GoAwards, as the new program is called, replaces what was a two-tiered mileage redemption chart with a chart that has four tiers that vary based on travel volume for a given day. So far, so good--except GoAwards doesn't offer the lowest tier (Off-Peak) for flights within the United States and Canada, or between North America and Hawaii.
- Flying exclusively within the U.S. and Canada? Today, it's either 25K for Saver or 50K for Standard. Under GoAwards, you'll need 25K for Low days, 40K for Medium days, or 60K for High days.
- Looking for that trip to Hawaii? Saver awards are 35K and Standards are 70K. But GoAwards takes 40K on Low days, 65K on Medium days, and a whopping 90K on High days.
There's no news yet as to whether fellow Star Alliance airlines United and Continental will copy this model. But I doubt it, because angry elite passengers tend to go elsewhere.
And if they don't follow U.S. Airways' lead, I suggest that every U.S. Airways Dividend Miles elite member do exactly that: request reciprocal status in OnePass or Mileage Plus, and get more value for your miles.