Does that imply 2X EQM? Not at all. But it does mean some really heavy thinking — what can be done that UA, CO, US, and DL can’t match easily? I don’t have an answer for that.

    The other thing is that it only takes one other player launching a 2X EQM promo to make AA match in order to keep their customers from fleeing to the other legacies. (Well, a meaningful player — US is clearly not a meaningful player in AMR’s mind or they would already have matched the 2X EQM & RDM promo).

    All-in-all, I think it’s safe to anticipate some big and interesting promos. I also think UA will feel enough pain and show such a lack of imagination that they’ll hit the button on a 2X EQM deal. AA will match if UA does it.


  5. A quick investigation shows that all the legacies (AMR, CAL, DAL, LCC, UAL) all use a fiscal year that matches the calendar year.

    If just one of them had a fiscal year that ended in June, they’d have a real problem. Managers would be tripping over themselves looking for ways to save the year and make up any revenue loss — their bonuses would be at risk. All it takes is one crazy but influential manager to want that bonus so badly that they sacrifice long term strategy for short term gain. It happens all the time….


  6. I think a DEQM period towards the end of the year when they (hopefully) find that their elite and revenue targets aren’t met is more likely.

  7. So if we end up getting DEQM due to the volcano, and volcanoes fall under the category of ‘act of God’, then God must really want us to have DEQM!

  8. Ben don’t be a traitor. You should just open a second UAL MP account. Or better yet pad the BD account. You should also know that CO is giving out SWU’s at the 100K level. (CO SWU’s are good on any fare as well)

    If you do try for EXP, in any case – I hope you like swivel seats. And rock hard frozen sundaes. And food that is burned – because they heat the whole tray. And Cigarette adapters. And lots of AAttitude. Enough said.
    And if you do try for EXP, buy the cheapest fares < 0.04 cents a mile – make them go broke.

    Personally, you'll need to shoot me first before I set foot in any trAAsh operated aircraft, lounge, or terminal, worldwide.

  9. AA is not bad at all. On my last flight, and I can’t even remember the last time I set foot on AA, the food was very good (lots better than UA) and the sundae was soft and nicely presented (unlike the rock I got from UA). May be I was got lucky 😉

  10. While I doubt there will be a DEQM promo, I would go for having status on a competing alliance if offered.

    I won’t go for EXP, but having status in another alliance may be useful when I have no choice but have to fly a non-Star carrier.

  11. we should start another poll, “If AA offers DEQM, will Lucky actually go for EXP” my vote is no. There was no better time to do that then last year when they offered the second DEQM, and you still held out, i don’t see that changing this year, especially with AA fares so high and no way of crazy routings, and the fact that you’re trying to get to 250,000 EQM on UA asap so you could win the elite choice competition.

  12. I have to weigh in on 2nd Quarter targets below expectations and the need to drive revenue ASAP. I think DEQM is much more likely than it was looking just two weeks ago. Just my Double Cents.

  13. I seriously doubt UA will offer DEQM now. We are almost in May and travel is expected to pick up by June. UA is not going to offer DEQM during peak season, even if they do, it will be a short promotion. I just don’t see them extending the DEQM period into July or August.

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