Korean SkyPass to no longer allow stopovers

Korean SkyPass used to be a Chase Transfer Partner, though that relationship ended last year. One of the strengths of the program has been the ability to get a free stopover in Korea, but they are ending free stopovers on award tickets for travel on Korean Airlines metal effective for travel on July 1, 2020 or later. That means that if you speculatively transferred miles to Korean before the partnership ended, you’ve still got more than a year to book travel with a free stopover.

Effective for travel from July 1, 2020

Again, the good news here is that it isn’t taking effect for quite a while. You can currently book a stopover on each one-way journey when booking an award on Korean Airlines flights. You’ll still be able to do that for travel before July 1, 2020. To be clear, that’s not a ticketing deadline but rather a travel deadline — if you’re flying after that date (which of course is not yet bookable), you’re subject to the new rule.

After July 1, 2020, you’ll only be allowed up to 24 hours to transit. A stop of more than 24 hours will cause the award to price as two separate awards. For instance, if you fly from North America to Souteast Asia on Korean with a stop of more than 24 hours in Korea, you’ll pay separately for the flight from North American to Korea and then for the flight from Korea to Southeast Asia, which will cause awards to become more expensive.

You can read the very brief announcement here on the Korean website.

You can see the Korean Airlines award chart here.

H/T: Traveling for Miles

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Nick Reyes is a (fairly) regular guy with an animalistic passion for maximizing the value of miles and money to travel the world in comfort and style. There is little in life that he loves more than finding a fantastic deal and helping you shop smarter & harder to achieve your travel dreams.

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TJ Park
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TJ Park

Korean skypass has been my favorite redemption option due to generous availability even the first class, ability to share and pool miles among family members, free hold almost indefinitely and free to cancel. Being able to chat online also helps… you can book, put reservation on hold even if you don’t have enough miles or put your self on a waiting list and you can do all of that through online chat. there is no other program that gives you this kind of flexibility and seamless booking experience. Only downside was inability to book for anyone outside of your immediate family up to 6 but that didn’t matter for me. what really killed all this was the end of ability to transfer chase UR points to skypass. Recently I redeemed all miles I speculatively transferred from Chase last year so this change will not impact me.

John Klukas
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They ended free cancellations a year or so ago. Now they charge you 3,000 miles to cancel an award ticket. Which kind of sucks as I used to use them for dummy bookings when necessary to show exit tickets when I otherwise was uncertain of my travel plans. Given that one can no longer transfer points from Chase to KE, it is much more inconvenient to have to cough up the miles rather than simply paying a cancellation fee in cash.