Cathay Pacific removing carrier-imposed surcharges from 1 May 2020

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A couple of days ago, Cathay Pacific announced that it is removing fuel surcharges from all flight tickets issued from 1 May 2020. This only applies to Cathay Pacific and Cathay Dragon flights and does not apply to flights on partner airlines booked with Asia Miles.

What does it mean?

To put it very simply, if you are booking a revenue ticket (paying for the ticket), nothing much will change. If you are booking an award ticket with Asia Miles, there will still be airport taxes and fees to add on to the miles that you are redeeming. However, there will no longer be fuel surcharges on award tickets.

In short, you will be saving about $85 (HKD 465) of carrier-imposed charges on every one-way award bookings departing Singapore (unless if Hong Kong is your final destination), no matter which class you are flying. This saving doubles if you are booking a round trip flight.

Route from Singapore Before After Savings
Hong Kong $57 $42 $15
Frankfurt via Hong Kong $169 $84 $85
Auckland via Hong Kong $198 $113 $85
New York via Hong Kong $193 $108 $85
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Valuation of Asia Miles

Saving $85 per award booking may not sound like a lot. However, it now makes sense to book Economy flights with Asia Miles, especially when you can redeem flights to parts of Japan and South Korea for only 10,000 miles. More on Asia Miles sweet spots in an upcoming article.

I have decided to increase my valuation of Asia Miles from $0.018 to $0.019 per mile. This is the second appreciation in value in just 4 months. This also means that I now value Asia Miles 12% more than Krisflyer miles.

This appreciation in the value of Asia Miles also naturally appreciates the value of all my bank miles and points (except OCBC’s). I have also reflected this change in our free Credit Card Management Spreadsheet.

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Final nail in OCBC’s coffin?

If I had put all my foreign currency spending on my OCBC 90°N last year, I’d be pulling my hair right now as OCBC only has one transfer partner, Krisflyer. I do have some OCBC Travel$ in my account from Airbnb, Expedia and Agoda bookings last year that gave me 8 MPD. These miles will not expire and they are sitting in my OCBC account until the day OCBC has more transfer partners or when they are not able to waive my card’s annual fee.

If you are new to the Miles Game, there is no good reason to accumulate miles with an OCBC card right now.


Conclusion

I am not important enough and do not need to fly to the other side of the globe as fast as I can. For that reason, I do not mind a short stopover in Hong Kong in their flagship lounges. With limited sweet spots, I do not have much good-value use of my Krisflyer miles right now (or when travel is possible again).

This is a brilliant move by Cathay Pacific. Is it too much to remove these surcharges from flights on partner airlines booked with Asia Miles as well? 😛

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2 thoughts on “Cathay Pacific removing carrier-imposed surcharges from 1 May 2020”

  1. Hello, given this new move by cathay, is there any sweet spot in CX that you think we should look forward to? hoping to see an article on the sweet spots for CX! thank you

    Reply

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