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Old 16th Nov 2011, 18:09   #1 (permalink)
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: UK
Posts: 271
KLM Flying Blue

I'm a Gold Elite Plus member of the KLM Sky Team Flying Blue programme, and have just received the following email.
Quote:
We would like to advise you of a recent change to your paid seating privileges on KLM flights. Previously, Flying Blue Gold members could book seats with extra legroom and seats in a row of two free of charge. For Economy Comfort seating, Gold members enjoyed a 50% discount.

We have now aligned our policy across all paid seating options on KLM flights. This means you will now receive a 50% discount across all of the paid seating options available in KLM Economy Class – that is, seats with extra legroom, seats in a row of two and Economy Comfort seating.

This change makes KLM’s paid seating options more accessible for all of our Flying Blue Elite members. We hope that you understand the nature of this alignment and look forward to taking you further with the privileges of your Flying Blue membership.
I'm left wondering why the airlines would expect customers to remain loyal anymore? Essentially they are saying "something we used to give you free as a reward for your loyalty we're now going to charge you for, albeit with a discount."
jackieofalltrades is offline   Reply
Old 16th Nov 2011, 20:22   #2 (permalink)
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Birmingham
Posts: 10
Flying Blue

Seems a strange time of year to introduce this. I have FB gold and have been gold/platinum on and off for years. Might give another scheme a go next year - also they say the benefits are being "aligned" I hate to lecture the Dutch on English - after all, they speak it so well. However, the correct term is "withdrawn"
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Old 17th Nov 2011, 00:19   #3 (permalink)
Paxing All Over The World
 
Join Date: May 2001
Location: Hertfordshire, UK.
Age: 57
Posts: 6,993
It's all about money and our unwillingness to part with it.

The generations that have grown up with the pick-n-pay method (LoCo / LCC) think nothing of this. It's only us that recall the 'full service carriers' that don't like it. In another 20 years or so, the new pricing model will have established itself even more than it has now.

Even in the boom days before the great crash, pax responded to the lowest ticket price and this recession is going to last for another five years - at least. If the carrier gets even 10% of people paying to reserve seats, then that's money they would not otherwise have had.

I am not unsympathetic to your point - but there ain't no going back. Whilst some of the middle eastern carriers will provide the old services, for us they are all long haul. The inter-European pricing model was changed irrevocably in 1992, when the EU deregulated the air industry in Europe, giving carriers from one EU country the right to operate scheduled services between other EU states. Here we are 19 years later with the changes about (I'd guess) 75% of the way through. That is, between how it was 20 years ago and how it will be in another 10.

I dare say someone will be able to tell us how much cheaper the relative price is these days than in 1992 and the concurrent increase in the cost of living. Every single business in the western world is fighting the same problems.

Lastly, loyalty? I would suggest that is none now. Holiday pax buy on price. Biz now tends to buy on price, via the discounts that don't get advertised. There is little point in being loyal. Price and convenience of schedule wins.
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