Back in February Singapore Airlines announced that it was planning to launch a blockchain-based airline loyalty digital wallet that would allow KrisFlyer members to spend their miles at everyday retail partners. A proof-of-concept exercise was carried out with KPMG Digital Village and Microsoft, and the program is currently undergoing further field testing with the goal of launching by August.
I’m all for having more ways of using miles, but as I noted in my analysis, the move was slightly worrying because it represents a step in the miles-as-money direction, something the US airlines did a while back (you can already use your miles to pay for coffee or a bagel in some United hubs). Such use cases tend to represent very poor value for miles.
Well, as we move closer to the targeted August launch date, more details about the proposed digital wallet have leaked. A couple of friends who work at KPMG have sent me a copy of the circular that went out to all staff on the intranet asking for volunteers:
We are currently working closely with Singapore Airlines to build and launch a new KrisPay product which is a mobile wallet for KrisFlyer members to use their miles for everyday spend at merchants.
We will be doing a market launch very soon and in preparation for this, we will be working with SIA and ESSO to pilot this with a privileged group of KrisFlyer members.
We are seeking 15 lucky KrisFlyer members from KPMG who will be one of the first in Singapore to be part of this exciting journey (miles will of course be given to you as well!)
Who are we looking for?
- People who would be driving between XXX and YYY dates
- Active KrisFlyer members (able to log-in to their KrisFlyer account)
- iOS or Android users
What will you be doing?
- Download the KrisPay app (download link to be provided to participants)
- Top up the KrisFlyer wallet using KrisFlyer miles (we will give you miles for free!)
- Drive to one of our pilot sites during one of the following timings: XX YY ZZ
- At the cashier, scan the merchant’s unique QR code when making payment
- Confirm the payment and its (sic) done!
(To avoid causing inconvenience to the actual field testing, I’ve redacted the dates and locations of the test. They’re not that important in the grand scheme of things anyway)