Singapore Airlines raises price of Star Alliance Round The World awards

Last Updated:

Star Alliance Round The World awards will require 11-17% more KrisFlyer miles, effective 5 July 2022.

The latest KrisFlyer devaluation has now come into effect, and I’m sure yesterday evening was absolute mayhem for those rushing to lock in redemptions at the old rates (I hear the payment system even went down for a few hours). 

Now that the dust has settled a bit, Singapore Airlines has unveiled its changes to Star Alliance Round The World (RTW) awards. We knew this was coming already, but the exact magnitude was unknown till now.

RTW award prices will increase by 11-17%, which is roughly in line with the rest of the KrisFlyer price hikes. But I’ve never really believed that KrisFlyer RTW awards were a viable option, and I see nothing to change that opinion…

✈️ KrisFlyer 2022 Devaluation
🔺 Award Price Increases
  • All awards ticketed up till 4 July 2022 will follow existing prices, regardless of travel date
  • All awards ticketed from 5 July 2022 will follow new prices
  • Waitlists that are not ticketed by 4 July 2022 will be charged the new prices, regardless of when the waitlist request was made
  • Any date changes to an existing award ticket made from 5 July 2022 will not trigger the new prices
  • Saver awards on Singapore Airlines increasing by 8-16%
    • Economy: 8-16%
    • Premium Economy: 8-16%
    • Business: 10-15%
    • First: 10-13%
  • Advantage awards on Singapore Airlines unchanged, except travel from Singapore to Zones 10-13 (Africa, Middle East, Turkey, Europe, USA, Canada)
  • Upgrade awards increase by 4-5%
  • Star Alliance partner awards increasing by 8-16%
  • RTW awards increasing by 11-17%
👎 Changes to Stopover Policy
  • No option to add paid stopovers from 1 August 2022
  • Complimentary stopovers capped at 30 days from 1 August 2022
  • You can still make date changes to existing tickets with stopovers >30 days
📚 Further Reading

SIA increases cost of Star Alliance RTW awards

RTW awards will now cost 11-17% more

Singapore Airlines has increased the cost of Star Alliance RTW awards, effective 5 July 2022. 

Travel around the world with award flights to seven cities of your dreams. All you need is 180,000 KrisFlyer miles in Economy Class, 240,000 KrisFlyer miles in Business Class and 360,000 KrisFlyer miles in First Class.

From 5 July 2022 onwards, the redemption award levels will be revised to 200,000 KrisFlyer miles in Economy Class, 280,000 KrisFlyer miles in Business Class and 405,000 KrisFlyer miles in First Class.

-Singapore Airlines

I can’t say for certain how much notice was given, because I was waiting for an update to come to this page (which still reflects the old prices) and didn’t realise it’d been posted on this one (where the new prices are shown). 

In any case, the increase in price ranges from 11-17%, which is more or less in line with the increases we’ve seen to KrisFlyer Saver and Advantage awards, as well as regular Star Alliance awards.

 Before 5 JulFrom 5 JulIncrease
Economy180,000200,000+11%
Business240,000280,000+17%
First360,000405,000+13%

Should you book a RTW award?

ANA The Room Business Class

A RTW award sounds like the stuff of dreams. I mean, it already costs 223,000 miles to fly from Singapore to New York and back in Business Class. Topping up 57,000 more miles to visit six additional cities seems like a no-brainer. 

But reality is often disappointing. Truth be told, there isn’t much of a use case for Star Alliance RTW awards, or at least those issued through KrisFlyer. 

Why? Because the rules are extremely restrictive. The fixed-price nature of a RTW award compels you to make it as complicated as possible, in order to maximise value. But the more complicated the award is, the more likely you are to run afoul of one of the rules below:

🌎 KrisFlyer Star Alliance RTW Award Rules
  • Travel must be in one continuous direction with no backtracking
  • Maximum of 7 stopovers 
  • Maximum one stopover in a given city
  • Maximum of 2 stopovers in any given country
  • Surface sectors count as stopovers
  • Cannot leverage KrisFlyer Advantage space; only Saver
  • Total distance flown cannot exceed 35,000 miles
  • Maximum flight segments must not exceed 16
  • Journey must start and end in the same country
  • Must cross Atlantic and Pacific oceans exactly once

Then there’s the flexibility issue. Singapore Airlines does not permit any changes to partially-used tickets issued on partner airlines, such as RTW awards. This means that once you’ve flown the first leg of your journey, you cannot change any of your remaining flights!

Source

Let’s also not forget that Star Alliance partners like Lufthansa or Turkish Airlines may impose fuel surcharges, which could add hundreds of dollars or more per leg. 

We haven’t even begun to talk about the logistical nightmare of booking a RTW award, since all your legs must be available for confirmation before you can lock in something.

Even if you know how to search for award space through KVS or a partner website, you have a very long phone call ahead with the CSO (trust me, you don’t want to fill up this form and wait for them to get back), who may not even be familiar with how to book such an award. Who’s to say that award space won’t disappear in the meantime, putting you back to square one? 

If you really want to see the world with your miles, I’d much sooner recommend booking an Asia Miles multi-carrier award, which offers more flexibility and lower prices. 

