Singapore Airlines is adjusting its award charts and booking policies later this month, increasing miles required on a number of routes while also dropping the oft-maligned fuel surcharge fees charged. The company is also dropping the 15% discount it has offered for online reward bookings on Singapore Airlines and SilkAir-operated flights as part of the revamp. The new rates go into effect for awards booked on or after 23 March 2017.
The new award pricing affects trips to/from Europe, Japan, Korea, Australia, New Zealand and the USA. Premium Economy award prices are not changing but Saver level awards in the other three cabins on board are increasing, typically a 5-10% increase with some going up as much as 15%. Trading a 7,500 point increase for the dropping of a $200+ YQ fee on the award booking is probably a good deal for most travelers as that’s a solid point valuation.
Alas, when the 15% online booking discount is cut off the deal is not quite as good. Paying 20,000 points more to “save” $327 on a business class award from San Francisco to Singapore is a harder sell than just the 8,000 points that award increased before the discount discontinuation is figured in.
Dropping the YQ fuel surcharge fee from award bookings is part of the company’s overall plan to drop the surcharge completely from its fare structure. Starting on 28 March 2017 fuel surcharges will be phased out of the company’s fare tables, replaced with higher base fares. This should not affect total fare paid, at least not initially, but it is an interesting shift in policy given the industry’s broader love of the YQ/YR surcharges to skew pricing. Apparently that’s no longer a desirable approach for Singapore Airlines. It does, however, mean that other airline partners selling award seats on SQ/MI metal will no longer levy the surcharges as they will no longer exist. That’s a nice change, even if getting the award space (particularly in premium cabins) is notoriously difficult.
Here are all the award charts that are changing with old numbers on top and new numbers below.