Northwest Airlines Complaint - Beware of Cash and Miles "discounts"
BOSTON, MASSACHUSETTS -- Northwest frequently offers a Cash and Miles program, where you pay a reduced fare with cash plus 5K or 10K miles from your World Perks Account.
I need to go to Michigan in late February. The fare to my destination was almost $350. The Cash and Miles prices was $227 + 10K miles, so I took that. It is considered a non-refundable deal. OK...
Two week later, a friend expressed interest in going to Michigan with me. She has no miles, so we checked the latest, regular, published fare. I noticed that it dropped to $234. So under this great Cash and Miles "promotion", I essentially paid the same amount of cash as what anyone would pay now for a conventional fare, plus I'm out 10K miles.
I wanted to cancel that reservation, redeposit the miles, and rebook for that really low, regular fare. Northwest said they'd be happy to take $50 from me to redeposit the miles, which is fine, but that I would completely lose the revenue portion of the ticket (the $227). It was in the 'terms and conditions' that I signed.
I have no problem abiding by airline rules on discount fares, but I feel that the promotion ripped me off. Their strategy was to offer a great deal under Cash and Miles, get people like me to dump their miles, and then they went and dropped the regular fare anyway a few weeks later. My hat is off to the WorldPerks bean counters for a brilliant tactic.
I've always used NW as my primary airline for both business and personal travel, and have accumulated almost 150K miles in just a few years, but I have started to migrate away from them. But ya gotta love them big flashy links to their World Perks site...