Jet Airways’ JetPrivilege program has been reinventing itself over the past few months. First, there was a rehash of the earn and burn rates for mileage. While earn rates went up to a minimum of 500 JP Miles, burn rates went upwards as well.

JetPrivilege has now launched a family pooling feature of miles, called MyFamily+. As a part of a family account, you can now pool the miles of your family members to redeem for tickets on Jet Airways and their partners. However, to be able to join a family account, you should be an immediate family member of the person who is nominated to be the Head of Family.

Salient features of the new setup are:

  • Between 1 to 7 immediate family members can be added to the Family account
  • JetPrivilege charges the head of family with 1000 JPMiles to activate the family account feature, and 250 miles for addition of every member to the family account. Even when you want to leave the family club, the initiator of the request (HoF or member) will be charged with 250 Miles to leave the group.
  • Each Member of the Family including kids & Head of the Family, continues to remain as an individual JetPrivilege members for accruals / redemptions / transfers of JPMiles from their respective JetPrivilege membership accounts.
  • The eligible members of the family (with respect to the Head of the Family) are: Parents, Spouse and Children.

At this time, only JP account holders with an Indian account will be able to sign up for this family relationship. Also, verification will be done before the accounts are linked to each other.

How does the pooling work?

When people join in the family club, their miles will remain in their own accounts. However, the Head of Family can pool their miles into his/her account, which means they will be transferred under his account (debit from member of family account and credit to HoF account). This transfer cannot be reversed at a later time. This process is not automatic and needs manually pushing the buttons by the HoF to pool the miles. Only then will the miles transfer oneway happen. Redemption will be done as usual once the miles are pooled in, and depends on the availability in the program.

Pooling works only for redeemable miles, not for status earning. So if you think you could merge the tier points in 4 accounts to make one platinum account, not happening!

How does this benefit you?

Frequent flyer programs from time to time allow you to pool miles from your family members, such as Air India which allows pooling of miles with your spouse, and the now defunct Kingfisher airlines. Etihad also has a Family account feature, however, the number of miles you earn in the family account is lesser than those earned in the individual account.

Benefits are that you can use the miles of the entire family to get a redemption ticket in case you don’t fly as much, and hence you reduce the breakage of miles in the various accounts.

Should you do it?

I wouldn’t recommend jumping into it immediately, since you’d be set off by a couple of thousand miles in this case if you linked a few accounts together. Do it if you have several accounts with small mileage amounts in them.

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Posted by Ajay Awtaney | 5 Comments

Jet Airways and American Express have been together for roughly two years now, and American Express has decided it needs to freshen up the product. So, in this spirit, multiple efforts have happened in the past few months. The new changes come into effect from October 20, 2014.

Firstly, American Express dropped the 1st year pricing on this card to INR 5000 along with 10000 JP Miles for sign up, with 2nd year pricing continuing to be INR 10,000. You could add another 2,000 JP Miles by taking your card via a referral. They also added 7 lounges earlier this year, although for JP co-branded cards, these were paid lounges and not free.

Some good and some bad changes coming up to the card.

Mileage Earning is being devalued:

Till so far, you earned 6 JP Miles/INR 100 spent for every spend, and 12 JP Miles/INR 100 spent for Jet Airways website. Now, you will earn 8 JPMiles/INR 150 spent and 16 JP Miles/INR 100 spent for Jet Airways (website). This is a 12% devaluation in the number of JP Miles you can earn for your spend.

The bigger change is the removal of following categories from earning any JP Miles at all:

  • Insurance payments
  • Fuel, including petrol, diesel, CNG from oil marketing companies
  • Utilities, including electricity, water and gas.

Lounge access is being enhanced:

Earlier this year, Jet Airways notified a list of lounges which you could use for INR 500 per visit with your Jet Airways co-branded credit card. This apart from the Mumbai and Delhi Amex lounges. Now, you can use the following lounges free of cost across India (only to primary cardmembers).

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Here is a review of some of these lounges: Mumbai Amex Lounge & Bengaluru Plaza Premium Lounge.

Membership to Trident’s Privilege Program at the Gold Tier

Complimentary membership for the Trident Hotel’s loyalty program is being added. You will get the Gold Tier to start for 2 years, along with 2 room upgrade vouchers. If you stay at the Trident Hotels, which is the business hotel brand for the Oberoi Hotels, you should be happy about this move. Benefits include:

  • Express check in and check out
  • Early check in (Subject to availability)
  • Late check out till 3 p.m. (subject to availability)
  • Double Occupancy at no extra charges
  • 50% savings on rack rate of suites on weekends (Friday to Sunday)

Complimentary night’s stay for at Oberoi properties

For some of the Oberoi properties, you get to stay one night extra with all benefits for 3 nights/2 nights paid stays. The details are here.

Essentially, no ground breaking enhancements unless you use this as your sole travel credit card, and personally I’d continue to keep my JP Amex in my pocket, but allocate only the relevant spend to this card.

How do you feel about these changes to the JP Amex card?

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Starwood’s loyalty program SPG has gone ahead and added a transfer partner which could be of benefit for those who like their Jet Airways miles. Just this morning, they’ve announced their partnership with Jet Airways, which means you can now transfer Starwood points 1:1 into Jet Airways JetPrivilege program. But 1:1 is not a very interesting option for me since I value SPG Starpoints more than Jet Airways miles.

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However, just like with other programs where SPG Starpoints transfer into, you can transfer in multiple of 20,000 points, and you get a bonus of 5,000 miles added to your transfer from SPG. So, while 19,999 Starpoints = 19,999 JPMiles, 20,000 Starpoints = 25,000 JPMiles. You can transfer upto 79,999 Starpoints at a time to your JPMiles account.

Double JPMiles on Starwood stays till December 31, 2014

The partnership between Jet Airways and SPG also allows you to earn JPMiles instead of SPG points on your stays with Starwood. Base members earn 2 JPMiles per 1 USD spent, and Gold and Platinum members get 3 JPMiles per 1 USD spent at Starwood hotels across the world.

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To commemorate their partnership, SPG will offer double JPMiles on Starwood stays till December 31, 2014. For the duration of this promotion, you would earn double JPMiles if you have registered and then set JPMiles as your currency of choice at SPG.com/moremiles.

That is one more interesting opportunity to earn JPMiles in recent times.

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