Don’t leave any miles on the table: TPG staff success story

Jan 22, 2020

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We are continuing to share the TPG staff’s travel triumphs and (occasional!) failures to help our readers maximise their travel. This week, it’s my turn to share my experience persevering in order to earn miles for a flight.

“Late last year, I flew to Monrovia, Liberia to participate in the PeaceJam Youth Leadership Conference, which TPG has supported for many years. I flew from London (LHR) to Monrovia (ROB) via Brussels with Brussels Airlines. The flight was booked as a cash fare in T class, which is the airline’s discount economy class.

After I’d taken the flight, I realised I had not entered a loyalty number on the booking, so I didn’t collect any points or miles for the flights. No problem, I thought, as I could do a retroactive claim. As a member of Star Alliance, I chose to credit the flights to Singapore Airlines’ KrisFlyer programme, which is my primary (and favourite) Star Alliance programme as a U.K.-based flyer. I completed a retroactive claim online but was disappointed to receive an email advising me that T class fares on Brussels Airlines were not eligible for mileage accrual — it was a discounted economy fare.

I could have just given up on this relatively small number of miles but decided to persevere and checked if any Star Alliance programmes would award miles for T class fares on Brussels Airlines. I am a member of United’s Mileage Plus programme. I don’t really earn and burn miles in this programme, but do log in from time to time to use its search function to check for award availability on Star Alliance airlines.

I then submitted a retroactive claim to United and was rewarded with 1,700 miles. While not a huge amount, United miles never expire, so I can keep them there until I’m ready to use them.

The lesson learned here is that just because one programme does not award miles for a particular fare class on a particular partner or alliance airline, it does not mean all programmes will not. Consider using a tool like WhereToCredit to ensure you don’t leave any valuable miles on the table!”

Featured image by Ben Smithson / The Points Guy

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