Farzan
Topic Author
Posts: 73
Joined: Thu Jul 12, 2007 9:55 pm

Secret Frequent Flyer Levels

Thu Feb 05, 2009 5:29 am

I was surprised to receive an email from SAS last week inviting me to join a “small circle of Gold members” who have earned the right to priority award seating. This email was obviously going out to members who had earned twice the qualifying number of miles required for gold level.

That indicates that there is some kind of an unpublished elite status above the highest official SAS level. I am not sure that I like such a practice. Many travelers will select a certain airline in order to earn miles and even more so by years end when it is time to qualify for a certain elite level. So if I reach the highest level, I am early at the airport, manage to be #1 on the waiting list for an upgrade, I would not expect the seat to be allocated to someone with the same official status but further down the list.

I have actually suspected that there was something like this in place with some airlines but this is the first time I see it on print. I remember some years ago a gate agent at CO put me in first class in SFO on a fully booked flight which required her to bump another passenger off the plane. When I asked her how that was possible she said. “With your elite status not even the President could take your seat away”. Joke off course, but anyway.

Anyone who know how common it is for airlines to use a secret or unpublished elite level to pamper their most frequent customers?
 
UAL4ever
Posts: 51
Joined: Tue Aug 16, 2005 2:45 pm

RE: Secret Frequent Flyer Levels

Thu Feb 05, 2009 5:44 am

Well I guess UA Global Services could fall under this category. They do not publicize qualifying requirements and it is invitation only. Although, people do know that it exists.
 
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NZ107
Posts: 4946
Joined: Sun Jul 10, 2005 6:51 pm

RE: Secret Frequent Flyer Levels

Thu Feb 05, 2009 6:00 am

CX have a tier called "Invitation" which is above platinum. I think my grandad got invited to events such as Christmas parties at the CEO's house in Hong Kong and also got things like the entire range of Cathay's 60th Anniversary model set all in a great perspex box.. And guess who got that? Big grin

Quite expected for someone who clocked 3.5 million miles with CX. I wish that card could be passed on to me..
It's all about the destination AND the journey.
 
r12055p
Posts: 28
Joined: Sun Jul 20, 2008 5:34 am

RE: Secret Frequent Flyer Levels

Thu Feb 05, 2009 6:11 am

BA has an exclusive membership called Premier. It includes all of the benefits of Gold plus some. I believe they have to get the CEO to sign off on people who are given this status.
 
SA7700
Posts: 2930
Joined: Thu Dec 18, 2003 9:38 pm

RE: Secret Frequent Flyer Levels

Thu Feb 05, 2009 8:45 am

AFAIK SA has Platinum Elect membership for VIP's and South African-born Oscar-winners like Charlize Theron.  Wink


Rgds

SA7700
When you are doing stuff that nobody has done before, there is no manual – Kevin McCloud (Grand Designs)
 
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fbgdavidson
Posts: 3872
Joined: Thu Oct 14, 2004 6:25 am

RE: Secret Frequent Flyer Levels

Sun Feb 08, 2009 5:54 pm

A lot of airlines have unpublished tiers:
-BA have Premier (only around 1200 members with special discounts and benefits like lounge access for two guests to any lounge, even when not flying BA) and Gold Guest List for those who earn 3000+ tier points in two consecutive years.
-United Global Services - invitation only but plenty of them around.
-AA Concierge Key
-SAS Pandion
-CO Chairman's Circle
-There's a couple of Delta ones. Flying Colonel was one but I think that ended and there's another.
-Air France Club 2000 was part of Frequence Plus.
-Qantas Chairman's Circle.
-There's a Virgin Atlantic one, V50 I believe it is called.

Quoting NZ107 (Reply 2):
CX have a tier called "Invitation" which is above platinum.

Above Diamond....
"My first job was selling doors, door to door, that's a tough job innit" - Bill Bailey
 
eric
Posts: 324
Joined: Sun Dec 14, 2003 9:37 am

RE: Secret Frequent Flyer Levels

Sun Feb 08, 2009 9:08 pm



Quoting Farzan (Thread starter):
a “small circle of Gold members”

Where you invited to you join Pandion level or was this a reference to something else? Pandion is well established and given to around 3000 members of Eurobonus. It is usually achieved by flying and is based on revenue provided over the last 2 or 3 years. If it is something else, then it would appear that SAS are introducing a new level between Gold and Pandio akin to BA's Gold Guest List.

If it is Pandion, the experience on Flyertalk is that it does very little in terms of recognition.

Quoting Fbgdavidson (Reply 5):
BA have Premier (only around 1200 members with special discounts and benefits like lounge access for two guests to any lounge, even when not flying BA) and Gold Guest List for those who earn 3000+ tier points in two consecutive years.

As you know, and worth pointing out is that Premier is not usually received by flying but given to people in commerically important positions, such as heads of large travel budgets, CEO's and some celebrities.
n
 
ThirtyEcho
Posts: 1411
Joined: Tue Jan 01, 2002 1:21 am

RE: Secret Frequent Flyer Levels

Tue Feb 10, 2009 9:19 am

Here is one so secret that, even though I benefited from it for years, I never knew what in the hell it was:

The long story short is that I once had to go to LAX on business and my ticket was booked and paid for by the production company of a VERY famous motion picture producer; first class, how very nice of them.

The next time that I flew on the same airline, the agent typed my name into the computer and just stood there in surprised silence for a few seconds. He finally said,"I've never seen this before, and I don't know anything about you, but you must be some kind of Super-VIP Gold-Platinum something because the computer says that, whenever possible, we are to block the seat next to you so that you have plenty of room."

That went on with this airline for a few years and I never did find out more about what type of service this was.
 
deltairlines
Posts: 6953
Joined: Mon May 24, 1999 4:47 am

RE: Secret Frequent Flyer Levels

Wed Feb 11, 2009 1:17 am

Delta has Executive Partner. Perks above Platinum include a special phone number (where the agents can do everything - no passing the phone around), higher upgrade priority (above everyone else), an American Express gift card, free CRC, free Gold Medallion status for someone else, etc.

And CO Chairmen's Circle exists - I got to see the card the other day. I hear there's only around two of them flying any given day.
 
Braniff747SP
Posts: 2576
Joined: Sun Oct 26, 2008 4:56 am

RE: Secret Frequent Flyer Levels

Fri Feb 13, 2009 4:58 am

The lucky people that get these perks are extremely fortunate!
The 747 will always be the TRUE queen of the skies!
 
isitsafenow
Posts: 3413
Joined: Sun Feb 01, 2004 9:22 am

RE: Secret Frequent Flyer Levels

Fri Feb 13, 2009 3:20 pm



Quoting Braniff747SP (Reply 9):
The lucky people that get these perks are extremely fortunate!

With the amount of $$$ spent by those folks with the airline, right you are.....but they earned it.
safe
If two people agree on EVERYTHING, then one isn't necessary.
 
AA737-823
Posts: 5488
Joined: Wed Mar 01, 2000 11:10 am

RE: Secret Frequent Flyer Levels

Mon Feb 16, 2009 6:43 am



Quoting DeltAirlines (Reply 8):
And SA)">CO Chairmen's Circle exists - I got to see the card the other day. I hear there's only around two of them flying any given day.

That doesn't really make sense.
If it's based on frequency of travel, for example, then it must be the SAME TWO GUYS flying on any of these 'given days'. Either that, or they're not going to qualify next year!

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