Hyatt Has Been Busy Adding Properties To The Portfolio. It’s always great to see my favorite chain adding properties. They added four properties in France. Two new hotels in Paris, one in Cannes and one in Nice (with a casino). All seem like decent additions to the chain. And, since they only have 3 properties in France now, this more than doubles their footprint in a country that many people like to travel to.
They also added another hotel in Los Angeles. I’m not familiar with the property, but more is always better.
They also added a Hyatt Place in Corpus Christ, Texas. Not remarkable specifically, but they don’t currently have a property in Corpus Christi. The knock on Hyatt has always been they don’t have enough properties in smaller markets (Corpus Christi definitely fits that bill). They are quietly filling in those gaps.
AAdvantage Miles Cheapest I’ve Seen In A While, But Should You Be A Buyer? I wasn’t going to report on the most recent mileage sale being conducted by American Airlines because other bloggers had covered it just fine, IMO. View From The Wing points out that while there’s a bit of risk that AA and US Airways don’t merge, you’re probably better off buying Dividend Miles at a tenth of a penny cheaper and wait for them to be converted to AAdvantage miles. Obvious cons here, but it is a better price. Here’s what the AA offer looks like:
American offered miles for essentially the same price a few times last year. I’ve only bought points once in my life. It was probably well over 5 years ago now, and I was trying to lock up Lifetime Platinum status on American Airlines. American used to allow you to do so with miles earned from any source, including transfers from other programs. Alas, this doesn’t exist anymore. I bought 20,000 Starpoints to convert into AAdvantage miles and had thought I would keep executing the same strategy to bump up my balance. But, I ultimately decided that American wasn’t about to make the change just yet and that I could put my money to better use.
I’m not a buyer here of either Dividend Miles or AAdvantage miles. While there are definitely values to be had at these prices, I think the more prudent path here is to work on other ways to acquire miles (shopping portals, credit card sign-up bonuses) and keep a decent surplus on hand to use when you need/want to take a trip.
American Airlines Continues To Shrink It’s “Focus Cities”. American used to have a number of cities that weren’t hubs but still had a decent amount of unique traffic. Boston was one for a long time. With the current round of eliminations, Boston will be a much tinier market for American. American decided at some point that it didn’t want to compete with other carriers in Boston, including JetBlue, on routes that didn’t head back to their hubs. So, they ceded a lot of ground in that market, not unlike how they shrunk my home airport (Washington Dulles) from almost a dozen gates to 2, where they discontinued direct service to major cities like Chicago and San Juan, Puerto Rico. Disappointing for sure to see from my favorite airline, but at this point they’re likely to pick up a ton of East coast presence with a US Airways merger. This was inevitable.