Pelago quietly nerfs 30% discount for SIA bookings; will add country restrictions

Pelago's 30% discount for SIA customers is now capped at just S$10-20, and additional geographic restrictions will be added from next week.

Back in August 2023, Pelago launched a very generous 30% discount (capped at S$35) on all activities, available to any customer with a Singapore Airlines PNR booking reference code.

This promotion was originally slated to run till 31 December 2023, but Pelago has quietly made some no-notice changes that nerf the value considerably:

  1. The 30% discount is now capped at S$20 for new users and S$10 for existing users
  2. The 30% discount will only be available for activities in the destination/layover countries of the booking reference code

The first change has already come into effect; the second will start “sometime next week”, per my conversations with Pelago.

Pelago’s revised 30% discount

  Previous Current
New Users 30% off, capped at S$35 30% off, capped at S$20
Existing Users 30% off, capped at S$10

Pelago is reducing the maximum discount available to Singapore Airlines customers.

Previously, all customers could enjoy a 30% discount off all Pelago bookings, capped at S$35. Effective immediately, the cap will depend on whether you’re a new or existing Pelago customer:

  • If this is your first-ever Pelago booking, you will enjoy 30% off, capped at S$20
  • If this is your second or subsequent Pelago booking, you will enjoy 30% off, capped at S$10
Example of new S$10 cap for existing Pelago user

In other words, the maximum discount an existing Pelago customer can enjoy has been cut from S$35 to just S$10, a reduction of 70%!

All bookings made before the change be honoured, but if you cancel and rebook, your discount will be subject to the new capping rules.

As before, a limit of one booking per PNR applies, regardless of the number of passengers in the booking. You do have the option to contact customer service and split a multi-passenger booking such that each passenger has his/her own PNR, but with the lower discount cap, the return on your effort will be likewise reduced. 

Other important things to note:

  • The discount is valid for both award bookings and cash bookings
  • PNRs can only be used from the date of their issuance up till the date of the last segment of the booking. For example, if the last flight in your PNR is 20 November, you must use the discount by 20 November
  • PNRs must be for confirmed flights; waitlisted bookings will not trigger the discount
  • Pure Scoot bookings are not eligible; however a mixed itinerary involving Singapore Airlines and Scoot flights is eligible provided the ticket is issued by Singapore Airlines

Additional geographic restrictions

  Previous Current
Activity restrictions Discount applies to all activities regardless of country Discount only applies to activities in the destination & layover country

Previously, there were no restrictions on the countries where the Pelago discount could be enjoyed. For example, you could book a Singapore Airlines flight to Bali, but use the discount for a tour in Sydney.

Pelago has informed me that additional restrictions will be added “sometime next week”, which limit you to booking activities in the destination and layover country. For example, if your PNR is for a SIN-FRA-JFK booking, you will only be able to enjoy the discount on activities In Germany and the USA. 

Which activities are eligible?

All Pelago activities, tickets and tours are eligible for this discount, except the following:

  • Universal Studios Japan SUPER NINTENDO WORLD
  • Universal Studios Japan Tickets (Direct Entry) l Studio Pass l Super Nintendo World

Of course, you’ll soon face the additional geographic restrictions mentioned in the previous section. 

Terms & Conditions

Pelago has updated the T&Cs on its SIA promo page to reflect these changes.

T&Cs
  • This promotion (“Promotion”) is organised by Encounters Pte Ltd (“Pelago”) and is valid for bookings made from 14 August (00:00 Singapore time) and 31 December 2023 (23:59 Singapore time) (“Promotion Period”).
  • During this Promotion Period, you will qualify for a 30% discount off your bookings made on www.pelago.co by entering your SQ Flight Booking Reference (PNR) and Last Name during checkout and prior to payment.
  • This Promotion is subject to the following restrictions:
    – Valid for use once per Flight Booking Reference Number (PNR), regardless of the number of passengers within a single SIA flight booking. PNR can only be used in this Promotion from the date PNR is issued up to the date of the last segment of the same SIA flight booking.
    – Discount value is capped at SGD 20.00, or currency equivalent for the 1st booking of the Pelago customer.
    – Discount value is capped at SGD 10.00, or currency equivalent for the 2nd booking of the Pelago customer. For the avoidance of doubt, the 2nd booking refers to the 2nd booking of the Pelago customer under a separate PNR.
    – Valid for all travel experiences on Pelago only in destination countries and layover countries applicable to the PNR used for the booking, excluding the products found in this list.
  • This Promotion cannot be applied with any other existing Pelago promotions, offers or privileges, unless otherwise stated.
  • Any KrisFlyer miles earned or redeemed from bookings made on www.Pelago.co will be based on the final amount paid, after eligible discounts from this Promotion have been applied. Other terms and conditions for the use of KrisFlyer miles on Pelago will apply.
  • All bookings are subject to Pelago’s Terms of Use, and all collection, use and disclosure of personal data submitted for purchases made during this Promotion will be in accordance with Pelago’s Privacy Policy.
  • Pelago reserves the right to amend or withdraw any terms and conditions of this Promotion, and/or terminate the Promotion, without any prior notice at its sole and absolute discretion.
  • The terms and conditions of this Promotion shall be governed by and construed in accordance with the laws of the Republic of Singapore and shall be subject to the exclusive jurisdiction of the Singapore courts.