 Asia Miles MCAKrisFlyer RTW
Max. Distance50,000 miles35,000 miles
Max. Stopovers57
Max. Transfers2Not specified, but maximum of 16 flight segments including transfers
Max. open-jaws2 (diff. airports in same city do not count towards open jaw allowance eg. HND/NRT)En route open jaws (“surface sectors”) count as stopovers, destination open jaw permitted (diff. airports in the same city count as stopovers eg. HND/NRT)
Must cross Atlantic & PacificNoYes
BacktrackingYesNo
Visit same cityYesNo
Change after departureYesNo
Cost in miles (J/F)55-240K/ 70-345K280/405K

For more details, refer to the post below. 

Planning a round-the-world award? Forget KrisFlyer; use Asia Miles’ best-kept secret

Conclusion

Singapore Airlines has hiked the cost of Star Alliance RTW awards by 11-17%, with a First Class trip now maxing out at 405,000 miles. 

No one likes devaluations, but frankly speaking, KrisFlyer’s RTW award was always more of an academic exercise than anything else. In practice, very few people will be affected by the change, and I’d be much more concerned if something happened to Asia Miles’ MCA chart. 

Did you ever manage to book a KrisFlyer RTW award? How complex was it?

Aaron Wong
Aaron Wong
Aaron founded The Milelion to help people travel better for less and impress chiobu. He was 50% successful.

Similar Articles

Comments

Subscribe
Notify of
guest

13 Comments
Oldest
Newest
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Fees

I just received an email from Virgin Australia. Their rates for partner airline redemptions is going up – but the real kicker is that there will be a new USD$150 carrier charge for business redemptions on SQ in addition to the standard taxes and fees.

D K

I thanked my lucky star yesterday morning when I managed to get 5 business tickets from JFK to SIN in December 2022. Then the payment crashed. I called SQ and was promptly attended – I thought nothing else could go wrong. The tickets were still held in the system – I just needed to pay the taxes on the phone. I thought I might as well just book another 5 SIN-JFK business tickets (mixture of savers and advantage for 2 adults and 3 children). How wrong can I be? One hour later, multiple apologies from the CSO, I was still… Read more »

Last edited 5 months ago by D K
JHH

Eva has hefty fuel surcharges though

TCT

We were hit by the payment glitch. Got booking reference and cards were charged but tickets not issued. Now still cannot get through to the agents. We had just enough miles for tickets at the old rates. Fingers crossed. Anyone can share whether SQ allow the transaction to go through (payment gateway glitch is not our fault)?

Last edited 5 months ago by TCT
John

My case was as bad for a different reason. I had waitlisted flights and one confirmed flight. Waited until 11pm, and decided the waitlisted flights were history and would ticket the confirmed flight. Go to ticket it, and find the new miles are already showing. Immediately called SQ and said why – it is still an hour before mid-night. The lady could not help me. Said the redemption team would call back. Am still waiting. Really terrible. I will they honor the old mile rate? Am doubtful.

TCT

Called yesterday night and today again (and again). Waited for 30min to speak to CSOs who were helpless. All they could say is to wait for redemption team to call back within 72 hrs (that is 3 days!)… frankly i am quite disappointed at the service level (or lack thereof).

Xin

Booked a 7 leg *A rtw thru SQ in 2019-20, just before covid materialised. The best and really only way is to check all availability and routes yourself using the paid flight awards tool, schedule a time with SQ and get them to book it on the spot.

Took 3 weeks of planning and 2 phone calls of 2 hours each but by god we did it. What an adventure. Totally worth it despite 3k in taxes for 2 tickets.

Xin

Just saw this. Certainly, I was worried about changes but tried to mitigate the risk of needing changes by flying through hubs that offered multiple SQ/*A flights on our route, and also buffering extra days on our itinerary to diminish risk of being late and missing flights. I also obsessively checked for flight changes and delays, which did happen a fair bit esp in South America. To SQ’s credit, there was 1 change I needed when stuck in the Maldives for an extra day due to a diving incident – I explained it was medically necessary to delay my flight… Read more »

Mileshedgehog

This sounds really lovely. Congrats. 1.5K in tax per ticket is a small price to pay

Rtw

I did mine in end 2019 and have leftover sectors in 2020 but covid struck. Sq is nice to reissue the ticket via other routes cos the old route is impossible to find redemption tickets.
Just that I need to backtrack to Singapore before flying out again. Hence backtracking is possible for RTW.

David

Have the RTW routings prepared in advance, plus options for unavailability, make a trip to the ticket office at ION Orchard, and sort it out in one or two hours.

Eric N

I’ve had 250k miles since 2020 and wanted to do the RTW but Covid has delayed the plan. Email
[email protected] on May 31st with booking form filled but only received reply 1-2 week later. The reply simply said no flight available even though I said my dates are flexible.
A few back and forth later, I called +65 6223 8888 several times, each received a different answer, the price jumped, now I barely have enough for Economy.
The saga still hasn’t ended and it’s going in circle

CREDIT CARD SIGN UP BONUSES

Advertisment

Featured Deals

Advertisment

Follow us

7,110FansLike
2,641FollowersFollow

TAGS