Philippine Airlines reduces Mabuhay Miles earning rates!

The annual reward program devaluations continues: Philippine Airlines announced that they are reducing the mileage earn rates in their rewards program Mabuhay Miles. Fortunately, it’s a small adjustment and only a small number of fare classes are impacted. Check out the new earning tables and when they are effective – if you have upcoming travel plans with Philippine Airlines, it might make sense to book quickly to capture the old mileage accrual rates!

Each year, rewards programs adjust their earning and redemption rates and now it’s Philippine Airlines turn: Effective for tickets issued from January 25, 2019 (March 23, 2019 for Korea/Japan routes), reduced accrual rates apply. The top earning rate for full-fare business class tickets (C, J) is reduced from 175% to 150% and discounted businss class tickets (I). Earning in the newly introduced Premium Economy class (N, W) is reduced from 125% to 100%. Discounted economy class tickets are also reduced, K from 75% to 50% and Q from 100% to 75%.

While these seem like minor adjustments, it’s curious that Philippine Airlines (PAL) is reducing the earnings for their updated Business Class and their just recently introduced Premium Economy class! It’s unclear to me, whether PAL thinks they don’t need to entice premium cabin travelers with miles or this is cost driven. 

Philippine Airlines A350 Business Class

While their Business Class and Premium Economy is now more competitive and they offer exclusive non-stop flights on some routes from the US and Canada to Manila, they want to compete in the market of connecting passengers from North America to Asia – and that’s a very competitive market with both better and cheaper products available. 

If you are planning to purchase tickets in the affected fare classes, it might make sense to have the tickets issued by January 24, 2019 (March 22, 2019 Korea/Japan) to earn at the old rates. 

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Philippine Airlines reduces Mabuhay Miles earning rates! — 2 Comments

  1. Well that is not all..Philippine Airlines just revamped their website and when it came back online there is no longer a button to select payment with Mabuhay Miles. I immediately complained to Mabuhay Miles, the NEW separate department to PAL, who just kept sending me weird replies that didn’t say anything. ( I have the email string ) I carried on and have only got as far as a Supervisor at Mabuhay Miles, even though I cc’d to Corporate Comms. Seems MM don’t want to pass my complaint onto PAL. She waffled something about future plans…!!!! I cannot honestly believe that PAL really think they can just expect their regular customers to call from London on the fake London number and go through the pain of blindly looking for the best date to travel, which was the subject of so many complaints previously. Why did they do this? Well maybe for the same reason, how most government offices work in Philippines. They take your complaint and you never get a reply. In effect the departments will not admit to errors and try to garner favour by smothering the issue. Then they EVENTUALLY do something about it and still fail to acknowledge your help. I thought PAL had changed under the COO, but despite being requested to provide feedback on 2 flights and giving a big list of potential improvements, PAL have promised but never responded to what they themselves requested from me.

    I do not understand how Skytrax have selected PAL as a 4 star airline, because as soon as there is a problem, PAL goes blank and expects it’s customers to wait for months not hours. Skytrax needs to expand its audit to include customer satisfaction, because we do not appreciate being fobbed off or ignored. Currently, Philippines style, they focus on what can keep their jobs and income and not TRUE Customer Service.

    As I mentioned to them, if they do not sharpen up their act, I will publish my lists of issues online, rather than with them…with issues such as a sharp piece of metal sticking out of the bulkhead in front of me at head-height. When I pointed this out nicely to the cabin crew the reply was ” Oh yes…wow”. They asked for feedback, so I took to recording issues, positive and negative, for their review. But what a waste of time.

    As the piece above alluded to…their Premium Economy is not up to much and certainly does not warrant paying so much extra..the points are often what just about swings it. Feels like they are making suicidal decisions, when they have only improved from rubbish to the same level as a GOOD airline.

    Not impressed with an airline that has reduced luggage limits, decreased points, makes them almost impossible to use and is very expensive except for maybe 2 months of the year, Feb and March when their prices compare favourably to better airlines.

    The Heart of the Filipino.

    • Sorry you encountered a long list of issues.
      With regards to Mabuhay Miles, it seems that they ran into issues with the new system. I received an email confirming delays in the implementation and it’s back to making award reservations by phone.
      The system switch has also logged me out of the Mabuhay Miles website and I can’t log in anymore. Would be interesting to hear other member’s experience.a
      With regards to service and product, I found the onboard service to be some of the most friendly and genuinely attentive in the industry and it does deserve the high SkyTrax rating in my opinion. The new planes also are much improved and I believe contributed to the rating.
      Unfortunately, that is not true for the call center service. While they are also friendly, they are not prepared to deal with unusual or exceptional issues. From what I’ve seen with PAL and other Filipino businesses, service staff is following a tight script and is not empowered to make decisions or handle exceptions. And management staff will refuse to engage customers directly, pushing difficult problems back to frontline staff. This results in the poor experience you had when dealing with non-standard issues. This is a management problem and will take a long time to fix.
      Feel free to share your experience in comments of my Economy Class, Business Class and Mabuhay Lounge reviews – reader opinions are very valuable to other readers!

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