Earning and redeeming KrisFlyer miles on Pelago

Earning KrisFlyer miles

All Pelago users will continue to enjoy 3 mpd on all bookings, upsized from the previous 1 mpd from 28 June 2023 onwards.

Miles will be automatically credited to your KrisFlyer account up to one week after completing the booked experience. 

For miles to be credited:

  • your KrisFlyer membership number must be reflected on the booking details page
  • Your Pelago booking must be made under your name as it appears in the KrisFlyer membership records

In other words, you can’t earn miles on bookings made for other people.

KrisFlyer miles will be awarded on the final amount paid for Pelago bookings (including taxes), after eligible discounts have been applied. 

Redeeming KrisFlyer miles

KrisFlyer members can normally redeem miles on Pelago at a rate of 150 miles= S$1, but from now till 31 December 2023, the rate has been upsized to 120 miles= S$1. 

This values 1 mile at 0.83 cents — certainly better than the usual 0.67 cents rate — but still suboptimal compared to a flight redemption.

❓ Options for Spending KrisFlyer Miles
Redemption Option Value per mile
✈️ Award flights  ≤5 cents 
✈️ Cash + Miles  0.95 cents 
🎡 Pelago  0.83 cents 
 0.67 cents 
🚘 KrisFlyer vRooms  ≥ 0.8 cents 
🛍️ KrisShop  0.8 cents 
🏨 Shangri-La Circle conversion  0.74 cents 
🏬 CapitaStar conversion  0.7 cents 
📱 Kris+  0.67 cents 
🛒 LinkPoints conversion  0.65 cents 
🏨 Marriott Bonvoy conversion  0.5 cents 
Esso Smiles conversion  0.33-0.67 cents 

To make matters worse, Pelago takes an all or nothing approach to redemption. You must pay the entire amount with KrisFlyer miles; there’s no option to mix cash and miles!

For example, suppose I want to buy an attraction ticket that costs S$48. At check-out, I can select KrisFlyer miles as my payment method, but the system forces me to pay the entire S$48 with 5,760 miles. 

This means that you couldn’t even use Pelago to selectively burn a small number of miles that are due to expire.

A few other things to note:

  • Pelago bookings redeemed with KrisFlyer miles must be made under your name, or the name of one of your redemption nominees
  • Pelago bookings redeemed with KrisFlyer miles can be cancelled, subject to the activity’s T&Cs. If so, miles will be refunded within two weeks. They’ll still have their original expiry date tagged to them, so you won’t be able to use this as a roundabout way of extending miles.

What card to use with Pelago?

Pelago transactions code as MCC 4722: Travel Agencies and Tour Operators, which means you can pay with the following cards to earn an additional 4-6 mpd. 

Card Earn Rate Remarks
UOB Lady’s Solitaire
Apply
6 mpd S$3K per c. month. Must choose Travel as 10X category
Review
UOB Lady’s Card
Apply
6 mpd S$1K per c. month. Must choose Travel as 10X category
Review
DBS Woman’s World Card
Apply
4 mpd S$2K per c. month
Review
HSBC Revolution
Apply
4 mpd S$1K per c. month
Review

Avoid using the Citi Rewards Card, as MCC 4722 is classified as a travel transaction and explicitly excluded from earning the bonus 4 mpd rate for online transactions.

For avoidance of doubt, the KrisFlyer UOB Credit Card will not earn 3 mpd on Pelago transactions, because Pelago is still not part of the SIA Group- at least as defined by the T&Cs. 

Conclusion

Pelago has quietly nerfed its admittedly generous 30% discount for Singapore Airlines customers, with the maximum discount now capped at just S$20 for the first-ever booking, and S$10 subsequently. 

Moreover, there will soon be additional geographic restrictions on the countries where the discount can be enjoyed, so if you want to take advantage of the discount outside the countries in your PNR, get it done ASAP.

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

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