Singapore Krisflyer, loyalty program of Singapore Airlines, increased the price of various partner award prices on April 16, 2019. These changes weren’t without notice, as they announced in March the impending devaluation. Devaluations always suck but are inevitable.
Singapore devaluations sting in a special way as they are by far the easiest mile to earn. Every major transferrable point currency–Chase Ultimate Rewards, Amex Membership Rewards, Citi Thank You Points, Capital One miles and Marriott Rewards–transfer to Singapore Krisflyer, so they are the sweetheart of foreign loyalty programs.
Thankfully the changes weren’t drastic. Economy award prices didn’t change, but Business and First Class prices did. According to Milelion, Business Class prices have increased between 8 and 12%, and First Class prices between 6 and 10%.
For your own reference:
- Singapore Star Alliance partner award chart, pre-April 16, 2019 devaluation
- Singapore Star Alliance partner award chart, effective April 16, 2019
To be clear, the award chart price hikes I’m talking about today are those redeeming Singapore miles on Star Alliance partner airlines. Singapore has a different award chart for flying its own planes, and that did not change on April 16. Singapore award prices flying Singapore did increase back in January of this year, however. That devaluation was similar in that economy prices mostly stayed the same and premium cabin prices increased.
Singapore’s award chart flying Alaska, a non-allied partner, has not changed.
Awards that Got More Expensive
All prices listed below are one way. I picked these as examples either because they are popular routes, I use them often, or they represent a very big percentage increase in price. The table is for awards touching the US.
|From Canada & Continental US to/from:||Old Award Price (pre-April 16)||Current Award Price|
|Elsewhere within Canada, the Continental US, and Alaska||20,000||23,000|
|Hawaii in United Business||30,000||34,500|
|South America in Business||50,000||57,500|
|South America in First Class||70,000||80,500|
|Europe in Business||65,000||72,000|
|Europe in First||95,000||107,500|
|Central/South Asia in Business||110,000||122,000|
|Central/South Asia in First||145,000||160,000|
Here are some others outside the Continental US that I’m sad to see get pricier…
From Hawaii to South America in Business:
- was 40,000 miles
- is now 46,000 miles
Within South America in Business
- was 20,000
- is now 23,000 miles
A Couple Devalued Award Prices That Remain Competitive
Continental US to Hawaii for 34.5k: Singapore’s new price to Hawaii is still one of the best options to redeem on United Business award space to Hawaii. ANA’s is a touch better at 34,000 miles one way, but require roundtrip bookings. Asiana’s is the best at a crazy 27.5k, but not many people have Asiana miles or tons of access to them (only Marriott Rewards transfer, 3:1).
Hawaii to South America for 46k: Due to the fact that Singapore lumps Hawaii and Central America into the same award region, it costs less miles to get from Hawaii to South America than it does from the continental US to South America. Even though you need to fly through the 48 to get there.
Aside from Asiana which charges just 35k one way to fly Business between Hawaii and South America, which I wouldn’t consider a viable option for most, I don’t know of a better price.
Good Value Economy Awards (That Did Not Change in Price)
- Within Canada and Continental US + Alaska in United Economy for 12,500 miles
- From Continental US to Hawaii in United Economy for 17,500 miles
- From Continental US to South America in Economy for 30,000 miles
- From Hawaii to South America in Economy for 25,000 miles
- From Continental US to Europe in Economy for 27,500 miles
- Within South America in Economy for 12,500 miles
- Within Australia and New Zealand in Air New Zealand economy for 12,500 miles and no fuel surcharges
- From Australia/New Zealand to Oceania in Air New Zealand economy for 12,500 miles and no fuel surcharges
I’m guessing the Singapore award US based travelers utilize the most is to Hawaii in Business, and that only went up 4,500 miles. I don’t see that as a game-changer.
The trip goal people tell me about most often through my Free Credit Card Consultation Service is Business Class to Europe. The jump of Singapore’s price from 65,000 to 72,000 doesn’t really matter when most of these people have or end up collecting Ultimate Rewards and would utilize United MileagePlus in that instance instead (60k one way on United, 70k one way on any other Star Alliance carrier).
Personally, I’m the most bummed about the jump from 50k to 57.5k to fly United Business to South America from the US. While not a great deal to northern South America, it’s one of the best–at least with easily accessible miles–to southern South America. I split my time between Buenos Aires and the US so I utilized that award relatively often.
I will say though that necessity is the mother of invention… or in this case, incentive to research. I realized earlier this afternoon that I can fly Delta One between the US and Buenos Aires for 45,000 Virgin Atlantic miles one way and that it doesn’t have to be booked roundtrip for 90k. Up until today I was under the impression that Virgin Atlantic awards flying Delta had to be roundtrip, but a Flying Club rep put a one-way Delta One award on hold for me today, Atlanta to Buenos Aires, and quoted 45,000 Flying Club miles + $5.60 in taxes. More on that to come.
ANA’s 88,000 mile price to fly United roundtrip between the US and South America is a great potential award to look towards booking in the future as well, as I see more United Business award space than any other alliance’s to Buenos Aires. ANA does require roundtrip bookings though, which in my opinion isn’t ideal. To most I imagine that’s not as big of a downer, and should be a top option for booking United Business to the bottom of South America.
Singapore awards flying Star Alliance partners now cost more miles than they did earlier in April. Thankfully the devaluation wasn’t a gruesome one and they at least gave some notice. There’s still plenty of value to be had redeeming Singapore miles, especially when they are the easiest to accrue.
Which awards were you sad to see get pricier? What will you book anyways?